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The ancient art of shopping

By Kim Fischer - 12 May 2016 23

Shopping

Shopping is one of humanity’s oldest pleasures. From ancient Greek agoras to Roman markets to the Turkish Bazaar of the Middle Ages and the modern day shopping mall, people have always liked to come together to shop.

Originally, markets sold food and other essentials as well as luxuries. We still see echoes of these all-in-one destinations in the farmers’ markets in places like Hall, EPIC in Mitchell, CIT in Phillip, and Tuggeranong.

But with the rise of self-service supermarkets, shopping has split into two experiences: the mostly mundane chore of filling up a trolley of household goods, versus the enjoyable experience of “going shopping” which still represents the larger experience of being out in public of a crowd and seeing lots of things to buy.

As you might imagine, the psychology of both kinds of shoppers are studied closely by the corporations that own the supermarkets and shopping malls.

To take one example: milk is one of the most commonly purchased items in the supermarket, but it is always put right at the back of the supermarket to force shoppers to walk past more items on the shelves. This increases the likelihood that shoppers will “remember” other things that need be bought. The same principle applies to the impulse buy items placed at the register. There is a reason why “make a shopping list and stick to it” is commonly cited as a money-saving trick.

The design of shopping malls similarly incorporate a series of clever psychological ploys to convince you to spend the cash in your wallet:

  • Interiors are always designed with lots of mirrors and other highly-reflective surfaces to make shoppers conscious of how they look.
  • Mannequins encourage people to see themselves wearing the displayed clothes
  • Escalators are mostly oriented away from exits so that shoppers have to walk past more stores on the way to and from their cars.
  • Stores are mostly glass facades to make it easy to see the shopping going on inside, whether it is someone booking a holiday or a family being fitted out with shoes.

Even with the rise of online shopping, physical shops don’t appear to be going away soon. However, the emphasis is shifting to storefronts as a way to advertise, gain customer loyalty and deliver a “shopping experience”. For example, both the Apple stores and Peter Alexander sleepwear stores are designed to evoke a specific sense of “space”, whether sleek and high-tech or playful and child-like.

Local shops are still important too, encouraging greater physical activity for nearby residents and providing a sense of community and “place” that is simply missing from our globalised and homogenous shopping centres. People may be able to find a recognisable McDonalds store anywhere in the world, but the experience of visiting Little Oink in Cook or the local hairdressers in Florey is both unique and personal.

To thrive however, local shops need reasons for people to visit and to stay. Play equipment, good coffee, and a hairdresser all do wonders in building regular and sustained traffic to shops. This then provides the incentive for other professions like butchers, accountants, and therapists to move in and attract local clients.

How do you choose when and where to shop?

Kim Fischer is an ACT Labor candidate for the seat of Ginninderra in the 2016 ACT Legislative Assembly election. If you live in Belconnen and have 3 minutes, please complete her survey on local shops and facilities.

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23 Responses to
The ancient art of shopping
1
dungfungus 5:13 pm
26 Oct 16
#

While in Woolworths Erindale today I noticed newer looking shopping trolleys with the locking and chain mechanism that we all have dealt with at Aldi and Canberra airport.

On making enquiries I was informed that new legislation passed means that as from 1st November 2016 all supermarkets in Canberra will have to use this system although no reason was given to me as to “why?”

It will cost us $2.00 each time we need a trolley at the strorage area from then but I am sure there will still be lots of them left in the carpark which will be free.

Anyone out there know what it is all about? Sounds like another crazy Green initiative to me.

2
TuggLife 10:25 pm
26 Oct 16
#

We still see echoes of these all-in-one destinations in the farmers’ markets in places like Hall, EPIC in Mitchell, CIT in Phillip, and Tuggeranong.

Kim, you need to come visit southside more. The Tuggeranong homestead market isn’t much of a farmer’s market, and the Southside Farmer’s Market moved from CIT to Canberra College earlier this year.

Having good local shops is so important to a suburb – it was a big factor for us when looking to buy a house in Canberra. Why have some flourished so much while others have died? Back northside, compare Florey to Page – they are next to each other, but the shopping complexes are worlds apart.

