Less Is More means good news for ASDA, less choice for you

17 August 2009

It won't be long before the shelves of ASDA are looking like a food warehouse at the Dharma Institute. Owners Wal-Mart have recently begun rolling out a sales strategy in the US called Project Impact, which sees the moon-sized hypermarkets reducing the number of products they stock by up to 15% - so more shelf space can be given over to best-sellers.

Obviously, this strategy also allows Wal-Mart to negotiate fatter margins for themselves and lower prices for the customers, but it also sounds the death knell for other brands - one company saw its value drop by a fifth when Wal-Mart ended its supply contract. Another upshot is that the world's biggest companies become more bloated; Wal-Mart made $4.3 billion in profit last year, and accounts for 15% of Procter & Gamble's sales, and over a third of Del Monte's business.

How is this playing out in your local ASDA? UK stores have been operating their Less is More campaign, and according to The Guardian have reduced the number of products in-store by a staggering 30%. According to ASDA, devoting more space to fewer products means they get better prices for branded essentials, even if that means restricting choice and reducing pressure on suppliers to be competitive.

Still, there's still plenty of room for creative pricing at ASDA. The Grocer investigated their latest Roll Back promotion with almost 1000 products rounded to £1, and found nearly one fifth had their prices rounded up, which meant they cost more in July than they did in March, before the Roll Back began. Hooray for value!


  • Colin
    Well, this explains why I can never find the products I want, I was wondering why they seemed to stock totally random selections of stuff (even limiting to certain flavours of some drinks, etc.), and possibly also why different Asdas have totally different ranges to choose from.
  • Dan
    ASDA already do this... Lots of one, none of the others! Tho our ASDA does sport an isle full of Polish and Caribbean junkfood... Who want's to eat peanut flavoured porridge..?
  • Gynx
    Over the past few weeks I've been noticing 'brand' products disappear and in place all I can find is "ASDA products" for example, Utterly Butterly has disappeared off the face of the Earth, those those Flora cholesterol reducing yoghurts this week disappeared yet Asda branded cholesterol reducing yoghurts are filling the shelves with the assistant informing me there will be another delivery in the evening and knowing nothing about the Flora line. I don't buy 'brand' products for the sake of buying them, and there is a few ASDA products I usually do pick up, but forcing me to buy them by reducing the availability of better quality stock isn't going to work, I'll be going elsewhere.
  • fuzzchopz
    Yep noticed this over the last 6 months kitchen roll you have a choice of either Asda or Plenty now in our local store loo rolls you can now only buy in a 4 pack or higher all the twin packs have gone. You have also got shortsizing going on still as well.
  • kyalion
    If you want to try poor choice on anything try the one in Leamington Spa. Fine if you only want ethnic and gluten-free food or baby wipes, but shite at everything else.
  • fu m.
    i wish they would just cut down on the other stuff like home furnishings, cards, electricals etc... all that shit I can get at somewhere else. but I can't get fish sauce at a fucking card shop. when my old (v large) tesco expanded by 25% I got excited thinking that they might have enough shelf space to stock more than 12 cans of coconut milk at a time - no such luck. i swear the food range got smaller
  • Children t.
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