Aldi says it’s boosting stocks of its most popular Special Buys and will sell some several times a year – but it warns customers to stop fighting over them.
In a rare interview , the chain denies claims it’s been baiting shoppers with insufficient stock.
“People go running in for the discount, and that’s not the behaviour we want to see,” Aldi’s Adrian Christie said.
The real trouble has come from bulky goods, where some stores have as few as eight in stock.
“You can’t have a limited number of products, advertise it, and be sold out within minutes,” Marketing Focus’ Barry Urquhart said.
“That’s annoying, frustrating, and to many people, misleading.”
“So, the question then becomes, do we not stock larger items?” Mr Christie said.
“And I think some of or customers would be disappointed if we didn’t have a 65-inch TV.”
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Mr Christie said extremely popular items such as the rocking chair will now be sold multiple times throughout the year .
A ticketing trial is also underway at some stores to ensure that first in are first served.
Accused of “bait advertising” – luring in customers, then running out of stock – Aldi knows it needs to make a change, or the consumer watchdog may force its hand.
Aldi was recently named the nation’s most trusted brand, and it’s now been voted Supermarket of the Year in a Canstar survey of 3000 homes.
Analysts agree Aldi’s shakeup of the supermarket sector has probably peaked and the challenge now is maintaining momentum.
A refresh of ageing stores, some almost 20 years old, is already underway.