Kroger vs. Walmart

The debate happened with two of my co-workers the other day.  i kept trying to defend my beloved Kroger, but the same refrain kept coming back from them: “You just can’t beat those Walmart prices!” Like nails on a chalkboard to my ears…

Sometimes i tend to be against large corporations- or, at least, against the largest ones, but Walmart is the one that tops all the others. It’s not that i’m crazed with “buying local” or that i hate all business; in fact, i genuinely like shopping at Kroger, even though i know that it’s also one of the largest grocery chains in the U.S.

i guess i’ve developed a certain bitterness toward Walmart, and it may only be because of a string of bad experiences with them (perhaps the worst experience involved finding the contents of a diaper smeared on the wall of a fitting room…but that was 10 years ago).  After that conversation with my coworkers, though, i had to figure out some more, uh, concrete reasons  for disliking Walmart. The reasons came quickly enough- so quickly that this blog post got much longer than i wanted it to be, and i am probably going to have to chop it up into installments.  My reasons steer clear of the traditional political/economic reasons or any major-headline issues Walmart may or may not have dealt with in the past- these are focused on my own observations and what i, as a consumer, expect from the stores. Yep, 10 installments sounds good. 10 reasons why i  hate Walmart choose Kroger over Walmart.

Kroger vs. Walmart

#10. Web and Mobile Features

You may not think that this is very important. i didn’t either, until i started using Kroger’s app on my Android and realized what a life-changer it was.

Kroger allows me to log in with my Kroger membership card and create an account for the web/mobile app. The home page of the app has the following categories: Weekly Ad, Coupons, Rewards, List, Rx Refills, and FAQ. Clean and simple. i can download digital coupons straight to my card- and they will automatically activate when i buy the items and use my Kroger card at checkout. i need this. i am terrible at remembering to bring coupons, let alone remembering to give them to the cashier. The other especially great thing about the Kroger app is that i can create a shopping list on my phone. Guess what else is added to this shopping list? My digital coupons. And that helps my forgetful self to remember to get the food items that i loaded the coupons for in the first place. The weekly ad feature is good news for Walmart shoppers- download this app and you can check Kroger’s ad while you’re in Walmart.

Best feature:  Besides having everything so accessible, Kroger has a section on their web site dedicated to gluten-free diet and includes a comprehensive list of Kroger brand products and whether they are gluten-free (Walmart has no such list).

Worst feature: No ability to order cakes/deli orders online (Walmart does not have this option either but some grocery stores do)

Walmart has an app, too, which i downloaded just to be fair in writing this. Naturally, they immediately asked if I want to receive notifications from them. No, i do not. Anyway, it does take some time to load, but it’s straightforward and usable with only a few links at the beginning, though they do manage to throw in their “Value of the Day’ advertisement at the top. There are a lot of useful items, i’ll give it that. i did manage to find a shopping list function on the normal site after googling “Walmart shopping list”. i still haven’t found the link through Walmart’s site.  Because Walmart does not have a shopper’s card (it’s a mystery to me why they don’t- these benefit the stores too, not just customers), you can’t download digital coupons. i don’t know if they have any printable coupons, but i didn’t see any links for them on the home page of the app or the site, so if they do have them, they take too much time and effort for me to use.

Best feature: You can order groceries online. Who wouldn’t want to do that?

Worst feature: Like their store, Walmart’s site makes it take too long for me to get to where i’m going and find what i need. . .

 

Keep a lookout for the next 9 chapters of my rant over the next few weeks…

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