A Lesson From my Grocery Store

A Lesson from my Grocery Store

I went grocery shopping today at my neighborhood Fry’s Market and saw something that taught me a valuable lesson.

They already had their Valentine gifts for sale in the floral department — which was smart of them.  But it was one of those gifts (and they had lots and lots of this particular gift premade and ready to sell) that showed me what we as gift basket designers are missing out on.

A lot of you say that you don’t get much Valentine business.  But the grocery store does.  So do the florists.  One of the reasons, of course, is that they get these gifts prepared early and make them visible to customers who pass through while buying other things.  This is an advantage that we don’t have.  So we have to make a special effort to let our customers know how we can make them look so much better to that special someone, they are sending a gift to, than one of these ‘grab em and go’ grocery store gifts.

The gift itself was what caught my eye in this grocery store.  It was a candy bouquet that was selling for $19.95.  The gift was six candy bars on sticks stuck into a plastic vase filled with pink shred. The candy was sticking up like a whale jumping out of an ocean of cello puffs.  There was no design and they were (and this is my personal opinion) ugly.

Now, what can we learn from this one gift?  These six candy bars can be bought in bulk at Sam’s Club for 64 cents each for a total of 3.84.  I’m sure the grocery store gets even better prices.  The plastic vase was perhaps $1.  A little cello and a few cello puffs — I’ll be generous and say $1.00.  That’s a total cost of $5.84 for a gift that they are selling for $19.95.  Figure out that markup.  It’s a darn good one.

I know what I can create using these same products and I also know that it can be designed so that it is attractive and will tell the recipient that “I care about you!”

How about you?  Are you going to let the grocery stores beat you at your business with these kinds of gifts or are you going to create something that gives a WOW impression and market it to the hilt?

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