Grocery stores offer personalized pricing to help you save

Don't Waste Your Money

(WXYZ) - There's a sale in aisle three, and it's exclusively for you!

Next time you shop at the grocery store, you may be offered a custom price for some of your favorite foods. The key to unlocking these secret savings is a swipe of your loyalty card.

Linda Darragh likes saving green on her groceries, but doesn't have the time to sift through weekly specials.

"I'm not one to pick up store circulars," says Darragh.

Instead, she picks up this personal grocery scanner. As she fills her cart, it delivers custom discounts tailored to her tastes.

"If I can get a bargain, I certainly appreciate getting the bargain," says Darragh.

Think of it as the next generation of loyalty card savings. Phil Lempert, The Supermarket Guru, says this phenomenon is known as personalized pricing, and a growing number of national grocery chains are testing it out, in one form or another.

Meijer has personalized coupons through a program called ‘M-Perks'. You need a text enabled phone to sign up, but no card is required. You will then get digital coupons delivered to your phone, based on your shopping habits, to use on top of Meijer sales and regular coupons.

Kroger offers some personalized pricing as well. Shoppers who use their "Kroger Plus" loyalty cards will get coupons in the mail personalized to what they buy, unlike other programs with Kroger.

You'll only get coupons for products you already purchase, not a competitor's products or new products. Kroger and Meijer both tell 7 Action News that your buying habits and personal information are private and not sold to anyone.

Lempert says one question still remains, "…whether or not consumers are going to become very aggravated to know that the person standing next to them has a different price."

Darragh feels her special savings are worth every penny.

"I'm really surprised on some days when I see that I've saved $15, $20, $30, and that's important!"

Keep your eyes peeled! Lempert says grocery stores are also experimenting with flash sales. That means they will offer a product at a deep discount for a limited amount of time. Think frozen pizza sold at half price for just two hours!

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