Monday, 29 November 2010

Waitrose Tesco Price Match only Half True

Upmarket Waitrose (part of the John Lewis Partnership) has a Price Match campaign with the UK's biggest supermarket Tesco. Shelf edge labels show they are the same price as Tesco on thousands of everyday branded products.

But Waitrose shoppers who rarely venture into downmarket Tesco may not be getting the full picture. This weekend I visited both supermarkets. Waitrose is Price Matching Tesco on 2 leading brands of cheese.

Catherdral City Mature 200g is £2.15 in both stores. But in Tesco you get 2 packs for £2. Barmy I know, but that is better than buy one get one free. The Waitrose shelf edge sticker makes no mention that you could not only save 15p but get another pack free if you bought the cheese at Tesco.

The other cheese offer is Saint Agur. Waitrose Price Match Tesco at £1.99. But Tesco currently offers buy one get one free, so for £1.99 you get not 1, but 2 packs - the equivalent of 99p a pack.

So, yes Waitrose is technically Price Matching Tesco, but they're only giving customers half the picture.

Waitrose do actually tell their customers this - if they bother to read the terms and conditions of the offer.

The terms state: "If Tesco has an item on a multi-buy promotion (for example 'buy one get one free') we will still match the single unit selling price of the item but not offer the free product".

Wow. That's a great offer Waitrose, half the value on Tesco's special offers. Of course Waitrose customers will never know - because they don't often venture inside Tesco. Well done Waitrose - a marketing triumph!

1 comment:

Peter King said...

I read your comments regarding Waitrose apparently "price matching" Tesco with interest in the light of today's well-orchestrated marketing press releases.

For some months I have noticed that Waitrose was only "price-matching" Tesco where that meant the Tesco price was higher than the previous Waitrose price. Thus they were able to disguise a price hike with this cynical ploy. If then the Tesco price went down the line would no longer be "price-matched" at Waitrose.

What a marketing triumph but a complete confidence trick! Now they are so confident that their customers have no idea what Tesco's prices are, they are gilding the lily with this new idea.

Make no mistake, Waitrose is a very good supermarket with many good lines but they don't need to stoop to these tricks which only serve to annoy those who do have their wits about them.