Reporting David Highfield
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It’s a growing trend, more and more men doing the family grocery shopping.
But ladies, you should know something before you send your man to the store, something that will save you money: men shop very differently than women.
The bottom line is, when it comes to grocery shopping in general, experts say men have some shopping habits that could end up costing your family money.
Go to the supermarket these days and you’ll see more and more men, but that doesn’t mean the women in their lives are necessarily thrilled about it.
One study found that 31 percent of men are now the primary grocery shoppers; another put it at 51 percent.
“Men tend to spend significantly more at grocery shopping than women because they aren’t planning and they don’t have the coupons,” says Audrey Guskey, a marketing professor at Duquesne University.
Guskey also says men are less likely to stick to a list, if they have one at all.
“There’s no comparison, men are definitely impulse buying,” says Guskey.
While it doesn’t happen in Pennsylvania, she says some stores put diapers and beer next to each other for that very reason.
“They have found if the guys are going out at midnight to grab some diapers that they need for the baby, if the beer is right next door, they’ll grab a six pack as well,” Guskey said.
She says guys like buying prepared food, which is often more expensive.
“And a lot of times, they’re also very brand focused,” she added.
As a result, they will pass over store brands for more expensive name brands.
So, you add all these costly habits up and Guskey, very diplomatically, says women just have more experience grocery shopping.
But men of Pittsburgh – there’s one guy who can stand up for all men in the face of this research. His name is Tim McCarthy.
“I really don’t like having her along because she will throw all these things in, and I have my limit,” says McCarthy.
He does the shopping, as well as the cooking for that matter, and he does everything right – sets a limit, clips coupons and sticks to the list.
However, his wife Tracey calls herself the impulse buyer.
Tim has always done the shopping in their family, and Tracey knows she’s got a good thing going on.
“Oh, incredibly lucky, in fact I don’t talk about this much to my friends because they’d be so jealous,” she says.
Stores and manufacturers market more to men now. There’s more shelf space devoted to men’s grooming products and some stores go even further.
“Procter & Gamble came up with a great idea,” says Guskey. “They have a man’s aisle and they have all kinds of men’s toiletry products.”
All the more reason that Guskey says unless you’re married to a Tim McCarthy, you may want to give your man some instructions if he’s headed to the store.
“Have this list, have this plan, give them coupons, tell them specific things, give them perhaps a store flier with the product circled,” she says.
Procter & Gamble also now has a website called “Man of the House,” which gives men everything from cooking tips to relationship advice.