4 Grocery Store Layout Tactics You Should Know

As you wander down the grocery store aisle of your local supermarket, you sometimes have to laugh at yourself.

Why is it that you enter the store with the intention of picking up just a couple of items, but end up at the checkout with practically a full cart?

Grocery Store Layout Tactics

You have probably even tried to heed the words that tell us to never go to the grocery store on an empty stomach. Are you wondering if there might be some outside forces controlling your actions?

Some department stores use subliminal messages hidden in the music emitting from speakers as folks stroll the aisles. These messages such as “Don’t steal” or “Don’t shoplift” supposedly enter their subconscious and lead them down a crime-less path.

Regardless if this is true or not, as you walk down a grocery store aisle, are you being led somehow to spend more of your precious money then you intended to?

It’s a Fact – Businesses Need Your Business

No secret on that statement. They want you, they need you, and they want you back again and again. You may consider yourself pretty thrifty and not someone that falls into traps, but there is no way, however, to avoid a simple plan like the layout of the stores.

Truth be told, it’s a smart plan. It’s not illegal, it’s set up this way to even benefit you sometimes, and you can stop short of calling it sneaky. It’s just a good business technique.

From the moment you walk in and head down a grocery store aisle, the orchestra has begun to play, and they’re attempting to play your favorite tune.

Here are some of the things about your favorite grocery store layout that you have probably never thought twice about.

Tactics of the Grocery Store Layout

Produce is usually the first department you encounter

Grocery store layout tactics - Produce Department

What is more important than capturing your senses right away?

The floral department is no doubt right there next to produce. Your eyes see the bright colors, your nose catches the aromas of fresh fruit, flowers, and veggies, your hands feel the textures as you get to choose the melon that will belong to you.

Testing is done by the store chains to even find out which particular hue of yellow on a banana is most attractive to a customer. Amazing, but true.

The dairy department is usually near the back of the store

Tactics of the Grocery Store Layout - Diary department

You run in quickly to grab only a gallon of milk and some butter and realize the dairy department is in the back, furthest from the front door.

Ah yes, simple placement of the most common section of the store. Now you must wander through many of the grocery store aisles to simply get what you hoped would be a swift carry to the checkout.

At this point you are hurriedly looking around for a handbasket to tote the extras you run across, and a smart store manager will also have those baskets strategically placed around the store.

The most expensive items are placed at eye level on the shelves

Tactics of the Grocery Store Layout - Expensive Items Eye Level

Yes, a smart store manager will do this a lot. Product vendors of the high-priced name brands also offer incentives to stores to get prime shelf real estate.

You will normally find the generic or cheaper store-brand products way down low or way up high. If you take children with you to shop, note where the brightest, most appealing cartoon character items are placed on shelves – child eye level.

Where is the exit?

Grocery Store Layout - Exit

You might even notice in some stores it is nearly impossible to get to an exit door without a detour through the checkout area.

This might make you feel guilty if you didn’t see what you need and try to leave empty-handed. They also load those checkout lanes with lots of appealing goodies.

How To Ruin Their Plans

Next time you’re walking down a grocery store aisle, see if you notice their plans for you. Some of the tactics they use are actually helpful.

How many times have you been reminded in the store of items that you had forgotten you needed.

If you don’t like the tactics and don’t want to feel tricked or used, the best defense is to make your grocery list at home, carry it with you, and stick to it. Otherwise, the layout of the store just may lead you astray.