Don’t Buy Checkout Lane Items

What’s 1 place in the grocery store that everyone has time to waste?  Yup, the checkout lane.

Sadly, we aren’t the only ones that have realized this.  Grocery store designers figured this out a long time ago, they are smart peeps.  There’s no other spot in the store that has more things packed into such a small space.  They even hang things along side of the displays to further increase the number of items!  Have you also noticed how all of those items are incredibly colorful to grab your attention?

All of these items have 6 things in common:

1. They all have a low price.

2. They are all small enough to be easily picked up with 1 hand.

3. They are all positioned about arm level, to further reduce your tendency to resist.

4. They all have a good profit margin for the store.

5. Candy is usually at the bottom, and smell good things at the top.  Children buy candy, adults buy breathe and car fresheners.

6. Everything is incredibly colorful.  The only dull item in the aisle is the brown bag of regular M&M’s, and even that has 6 colors on the bag!  But really, who still needs to be sold on M&M’s?

If these items didn’t have these qualities, they wouldn’t be up there in the aisle.  If they made more money with the filet mignon in front, they would put it up there, but all those small items add up.

Here’s a good rule of thumb:

Don’t pick up any item in the checkout aisle.  If you see soda, candy, gum or a magazine you want, go back to the aisle they have them in and compare prices.

I know it’s hard to avoid the temptation of a delicious item or pack of gum, but take a look at buying gum in the larger (discounted) packages  and the $1 boxes of candy from stores like Target.

Posted on May 10, 2013 in Education

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