Now a much-loved stalwart of the British high street, Sainsbury’s has a long and remarkable history. For nearly 150 years, Sainsbury’s has provided the British public with quality foodstuffs at huge discounts, and has grown to become among the largest supermarket chains in the united kingdom.
Featuring its huge network of supermarkets, hypermarkets and convenience stores across the country, almost everybody in the UK has a Sainsbury’s close by. Its well-recognised branding has come to define the British supermarket experience – but did you know that without Sainsbury’s, supermarkets could be completely different to the evergreen high street features that we know and love today? Actually, without Mysainsburys, the self-service supermarket might not exist in any way.
The reason being Sainsbury’s pioneered the notion – in the UK, a minimum of – of getting your personal grocery items and paying when you were prepared to leave the store. Before this, a shop assistant would collect the goods for your benefit. Before self-service stores existed, customers didn’t have the freedom to browse around supermarkets shelves like they actually do today.
When Sainsbury’s opened its first self-service store, customers were suddenly in a position to shop at their particular pace, and store employees were free to concentrate on serving customers and taking payments. The entire shopping process was quickened significantly, and as the self-service supermarket model required all available stock to be displayed, supermarkets became larger – resembling something close to the Sainsbury’s supermarkets which are so familiar today.
Sainsbury’s have also been among the first supermarkets to provide own-brand goods – these could be supplied in a lower price than goods that were bought-in from third-party manufacturers. But because the manufacturing process was managed by Sainsbury’s itself, the product quality was comparable – otherwise better – than many national brands. The first Sainsbury’s own-brand product was bacon, which arrived in early 1880s. The modernist-inspired types of the retailer’s own-label products which were utilised from the early 1960s for the late 1970s have become recognised as classics in the field of retail graphic design.
John James Sainsbury opened the initial Sainsburys store in Drury Lane, London in 1869. The company soon won over many customers using its innovative branding and focus on detail – whilst other stores had saw dust floors and counters produced from wood, Sainsbury’s created a higher-class shopping knowledge about mosaic-tiled floors, white walls and marble counters. Sainbury’s created consistency across its brand, years before this was the standard, by installing gold-leaf ‘J. Sainsbury’ signs on its stores. These tactics ecbgwb well, and also the company quickly expanded.
Throughout the Second World War, Sainbury’s – like most other businesses during wartime – fell on hard times. After the War, however, Sainsbury’s begun to pick up speed again, and once it became a public limited company in 1973, it achieved the largest flotation ever on the London stock exchange.
Today, Sainsbury’s is still one of many UK’s most widely used supermarkets, with its leap into internet shopping and dedication to offering fair trade goods, it consistently innovate in to the new century.