3
JC 11:25 pm
26 Oct 16
#

dungfungus said :

While in Woolworths Erindale today I noticed newer looking shopping trolleys with the locking and chain mechanism that we all have dealt with at Aldi and Canberra airport.

On making enquiries I was informed that new legislation passed means that as from 1st November 2016 all supermarkets in Canberra will have to use this system although no reason was given to me as to “why?”

It will cost us $2.00 each time we need a trolley at the strorage area from then but I am sure there will still be lots of them left in the carpark which will be free.

Anyone out there know what it is all about? Sounds like another crazy Green initiative to me.

It is a deposit. You get your money back if you can be bothered to take your trolley back to the trolley bay.

And don’t think there is any law change. For some time now supermarkets have been fined for abandonded trolleys and many put in place deposit schemes to encourage trolley return, guess Woolies Erindale is now just impliemting it.

4
creative_canberran 1:10 am
27 Oct 16
#

Enjoyable experience – what is this enjoyable experience of shopping you speak of? Unhelpful staff, terrible range, average prices.

Was in a local music equipment store last month, willing to drop $300. They knew that, but still just said what they had was all that was available, even told me what I was after wasn’t made. Went online, found it, bought it from the US. Same brand, $50 more than the model the local store had. Similar experiences with tech, books, so on.

As for the Apple Store, article kind of misses the point. Apple stores are minimalist, that’s been a feature since the first generation stores and was taken to an extreme with the second generation stores. But their main goal was to be church like and very busy/crowded. And overseas to be community hubs. Now we see the third generation store designs about to roll out and they abandon the extreme minimalism for a new design that adds natural elements, but importantly, blurs the line between the inside and outside of the shop.

5
dungfungus 7:47 am
27 Oct 16
#

JC said :

dungfungus said :

While in Woolworths Erindale today I noticed newer looking shopping trolleys with the locking and chain mechanism that we all have dealt with at Aldi and Canberra airport.

On making enquiries I was informed that new legislation passed means that as from 1st November 2016 all supermarkets in Canberra will have to use this system although no reason was given to me as to “why?”

It will cost us $2.00 each time we need a trolley at the strorage area from then but I am sure there will still be lots of them left in the carpark which will be free.

Anyone out there know what it is all about? Sounds like another crazy Green initiative to me.

It is a deposit. You get your money back if you can be bothered to take your trolley back to the trolley bay.

And don’t think there is any law change. For some time now supermarkets have been fined for abandonded trolleys and many put in place deposit schemes to encourage trolley return, guess Woolies Erindale is now just impliemting it.

We are all aware what the $2 is for.

According to Access Canberra, it is an offence in the ACT to remove a trolley from a shopping centre or to use or leave a trolley outside a shopping centre precinct. This would appear to refer to the shoppers, not the supermarket.

So, why are the supermarkets being fined and do you have proof of these fines?

6
chewy14 9:11 am
27 Oct 16
#

JC said :

dungfungus said :

While in Woolworths Erindale today I noticed newer looking shopping trolleys with the locking and chain mechanism that we all have dealt with at Aldi and Canberra airport.

On making enquiries I was informed that new legislation passed means that as from 1st November 2016 all supermarkets in Canberra will have to use this system although no reason was given to me as to “why?”

It will cost us $2.00 each time we need a trolley at the strorage area from then but I am sure there will still be lots of them left in the carpark which will be free.

Anyone out there know what it is all about? Sounds like another crazy Green initiative to me.

It is a deposit. You get your money back if you can be bothered to take your trolley back to the trolley bay.

And don’t think there is any law change. For some time now supermarkets have been fined for abandonded trolleys and many put in place deposit schemes to encourage trolley return, guess Woolies Erindale is now just impliemting it.

Nah, I think they did change the law so that it’s an offence for supermarkets to keep their trolleys within their own shopping precinct but that the offence isn’t applicable if they install a containment system such as the deposit scheme.

I’ve seen a few supermarkets rolling them out recently.

7
pink little birdie 9:24 am
27 Oct 16
#

dungfungus said :

JC said :

dungfungus said :

While in Woolworths Erindale today I noticed newer looking shopping trolleys with the locking and chain mechanism that we all have dealt with at Aldi and Canberra airport.

On making enquiries I was informed that new legislation passed means that as from 1st November 2016 all supermarkets in Canberra will have to use this system although no reason was given to me as to “why?”

