The familiar Target Aisles in the front that carried $1 goods is an excellent hook for users. And a great way to dispose unsold inventory. However, Target has quietly introduced products that are at the $2.50 price point in the same aisles. The price tag is there, but its unlikely customers are noticing it. Many customers must be assuming that all products are at $1. A classic habitual response.
At least this is what happened to me and another shopper. A Hawaiian style straw hat looked like a very good buy at $1, only to realize later that it was priced at $2.50. Increasing the price point makes financial sense, but I wonder if customers will feel cheated if and when they find out that their purchase was not such a good bargain after all. There has to be some sort of visible delineation/marker between these products. At best, these aisles will lose their effectiveness as a purchase hook. At worst, its an easy way to lose customer trust. A bit at a time.

Intrusive Marketing?

September 27, 2006

Retailers already use bar-code data to understand consumer behavior and to create and segment customer profiles using purchase data. This data tells the retailer how often you visit, whether you visit the same store or different ones in the chain and ties individual users to their purchases during each visit.
Now retailers are going a step further. They want to understand what customers do inside the store. A consortium of major retailers (including Walmart, Coca Cola and P&G) is testing a system that uses infrared rays to track which exact aisle shoppers visited and which ones they ignored. This will help them refine their in-store marketing initiatives like aisle displays or for buying ads on in-store TV networks.

Do you think this is a bit intrusive?