Bye bye Brand Match – Sainbury’s price comparison with Asda hits the dust

Sainbury’s price compari-gone

So farewell then Brand Match. Sainsbury’s has announced that from the end of April it is no longer going to compare prices with Asda for customers who buy ten or more items. It says that this is because we shoppers are less likely to buy 10 or more items in the stores. Hmmmmm…
supermarketMaybe they should look at their research more closely. If we are all filling our baskets and trolleys with only nine items they are in trouble. It could be because the store is also ending its Bogof – buy one get one free – offers that persuaded customers to buy more than they needed. We may also be buying less because we do not believe that, week in and week out, their prices are cheaper than Asda.

Am I bovvered?

It’s also a faff. When Brand Match was launched in 2011 lots of customers complained that they had to return to the store to get the money off their next shop – if they went back within a fortnight and remembered to take the tiny slip of paper with them.

Not worth the paper the Brand Match was written on

For several months now I have been surprised to be told that my shop was always cheaper than Asda.
I have even saved one receipt from last month for 29 items totalling £50.50, which the store told me was £11.06 cheaper than Asda. I acknowledge that I bought two boxes of 19 Ariel washing pods at £4 each instead of falling for 38 for £10. But online the soy sauce, unsalted butter, tinned mushrooms were cheaper at Asda. Even the sales assistant was amused at the unlikely workings of the comparison computer.

Where next?

Here at Money Fight Club we’ll be watching prices closely. Customers want value and straightforward pricing. Lidl and Aldi can manage it. Personally, we’d like to see the enforced end of yo-yo pricing and offers on aisle ends that are actually more expensive than the items in the aisles.
My particular bugbear is a popular brand of mayonnaise that costs £2 for 800ml for several weeks while the 600ml jar next to it is on sale for £2.50. Suddenly, the big jar costs £3, while the 600ml is still £2.50. This price cycle has been going on for at least 12 months and is nothing to do with the price of production. There are lots of similar cycles and the patterns are so regular that I can predict when it will be worth looking at the mayonnaise shelf without checking.
And don’t get me started on the 18 big value loo rolls at £6.65 when next to them there is a pack of nine costing £3!


Tesco is continuing with its brand guarantee for customers who buy ten different products if they would be cheaper at Asda, Morrison’s or Sainsbury’s. If it would be cheaper at the other stores customers get the money taken off the bill then and there – so long as they have one branded item and at least ten different items. Ten cans of baked beans do not qualify.
We still have to watch closely the prices we pay. There are mobile apps that will compare prices. And remember that even the discounters and pound shops are not always cheap. You have to compare the sizes. Sometimes a cheap store will charge a lot for a popular brand. Stores have also been known to get manufacturers to produce misleading sized bottles and packs.