A Quarter For Your Thoughts on Inconveniencing Your Customers

Disclosure: We’re big fans of ALDI.

The German-based grocer sells mostly private-branded food items in clean, no-frills stores. Shoppers bring their own bags or pay for paper or plastic bags at checkout. The shopping carts are locked up, outside the store entrance. To unlock a cart costs a quarter –it’s just a deposit, fully refunded when you return the cart, but honestly, it’s kind of a hassle.

And ALDI shoppers don’t seem to mind.

Yes, we’re talking about shopping in the 21st century, when convenience is king. When online grocery orders are delivered to your door, and boxes from meal-prep companies are popping up on porches in even middle-class neighborhoods. When standing outside to unlock a grocery cart seems more than quaint. In fact, it’s a bit of a hassle.  

It’s pretty obvious that ALDI isn’t competing with convenience-crazy, SKU-heavy superstores or even large regional grocers. It’s also clear ALDI has a very loyal following.

In 2018, ALDI started using the tagline “Shop Differentli.” Maybe it was a blatant steal from the classic VW “get a box” ad campaign, or maybe it’s just good marketing – because it’s good communication.

There’s no butcher on site at ALDI. You can’t get a custom cake or helium balloon or even a cup of coffee. But the prices are pretty darned good, and the so is the service. And that seems to be what ALDI shoppers want. Knowing what your customers want, and explaining that you offer it – in a clear, honest and engaging way – that’s a good start on good marketing.


Do you know what your customers want? Do you know what they love about the way you do business? That’s what your marketing should communicate; that’s the way to attract more of the customers who will nurture your business.

Coins image from Pixabay

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