From the day the news that Haggen was going to replace the Boulder City Vons was announced, there was quite a bit of concern that the prices would be more than people were comfortable with.
Since the complaints haven’t subsided, at least from what I’ve read on other Facebook pages and/or groups in the past few months, I thought it would be a fabulous idea to do a “secret shopper” price comparison … the results, methods and specific data are below!
In each of my price comparisons (I’ve done two using these same products) – Haggen has been less expensive than Albertsons both times. Surprised? Because I was!
- I made my first price comparison last month, but got busy and didn’t have time to make the imagery and post it while those prices were still in effect, so I decided to return to both stores yesterday (August 14th, 2015) and re-do the comparison.
- I had a single piece of notebook paper and filled it up, initially having 29 products – but I had to drop the bag of Peanut M&M’s because the stores didn’t both carry the bag size I’d selected … so the comparison is now of only 28 products.
- I chose only national brands and I included no meat or produce because prices and grade can vary too much on those. I did include Anderson 2% milk since both stores carry it.
- There was no rhyme nor reason to the brands I selected, except that I tried to create a very diverse sampling of products — from Wonder Bread and 2% Milk to Pampers and Hormel Chili.
- I did not count discount prices when I would have had to buy more than one to get the lower price (i.e. ‘2 for $5 when you buy 2’ or X% off when you buy 4). But for reference, I have included information about the additional discount opportunity in footnotes at the bottom of my grid for you.
So, without further delay — the price comparison list is below — with some additional comments I have beneath it:
(Please CLICK HERE to open a larger PDF version)
Additional Thoughts & Take-Aways
- July’s comparison still had Haggen as having the lower prices and in fact, the margin was even greater than it was yesterday – primarily because two items that are currently on sale at Albertsons (Maxwell House Coffee and Barefoot Pinot Grigio) weren’t on sale during my first price check. These are REALLY good sales that helped narrow the gap considerably (literally, it helped Albertsons pick up $7 because their regular price on the wine is $15.99 compared to Haggen’s $8.99 regular price).
- Albertsons seems to have ‘bigger and better sale promotions’ than Haggen does — if neither store were having any sales at all and you bought everything on my list — the gap between the regular prices is $15.58 (Haggen being cheaper). But since sale prices were in effect yesterday at both stores, the gap was only $4.71 (Haggen still being cheaper).
- So … if you are an ad watcher / sale shopper and especially if you are willing to buy multiple items to get a bigger discount — you can do pretty well at Albertsons (assuming you bought these products, of course) — but you would have done a little better at Haggen.
- If you don’t watch the sales though and are more of a ‘convenience shopper’ (just running to the market as you needed these things) and your timing didn’t match sales — the regular price you’d have paid for these items would have been significantly less at Haggen.
And there you have it – – both Albertsons and Haggen are great stores and they offer different things – – so I hope this adventure helps dispel some of the negativity about Haggen’s pricing … it proved less expensive in both of my tests (and I think I’ll do another one in the next month on totally different products, just for pure interest)!
A Final Note
And here’s something new to consider: Yesterday afternoon (August 14, 2015), Haggen’s corporate office announced the closing of 27 stores (link here … none in Nevada so far) — so if we would like to continue to have two supermarkets in Boulder City to choose from, the best thing we can do is follow Facebook Fan Natalie French Cowdrey’s policy (which she posted it on the Facebook page yesterday):
“I shop at both…I think we should spread the love.”