Woolworths shoppers split over major change to sale items

Woolworths customers are taking to Facebook to express their opinion after noticing a major change to supermarket shelves.

The social media storm follows a decision from the grocery giant which involves on-shelf price tags transitioning from paper to digital in select stores.

The change is set to save paper, update pricing and sales in real-time, and allow team members to track product locations quickly.

But not all customers are impressed with the change.

Woolworths shelf showing new digital tags. Specials tags are yellow and regular tags are white. All are uniform in size. Source: Facebook
All tags, including specials, are the same size, but specials will remain yellow in colour. Source: Facebook

Shoppers complain it's 'really hard' to spot the deals

Posting to the 243,000 members of the Markdown Addicts Australia Facebook group, one customer explained that the smaller size of the sale tags makes it harder to spot specials.

“I had to look really hard to see these new signs at Woolworths; sale tags aren’t hanging over the original but replacing the original and I don’t like it!” they said.

“You just have to look for the yellow colours,” responded one member.

Other group members have also chimed in with their opinion on the change.

Yellow specials tags on Woolworths shelf.
The previous Woolworths specials tags were very easy to spot. Source: Getty Images

“I like it, it means they won’t get ripped off like the hanging ones” commented a Woolworths team member.

“You have no idea how many people ask me if something is on special when the rest of the same brand is, just because one doesn’t have a ticket.”

Another customer commented that the new ticket sizes aren’t favourable to those with impaired vision.

“As someone who’s colourblind & has bad eyes, I actually browse to see long tags, not stop to look at a million tiny tags to see what’s on sale.”

New tags being trialled in stores across Australia

Yahoo News Australia has been informed that Woolworths worked with supply partners to create custom-sized electronic shelf labels to allow communication of product information at the largest size possible.

Whilst the original poster was from Melbourne, Woolworths team members from Sydney and Brisbane have commented on the post, confirming that the digital tags are also being trialled in their stores.

The post has attracted hundreds of comments from group members who speculated about the reasons for the change.

“The smaller the specials ticket, the more we don't see, or the longer we spend in store looking for specials, therefore they hope we buy more,” wrote one Facebook user.

“The paper tags used to be ripped off too easy, and they'd have to keep replacing them, which isn't cost effective,” said another.

“It’s all about being better for the environment and saving paper usage. It also ensures that pricing is in the correct location,” commented a third.

Woolworths reveals details, reasons for tag changes

A Woolworths spokesperson has confirmed with Yahoo News that the digital tags are replacing paper tags at select stores only for now.

“Over the last 12 months, we've been trialling electronic shelf labels in select stores,” the spokesperson said.

“These electronic labels are designed to reduce paper, update the latest prices and specials in real time and reduce manual ticketing to allow our team to focus on serving customers and replenishing shelves.

“We appreciate these customers’ feedback on the trial and will continue to gather more feedback over the coming months.”

A Woolworths sign adorns the front of a supermarket store in Sydney. Photo taken on a diagonal showing the sky. Source: Reuters
Woolworths has confirmed with Yahoo News that it is taking all feedback on the tag trial into consideration. Source: Reuters

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