I’ve changed – my grocery shopping habit, that is.
Tesco, my long time favourite food store has reduced the number of lines it carries. At first it was one or two items but it started to seem that every week there was something else I couldn’t find. It got annoying so now I’m using Tesco only for odds and ends. In fact, I’ve only been in there a couple of times during August. Apart from all else, I’ve been going there for the past 30 years and I’m bored, bored, bored.
It’s no secret that I don’t like Aldi; we will never be friends. It seems, from what I have read in the newspapers and on various blogs, that I am in the minority, but I’ve tried it a few times over the years and I just don’t like it. I’m sure there are items that are perfectly ok but I don’t rate the quality of the fruit and veg and I have an aversion to shopping out of cardboard boxes.
Morrisons is Ok, but there’s something that just doesn’t hit the spot as a regular shopping venue. Likewise Asda and Sainsbury. I make very occasional visits to these for specific items but it’s not an uplifting experience. We don’t have a local Waitrose although I do make trips to the nearest branch from time to time.
All of which leaves a bit of a hole. I’ve mentioned before that I’ve shopped with Ocado. I’ve been doing this more often of late. In fact, three ‘big’ shops in the past three months. Yes, many items are more expensive but as prices are definitely rising in Tesco, the differential is not really so large. Added to this, I have received regular vouchers for 15% off my Ocado shop (I have never yet ordered from Ocado without one) plus free delivery. What’s more, where they have offers such as Buy-one-get-one-free or half-price, these seem to relate better to the products that I want to buy. Now the whole picture becomes more enticing. I cross referenced my latest shop from Ocado with Tesco prices, and taking into account the 15% discount, saved an overall £1.27. Not an amount that would make me choose either way.
But whilst Ocado wins my vote for the time being, I wonder how it will be when, in 2020, they sever their ties with Waitrose and forge a new partnership with M&S. Personally, I think this is a wrong move. M&S does not currently carry the lines that Waitrose does. Perhaps they’ll change but I’ve always seen it as somewhere to shop for treats rather than the staples. Ocado offer a good choice of such goods but I can’t see M&S filling the Waitrose gap. My predictions are that Ocado will lose a number of shoppers to Waitrose who offer their own online ordering and delivery service, and that many of those who stay with Ocado will replace their usual Waitrose goods with Ocado’s own (which I have to say I have been very satisfied with). This will no doubt please Ocado but I can’t see M&S branded goods selling to the extent that the company might have hoped for. But then, I’ve never worked in the supermarket sector so what do I know? Time will tell.