The consumer watchdog, Which? has recently released information which is showing that some people are being misled by supermarkets when it comes to special offers. The watchdog found that many supermarkets were guilty of pricing tactics that were not very clear, and in many cases left the consumer worse off.
The study showed that in some cases supermarkets were repricing items saying that they were on special offer, when in actual fact, the product was more expensive after the so-called discounting.
The executive director of the watchdog, Richard Lloyd, commented, “What was most surprising to us was how widespread this problem tended to be. It is something that is being done by almost every supermarket and the range of products which are subject to this deceptive pricing is enormous. This sort of pricing is particularly unfair as its targets people who are living busy lives as they don’t have the time to work out what special offers a really worthwhile pursuing.”
The watchdog highlighted that there are four major tactics being employed by supermarkets in order to trick people into paying more for their discounted goods. A recent example was a tactic by Asda which saw the supermarket double the price of the yoghurt before putting them on a special offer which actually made them 25 percent more expensive than they were selling before the price rise and special offer.
Supermarkets are also keeping items at a discounted price for far longer than they are actually selling them at the full price, suggesting that the discount is not really a discount at all. Supermarkets have commented that they do not intend to mislead their customers and they are trying to offer their customers the best deals possible all the time. Which? have said that consumers should make sure that all the goods they purchase are as good a deal as they initially think.