We interviewed consumers about their shopping experiences at Market Basket. Here’s what they said about the stores they frequent.
Sue Ellen, North Andover, Mass.: The No. 1 reason I shop at Market Basket is for price, and the No. 2 reason is that I like the staff being so well trained. If you ask a kid where something is, he stops what he’s doing and takes you there. And if it’s not there, he’ll go out back and find it for you. If they could improve anything, it would be to start making stores smaller. I am so sick of big stores. But I don’t like Instacart because I want to pick my own produce and when you are in the store, you might see something on special and come up with a good meal plan. Their private label is the same quality as the brands, and it’s cheaper. Sometimes it’s hard to get their milk and I buy Hood. I make my own pierogies using farmer’s cheese I buy at Market Basket, but a lot of supermarkets don’t carry it. The only other place I know that carries it is Whole Foods, but I won’t go there unless I have to.
‘The No. 1 reason I shop at Market Basket is for price, and the No. 2 reason is that I like the staff being so well trained.’
Kristen, Concord, N.H.: We shop there mostly for price, but the store layouts are simple so it’s easy to find things.
They have lots of signs and they don’t separate out a lot of specialty products — everything’s all together. The stores are also very clean — they’re sticklers for that. Market Basket milk isn’t always in stock. It’s always fresh because it sells out so often. The quality and price are great. In frozen, there’s good variety — I buy Lean Cuisine meals because I can take them on the go and to work. I love Amy’s also. The store brands are really good. I wish they had more natural creamers. Hannaford has more natural ones without a lot of chemicals. You always see management walking around. One thing the Demoulas family believes in is having customers seeing and being able to talk with management.
Susan, Newburyport, Mass: Price is the No. 1 reason I shop there. They’re the best on that, although it’d be nice if they did BOGOs once in awhile. They have good selection of products, both their own brands and the big national brands. And they’re in stock more than at other retailers. They’re stocking shelves all the time, and I know that helps. I just wish they wouldn’t do it during the day and crowd up the aisles. In frozen food, their signs above the cases actually match the product, which doesn’t happen at other retailers all the time. It’s easy to find things, the way they separate out the products. They’re also great on healthy and organic foods, which they intersperse with everything else. That just makes more sense. They stock their own brand of one of my favorite things: chive cottage cheese. I can’t get it anywhere else.
Patrick, Seabrook, N.H.: I shop there because of price and because there are two of them between my office and my house. Other supermarkets are nowhere near as good on price, and I think all the supermarkets carry the same stuff anyway — at least the stuff I eat. If I could improve anything, it would be on having more registers open, like everyone else, I suppose. They could go a level up on produce. I like Shaw’s better for produce. I don’t buy a lot of organic or natural; I think it’s all the same stuff and it’s not a big deal to me. Their store brands are good. I’ve always known shoppers are very loyal to Market Basket. When there was that big family fight over ownership some years back, employees went on strike and shoppers boycotted them. You wouldn’t find that many places.