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Sainsburys’ offers, so good that I’m virtually hypnotised into obeying

Sainsburys are not doing as well as their supermarket rivals:

Sainsbury’s lagged rivals as the worst performer of the UK’s Big Four supermarkets …

In the 12 weeks to August 12, Sainsbury’s sales grew just 1.2pc, compared with a 3.5pc average across all the grocers.

Why are Sainsburys underperforming? Well, this doesn’t help:

A WHOLE 10P OFF RYVITA RYE CRISPBREAD! TO USE WITHIN TWO WEEKS. Forget the other supermarkets, I’m going to drive five miles out of my way next time to use Sainsburys just so I can get 10p off Ryvita rye crispbread. I might even leave work early to make sure I get there before the rush.

Admittedly it’s not a product I ever buy, it’s not a product I even like much, but who can argue with 10p? Not to mention the offer of 20p off unsalted butter. Sure I don’t use unsalted butter, but that’s twice as much off as the crispbread offer.

For me the moment when Sainsburys went downhill was when they stopped stocking classier products and started doing more of their own mediocre home brand stuff. (I can’t remember when this was, though. Five years ago? Eight?) At that point a lot of middle-class people switched to Waitrose because they had more snob appeal, but Sainsburys couldn’t compete with Tesco or Asda on the cheap front either.

(I used to like Sainsburys’ petrol offers, 4p a litre off, they were good value, but with the markup on petrol so slim to start with there was no way they could ever sustain that.)

Update: I may go back just to see what other ludicrous offers they can come up with. 5p off gluten-free spinach-flavoured haggis? 8p off fat-free porridge? 50p off lichen-and-masala shampoo?

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