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Couponing Tip: Don’t Be Blinded By The Ads

Stand at the end of any grocery aisle and look to the other end.  What’s the first thing you notice?  All those yellow shelf tags sticking out like perfect little soldiers all in a row, right?  But what you’re missing are the one or two little “Unadvertised Special” tags mixed in with the bunch.  That’s because you’re suffering from a common affliction known as “Ad Blindness.”  You can’t see the forest for the trees!

What is ad blindness?

Advertisers have long been aware of this malady and they’re always looking for a new cure.  That’s one of the reasons those shelf tags are all yellow – the contrast of black printing on a yellow background attracts the most attention and it’s the easiest to read.

The grocery stores know you’re going to be looking for those yellow tags, too, because you’re looking for the sale items you saw in their ad so they use the yellow tags to help point you in the right direction.

But every grocery store also runs UN-advertised specials.  Maybe they over-ordered or maybe they’re discontinuing the item and they want to clear out their stock.  For whatever reason, you’ll find reduced-priced items all over the store that don’t appear in the ad. In order to let you know the item is discounted, the store will use a different attention-getting shelf tag.

It’s different because each store prints their own, in-house, and because they may not be able to hold that special price for long they want the tag to be different from the others so you won’t be able to come back and say, “Hey!  This was on sale yesterday, why not today?”

Because those UN-advertised shelf tags are so few and far between when compared to all those little yellow soldiers in every aisle, you’re likely to miss them due to ad blindness.  You’re also likely to miss out on some really great deals!

What’s the cure for ad blindness?

The cure is to train your eyes to look for those unadvertised shelf tags.  Make it a priority to walk every aisle in your favorite stores and look specifically for those tags – ignore everything else.  Learn what they look like and how to tell the difference.

They might say “Unadvertised Special” or “Closeout” or “For a Limited Time.”  Notice the colors and if they’re hung differently on the shelf.

It only takes a few minutes and it’s well worth the time. Then, the next time you go shopping you’ll start seeing those little “unadvertised special” tags all over the store and you’ll wonder just how many deals you’ve been missing out on!

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