Author Topic: A New Way of shopping  (Read 4006 times)

phred

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A New Way of shopping
« on: February 15, 2014, 01:05:32 PM »
Maintaining a price book takes a lot of work and entries.  Knowing that the price of a can of pineapple was 37 cents a year ago doesn't help much if you need a can of pineapple today.  And, are you really going to hit all four groceries to check the price of a can of pineapple?

Enter the new way of shopping.  Each of your four (in this example) friends goes to a different grocery.  As you all roam the aisles you do instant comparisons of all the items on the master list.  You are all in constant contact via your cell phones  For example, one of you may buy all the pineapple for the four of you, while another may buy all the chicken.  This should get all of you the lowest total bill.  Of course this method will drive some stores out of business.  No one can be lowest on everything; they all need some gravy to stay afloat.

When do I use a price book?  I track things I buy in large quantity so I get a heads up as to what are the parts of the year when prices are probably the lowest --> time to stock up.

From the comfort of home I also enter the sales items from the ad flyers on a spreadsheet.  Most grocery items are on a repeating sales cycle.  This way I can hold off buying the Porterhouse if it seems likely they'll be on sale the next week.  You'll need to enter the size as well as the price as prices may seem to have gone down, but that's because the package has shrunk

netskyblue

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2014, 01:27:53 PM »
Innnnnteresting.  I bet someone could make a great start-up business by maintaining a local "price book" website, if you got word around, and got enough members to your site, constantly inputting price data.

Not the same thing as the group buying you suggested, but still... it's a thought.  Kind of wish I had the ambition & connections to make it happen.

AccidentalMiser

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2014, 03:24:42 PM »
Maintaining a price book takes a lot of work and entries. 

Golly, this whole thing sounds like a lot of work.   I simply shop at a place where food is cheap. (Aldi) 

However, your plan does sound kind of fun (as fun as shopping for food can be.)

And I really do like netskyblue's idea of crowdsourcing this information.  I could definitely write a business plan for that.

phred

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2014, 03:37:59 PM »
Go for it!

Bbqmustache

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2014, 03:51:31 AM »
Maintaining a price book takes a lot of work and entries. 

Golly, this whole thing sounds like a lot of work.   I simply shop at a place where food is cheap. (Aldi) 

However, your plan does sound kind of fun (as fun as shopping for food can be.)

And I really do like netskyblue's idea of crowdsourcing this information.  I could definitely write a business plan for that.

We love Aldi too!  But their eggs and dairy prices seem to be heading north fast!

anastrophe

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2014, 06:29:05 PM »
I think I read about this in the Tightwad Gazette. Not using phones, obviously, but somebody had their friends checking prices back in the early 90's. I think they photocopied the price book for their neighborhood.

None of my friends would get it, sadly.

zachd

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2014, 06:57:00 PM »

I downloaded an app that is supposed to do this basically.. you scan bar codes while shopping.. if it's cheaper elsewhere in your town it will tell you.  If it's not in the database, you can enter it.  You get some sort of reward points for entering new items.  Unfortunately, even basic items I scanned were not shown for my area, so I haven't bothered with it too much.. I mean time is money too right.
It's called price spotting.

Have 4 people to shop at the same time would be great, if you had 4 people who would want to do that.  You would also have to all drive and meet up and swap groceries out of one bag and in to other bags and probably there would be someone mad because you bought chicken thighs but they wanted chicken breasts. 

Also probably after a few times it would become apparent who had the best prices for what, similar to keeping a price book.

I also downloaded 'out of milk' which is a pretty good grocery list app.  I'm not sure how good it will be for comparing prices, but I'm trying to enter prices for everything for our primary grocer store to compare later.

foobar

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2014, 07:40:01 PM »
Nah their customers are too cheap to own cell phones with expensive data plans:)

The question is do stores want these customers? Get a store to upload their prices to you every day and it makes the consumers job easier and avoids the problem of creating a network.


Innnnnteresting.  I bet someone could make a great start-up business by maintaining a local "price book" website, if you got word around, and got enough members to your site, constantly inputting price data.

Not the same thing as the group buying you suggested, but still... it's a thought.  Kind of wish I had the ambition & connections to make it happen.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: A New Way of shopping
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2014, 01:50:11 PM »
Way too much work. At some point you have to value time and fuel.

I'm lucky to live in an area with a very cheap full-service grocery store that runs very few sales, instead operating on a very low markup that stays pretty constant year round (except for produce, which obviously fluctuates).

If I didn't live in an area like that, I'd just shop and cook even more improvisationally than I already do. Most of my "list" is just core staples that rarely fluctuate in price. To that I add whatever's cheap in the produce section.