It will cost us $2.00 each time we need a trolley at the strorage area from then but I am sure there will still be lots of them left in the carpark which will be free.

Anyone out there know what it is all about? Sounds like another crazy Green initiative to me.

It is a deposit. You get your money back if you can be bothered to take your trolley back to the trolley bay.

And don’t think there is any law change. For some time now supermarkets have been fined for abandonded trolleys and many put in place deposit schemes to encourage trolley return, guess Woolies Erindale is now just impliemting it.

We are all aware what the $2 is for.

According to Access Canberra, it is an offence in the ACT to remove a trolley from a shopping centre or to use or leave a trolley outside a shopping centre precinct. This would appear to refer to the shoppers, not the supermarket.

So, why are the supermarkets being fined and do you have proof of these fines?

http://www.tccs.act.gov.au/territory-services/city_rangers/changes_to_shopping_trolley_legislation_litter_act_2004

Also it is annoying to send shopping trolley collectors out of the shopping centre precinct.
Also I believe it is quite expensive to buy each commercial shopping trolley.

8
Maya123 9:45 am
27 Oct 16
#

I have noticed certain houses and blocks of flats with what looks like a trolley graveyard out the front. You can see in those instances who’s stealing them.

9
dungfungus 12:01 pm
27 Oct 16
#

pink little birdie said :

dungfungus said :

JC said :

dungfungus said :

While in Woolworths Erindale today I noticed newer looking shopping trolleys with the locking and chain mechanism that we all have dealt with at Aldi and Canberra airport.

On making enquiries I was informed that new legislation passed means that as from 1st November 2016 all supermarkets in Canberra will have to use this system although no reason was given to me as to “why?”

It will cost us $2.00 each time we need a trolley at the strorage area from then but I am sure there will still be lots of them left in the carpark which will be free.

Anyone out there know what it is all about? Sounds like another crazy Green initiative to me.

It is a deposit. You get your money back if you can be bothered to take your trolley back to the trolley bay.

And don’t think there is any law change. For some time now supermarkets have been fined for abandonded trolleys and many put in place deposit schemes to encourage trolley return, guess Woolies Erindale is now just impliemting it.

We are all aware what the $2 is for.

According to Access Canberra, it is an offence in the ACT to remove a trolley from a shopping centre or to use or leave a trolley outside a shopping centre precinct. This would appear to refer to the shoppers, not the supermarket.

So, why are the supermarkets being fined and do you have proof of these fines?

http://www.tccs.act.gov.au/territory-services/city_rangers/changes_to_shopping_trolley_legislation_litter_act_2004

Also it is annoying to send shopping trolley collectors out of the shopping centre precinct.
Also I believe it is quite expensive to buy each commercial shopping trolley.

Clearly, this isn’t working.

The person I spoke to at Woolworths was adamant that new rules were applying from 1st November 2016.

Maybe the existing rules still apply but the government is going to enforce them for a change.

10
dungfungus 12:07 pm
27 Oct 16
#

Maya123 said :

I have noticed certain houses and blocks of flats with what looks like a trolley graveyard out the front. You can see in those instances who’s stealing them.

I think I can explain that situation which occurs mainly at public housing estates.

The tenants aren’t stealing the trolleys, otherwise they would be concealed and let’s face it, who would want to buy a hot trolley?

Instead, these trolleys are used to transport the groceries from the supermarket and then a trolley is pushed back empty the next time they go to the same supermarket.

My elderly mother did this for years when she lived in a retirement cluster at Macquarie.

Denying the elderly of this use of these trolleys would not be a good look for the government.

11
Maya123 7:04 pm
27 Oct 16
#

dungfungus said :

Maya123 said :

I have noticed certain houses and blocks of flats with what looks like a trolley graveyard out the front. You can see in those instances who’s stealing them.

I think I can explain that situation which occurs mainly at public housing estates.

The tenants aren’t stealing the trolleys, otherwise they would be concealed and let’s face it, who would want to buy a hot trolley?

Instead, these trolleys are used to transport the groceries from the supermarket and then a trolley is pushed back empty the next time they go to the same supermarket.

My elderly mother did this for years when she lived in a retirement cluster at Macquarie.

