Grocery Shoppers Are Benefiting From Ongoing Pricing War
On Facebook a friend posted a photo of a pile of diapers, shaving cream, tooth paste, etc. boosting that she bought it all for less than $10 — I was impressed and intrigued. After scrolling through the comments I learned how she did it and was inspired to do the same, embarking on a brief foray into the world of extreme couponing.
For three or four days I was obsessed — clipping circulars, reading blogs, downloading apps, striking up conversations with like-minded strangers in the supermarket aisle — learning all I could about the art of the coupon. Heck, I even had my mother saving her coupons and passing them along to me as I dreamed of shopping carts full of free stuff that could all be had with a few magical pieces of paper.
My shinning achievement during those few brief coupon-obsessed days was saving $9.50 on some laundry detergent and razor blades which got me a not-at-all sarcastic “that a boy” from my wife. Unfortunately, as it is with most hobbies, the enthusiasm faded. The piles of unclipped circulars sit on my desk and my once prized coupon organizer has been sucked into the abyss of the bookcase, only to be discovered again next time a purge of the unread is conducted.
But while I failed as an extreme couponer, my desire to give it a go stemmed from a very real desire to save a few bucks. A desire I share with the masses. A desire that is helping to redefine the supermarket segment as we know it.
Whether the average shopping cart pusher realizes it or not, a grocery pricing war is in full effect. The major chains are all lowering prices and slicing margins in an attempt to draw in price conscious shoppers. In fact, in July the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that food prices dropped by 1.6%, marking the eighth consecutive month of declining food prices.
Grocery deflation has been a cause of concern for the segment for quite some time, making the performance of RIS’ Top 10 Grocers even more impressive. These 10 industry leaders have been able to not only compete but grow in a highly competitive market that has been defined by price cuts.
Even without a fistful of coupons in tow, shoppers, me included, are the true victors, as grocers continues to lower prices to ensure survival.