By Jo Pugh •
Published: 19 Sep 2023 • 8:35
Supermarkets are using potentially dodgy tactics on loyalty offers said Which? Credit: pressfoto/Freepik
Supermarkets are employing questionable tactics with their loyalty offers, creating the illusion of more significant savings than reality, reveals a recent investigation by Which?
Until recently, the notion of identical products having different prices for various customers might have seemed dubious. However, this practice has now become commonplace in several major UK supermarkets.
The trend of member-only pricing, where loyal customers pay less than non-members, is rapidly gaining popularity following numerous advertising campaigns.
In a six-month analysis of numerous member-only offers at Tesco and Sainsbury’s, Which? found that nearly a third of these offers were priced at their supposed ‘regular’ rate for less than half of that time.
These findings have been shared with the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).
The investigation raises concerns that supermarkets may be inflating their ‘regular’ prices to create the illusion of discounts for loyalty scheme customers.
Which? is urging supermarkets to ensure that non-member prices accurately reflect the true cost, making the savings genuinely meaningful. Customers providing their data to access these discounts should expect nothing less.
Tesco told Which? all its Clubcard Price promotions followed strict rules, including looking at how they compared against prices at other supermarkets, to ensure they represented genuine value and savings. It said these rules had been endorsed by Trading Standards.
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Jo Pugh is a journalist based in the Costa Blanca North. Originally from London, she has been involved in journalism and photography for 20 years. She has lived in Spain for 12 years, and is a dedicated and passionate writer.
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