Denying the elderly of this use of these trolleys would not be a good look for the government.

No, many trolleys end up being shoved is creeks and the like. No plan to reuse them. Especially the houses with a collection outside. It appears those trolleys don’t go back. I mean, how many do they ‘need’? I see people pushing laden trolleys home, but I can’t ever remember seeing them pushing empty trolleys back to the supermarket. If a trolley is taken away from the supermarket and not returned, ie dumped, I see that as stealing. To say it isn’t, is like saying the joy rider who takes a car and then dumps it somewhere is not stealing.

12
Lurker2913 7:43 pm
27 Oct 16
#

Maya123 said :

. . . trolleys are used to transport the groceries from the supermarket and then a trolley is pushed back empty the next time they go to the same supermarket.

My elderly mother did this for years when she lived in a retirement cluster at Macquarie.

I understand the need to transport groceries home but the trolley should be immediately returned to the supermarket.

If anyone wants to keep a trolley in their garage they should buy their own. I reckon there would be a market for a full size trolley with a seat and a small motor. Both carless hipsters and old people would love it.

13
pink little birdie 1:15 am
28 Oct 16
#

dungfungus said :

Maya123 said :

I have noticed certain houses and blocks of flats with what looks like a trolley graveyard out the front. You can see in those instances who’s stealing them.

I think I can explain that situation which occurs mainly at public housing estates.

The tenants aren’t stealing the trolleys, otherwise they would be concealed and let’s face it, who would want to buy a hot trolley?

Instead, these trolleys are used to transport the groceries from the supermarket and then a trolley is pushed back empty the next time they go to the same supermarket.

My elderly mother did this for years when she lived in a retirement cluster at Macquarie.

Denying the elderly of this use of these trolleys would not be a good look for the government.

There are plenty of options to buy your own shopping cart or trolley and have been for many years. Kind of jerky to wheel one home and not return it immediately even if you live close.

When I lived in Aranda there were occasions where there were no trolleys in the supermarket it was really irritating. It also happens frequently in Coles Belconnen where there are no trolleys in the supermarket.
Also there is quite a few trolleys pulled out of the lakes every Clean up Australia day.
Also the new legislation might be the end of the period where the transition to deposit systems are compulsory

14
dungfungus 9:19 am
28 Oct 16
#

pink little birdie said :

dungfungus said :

Maya123 said :

I have noticed certain houses and blocks of flats with what looks like a trolley graveyard out the front. You can see in those instances who’s stealing them.

I think I can explain that situation which occurs mainly at public housing estates.

The tenants aren’t stealing the trolleys, otherwise they would be concealed and let’s face it, who would want to buy a hot trolley?

Instead, these trolleys are used to transport the groceries from the supermarket and then a trolley is pushed back empty the next time they go to the same supermarket.

My elderly mother did this for years when she lived in a retirement cluster at Macquarie.

Denying the elderly of this use of these trolleys would not be a good look for the government.

There are plenty of options to buy your own shopping cart or trolley and have been for many years. Kind of jerky to wheel one home and not return it immediately even if you live close.

When I lived in Aranda there were occasions where there were no trolleys in the supermarket it was really irritating. It also happens frequently in Coles Belconnen where there are no trolleys in the supermarket.
Also there is quite a few trolleys pulled out of the lakes every Clean up Australia day.
Also the new legislation might be the end of the period where the transition to deposit systems are compulsory

You expect others to buy their own shopping trolleys but you don’t do it yourself.

Then you whinge when there aren’t any at your supermarket.

Give me a break!

15
dungfungus 9:20 am
28 Oct 16
#

Lurker2913 said :

Maya123 said :

. . . trolleys are used to transport the groceries from the supermarket and then a trolley is pushed back empty the next time they go to the same supermarket.

My elderly mother did this for years when she lived in a retirement cluster at Macquarie.

I understand the need to transport groceries home but the trolley should be immediately returned to the supermarket.

If anyone wants to keep a trolley in their garage they should buy their own. I reckon there would be a market for a full size trolley with a seat and a small motor. Both carless hipsters and old people would love it.

“I understand the need to transport groceries home but the trolley should be immediately returned to the supermarket.”

Try and tell that to the elderly.

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