Many supermarkets use persuasion tactics to increase revenue and increase the time that shoppers stay in the store and to make more impulse buys. One strategy supermarkets make is to put the most profitable items at eye-level for consumers.
The Colonial Study was a field study which found that the number of items consumers picked up which were placed at eye level surpassed those which were at “floor level” or “waist level” (Curham, 1973). The sales at floor level were 57% of those at eye level and the sales at waist level were 74% of those at eye level. It can be seen in the image above that the cheapest biscuits are on the lowest shelves and the more expensive “Fox’s” and “Fingers” are put at eye-level.
In addition some shops put toys or things of interest to young children much lower down so it is at their eye-level.
This can be understood through the persuasive tactic of mere exposure effect (Zajong, 1968) where people develop positive feelings for things they see more often. Items places at eye-level have increased exposure to a consumer whether they are looking for the item or not.
Curhan, R. C. (1973). Shelf space allocation and profit maximization in mass retailing. The Journal of Marketing, 54-60.
Zajong, R. B. (1968). The attitudinal effects of mere exposure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Monograph Supplement, 9, 1-27.