Extreme Couponing Tip: Shop the Store Perimeter

Ever vow to run into a store, grab just a few things and get out, but half an hour later find yourself wandering the aisles, all thoughts of a fast retreat faded? This simple solution can help: shop the store perimeter to save time, money, and benefit your health!

Aisle Layouts Increase Customer Spending
Store layouts are often the same across the country: produce near the entrance; dairy, eggs, bakery, seafood, and meat products along the sides; and packaged, canned, and processed food in the center aisles. Why do stores do this? The answer comes down to higher profits. Shoppers simply buy more when they have to go through the middle aisles to get to the fresh goods they need. Once stores get customers in a center aisle, they are much more likely to visit other middle aisles and be influenced to buy items that are not on their list or on sale.

What You Can Do
To counter this, shop around the edges of the store. First fill your cart with fresh produce, dairy and protein products, and bread. This will leave less room in the cart for expensive impulse buys. The important lesson is to stick to your list, only buy the packaged items you will use that are on sale, and stay mainly in the outer aisles. When you are finished with the perimeter and your list, make a beeline to checkout, thus avoiding the temptation to “just shop around.”

Fresh and Nutritious 
An added bonus to perimeter shopping is health benefits. Many times the middle aisles contain processed foods: those with high sodium and fat content, added preservatives, and artificial colors and flavors, though this is not true for all center items. Krazy Couponers often venture to the middle to get staples like flour, oil, yeast, rice, whole grain cereal, canned fish, seasonings, beans, peanut butter, and canned fruits and veggies that are not in season. In these cases, remember to stay focused on your list, and you will find a faster, healthier, and less expensive trip!