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Playing supermarkets at their own game: four techniques used by Brits

Published 21 August 2013 by

When getting the food shopping in, do you tend to stick to the same supermarket week in week out? Or do you prefer to shop around to find the best deals?

thinkmoney did some research* and found that a big proportion of Brits are savvy supermarket shoppers who adopt a few techniques in order to slash the costs of a weekly shop, such as:

1. Shopping later on in the day or at night to take advantage of reduced items.

17 million (34%) either always or often shop at a certain time of day in order to take advantage of reduced products.

2. Hopping from supermarket to supermarket in a hunt for the best deals.

We found that nearly 11 million people (21%) get their shopping from a handful of different supermarkets in an attempt to get the best deals.

3. Switching supermarkets based on who has the best promotions.

A further 8.5 million Brits (17%) switch allegiance to the shop with the most alluring offers.

4. Checking the cost of your shopping online and comparing to find the cheapest.

Surprisingly, only 1% of our respondents (or 500,000 people when taken up to a national level) said they check the cost of their shopping online before deciding on a supermarket.

We also found that a big chunk of Brits are 'loyal shoppers'. From our findings, it seems that 27 million Brits (54%) tend to shop regularly in the same supermarket, whether that be online or in person.

Do you regard yourself as a 'loyal shopper'? If you do, try breaking the habit and adopting one of these savvy strategies that so many British shoppers are benefiting from - you could end up saving loads.

Which technique should I use?

If you can't decide which technique to try, have a go at all of them and compare the cost of your shopping each time. Or, you could mix it up a bit and try two at once, such as: checking the cost of your shopping online to find the cheapest, and then visiting that supermarket later on in the day to take advantage of reduced items.

Some techniques might be a little impractical for you, especially if you struggle with travelling to and from a supermarket. In this case, it's good to find a balance between saving money and going completely out of your way - you don't want to end up spending more on travel than you save on the shopping itself!

Comparing the price of your big food shop online before heading out to the supermarket can really slash costs, so it's surprising that so few of us actually do it. MySupermarket is a great website if you're looking to find the best deals supermarkets are offering, as it compares your shopping with all the other major supermarkets to really cut the cost of a weekly shop.

What's your technique?

4% of our respondents said they do their shopping in a way we haven't listed here. Does your weekly shop sound similar to what we've listed? Or do you do something else?

If it does/you do, or if you haven't tried any of these shopping techniques, give one a go and let us know how you get on via our Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.

*Opinium Research carried out a survey of a representative sample of 2,015 UK adults from 29.01.13 to 31.01.13. Figures have been extrapolated to fit ONS 2013 population projections of 50,371,000 UK adults.