Shopping the Bottom Shelf to Save
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Shopping the Bottom Shelf to Save

Posted on Tuesday, August 9th, 2011 at 10:12 am
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An item’s shelf placement can actually determine its price. This means, shopping the bottom shelf can actually save money because manufacturers pay stores for eye-level and top shelf spots, leaving the bottom shelf for those products without sponsorship. You’ve probably noticed that the eye-level shelves almost always house the high-priced name brand products. While the top shelf items aren’t as expensive as the eye-level items, the bottom shelf is where the real deals are at. If you look down to the bottom shelves, you’ll find better bargains.


What You Will Find on the Bottom Shelf

Here are some common bottom shelf items that will help you save money:

  • Generic and store brands.
  • Off-brands (such as off-brand bagged cereal or snacks).
  • Bulk items (such as rice). Of course, only buy in bulk if you are going to use it.
  • Inexpensive canned goods.
  • Clearance items.
  • Soon-to-be discontinued items.


However, don’t assume all bottom shelf items are cheaper. These bottom shelf items may actually cost more:

  • Toys, candy, and snacks that appeals to kids – the bottom shelf is perfect eye-level placement for these little customers!
  • Premium items that only appeal to a small number of customers, such as premium vegan or organic foods, for example.


To ensure you are choosing the best deal, remember to double check the unit price of the items you are considering buying. Checking the bottom shelf can save up to 50% in some cases!

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Good Tip: Saving money is important – especially if you have a lot of expenses like bills to pay, loans to pay off, and all the other things that drain your bank account. Figuring out a way to save money can feel tedious to some, and like a punishment to others. U.S. News suggests that you try one of these money saving challenges. The “No Eating Out for a Month” Challenge This one is self-explanatory. The goal is to avoid eating out for an entire month. This might be super easy for people who enjoy making meals at home. People who really enjoy dining out, or ordering food to be sent to their home, may struggle with this one. It’s worth a try because spending money on take-out is more expensive than buying groceries. The Pantry Challenge This one is a variation of the “No Eating Out for a Month” challenge. The goal is to use up all of your groceries before you buy more. It forces you to try and remember why you bought a food or beverage that you don’t know what to do with, and gives you the opportunity to find a way to use it. The one exemption to this challenge is the foods that have expired. Don’t eat them! Throw them in the trash. The “No Spend” Challenge Make a goal to avoid spending money during an entire weekend. The only exemption in this challenge is that you are allowed to pay bills. This challenge is interesting because it requires creativity. You must be creative and find workarounds for problems that you would typically solve by spending money. You may have a different outlook on spending after finishing this challenge.