How supermarkets trick you into spending more

Products targeting children are placed at their eye level and made easily accessible to them. Photo / Getty
Products targeting children are placed at their eye level and made easily accessible to them. Photo / Getty

Ever been tempted to pick up flowers at the supermarkets' entrance, or resolved not to take your children grocery shopping because they nag you to buy items that shouldn't even be in a supermarket?

A report released by the UK Groceries Code Adjudicator reveals how supermarkets position products and lay out stores to entice customers to spend more.

Here are five of the sneaky ways supermarkets influence your shopping decisions:


Grocery industry expert Phil Lempert believes the placement of flowers and bright colours by the front immediately puts shoppers in a good mood.

And the more welcomed and at ease you feel, the more likely you are to take your time with your grocery shopping, inevitably buying more.


There's a reason milk, bread and eggs are stored well away from the front door. Dotting those weekly staples in hard to reach places forces shoppers to be tempted by other items as they make what's intended as a "quick trip" for the basics.

READ MORE: The dirtiest parts of a supermarket


Supermarket sound tracks are considered to have a huge impact on shoppers' habits, according to marketing experts.

Martin Lindstrom is a branding expert who has spoken extensively on the tricks employed by stores and brands to entice shoppers into spending more.

He says music has a huge impact on us as we trawl the aisles. Lindstrom believes choosing songs with rhythms "slower than the average heartbeat" is the key to getting customers to spend more time and money when shopping.


The floor plan of most supermarkets encourages customers to move around in a clockwise direction.

According to research, people are inclined to spend more when moving in clockwise motion than they would walking anticlockwise.


Whether it's a toy or sugary treat, the products targeting children are placed at their eye level so they can easily access their desired item, and either nag you to buy it or sneak it into the shopping trolley.


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