Breaking news! It’s not just women steering carts around — men can go to the grocery store and shop for food. And they don’t want to be marketed to like they’re females, which means companies are learning how to skew ads and create grocery aisles specifically devoted to men.
The Chicago Tribune does a bit of digging, citing consumer-research firm GfK MRI and an ESPN report that says 31 percent of men nationwide were the primary household grocery shoppers in 2011. That’s an entire 14 percent more than in 1985. Other studies say it could be even more, as much as 51 percent of men being the primary shoppers.
We’re seeing more men doing grocery shopping and more young dads cooking with their kids as a way to bond with them at home,” said Phil Lempert, a supermarket consultant. “It’s very different from the whole metrosexual phenomenon of six, seven, eight years ago, but a much more down-to-earth (approach), not trying to show off, but trying to be part of the family.”
In fact, some stores are so excited to welcome men into the annals of grocery shopping fame that they’re trying out “man aisles” in certain Walmart, Target and Walgreens stores. These special aisles are designed to make men more comfortable with the shopping experience and easy store navigation, apparently because men have “little patience searching for lotion and body wash, especially when weaving through contingents of women and teenage girls.”
Poor men! Good thing they can now feel more comfortable picking up bodywash, bananas and a gallon of milk. Otherwise how would they ever be able to step into a grocery store?
More men taking the reins of the cart [Chicago Tribune]