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Which supermarket will get your big Christmas shop?

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As a working parent I confess I rely on the home delivery shops for my weekly groceries. But I’m not the most loyal customer! I have accounts with Sainsbury, ASDA, Tesco and Ocado. The dilemma is which one will I choose to deliver that all important shop – the Christmas one? Here, my opinion of the the pros and cons of each supermarket … shopping

ASDA

Website: One of the easiest to navigate with lists of what you’ve bought before.
Drivers: Very polite but more inclined to drive off with some of your food still on their van than others. Most likely of the supermarkets to bring you squashed bread or broken eggs.
Booking slots: Reasonable delivery charges and easy slot booking.
Pros: Very good products – good range of basic and more premium products at competitive prices.
Products: All the basics with some excellent good quality own value products. Great fresh fish and deli products available online (they are not available online with all supermarkets.) They also have a good range of bakery products and ready meals, which are again good quality and well priced.
Cost: Very competitive on price and good value.
Cons: There often seems to be an odd substitution or they will send just one item when you ordered two. Groceries are not always as fresh as they could be and two packs of the same item will often have wildly different ‘use by’ dates on. So one pack of meat must be eaten the next day and the other the next week, which means you have to freeze one… Unfortunately on occasion not delivered at all… although they have become much more reliable recently.

My Score: 7/10

Ocado

Website: Not as easy to navigate but ok.
Drivers: Pleasant and polite.
Products: Some really delightful Waitrose own products.
Cost: Expensive. For example, two tiny little spears arrive for the same price of a shopping bag of broccoli from other supermarkets.
Booking slots: Later availability than some other supermarkets.
Pros: Excellent product selection, which you cannot find elsewhere (apart from Marks and Spencer food which doesn’t offer such an online service.)
Cons: The price. And their customer services are not terribly helpful – for example, when they delivered a joint of beef a third of the size ordered, they refunded it but were unconcerned it meant I had to go out and buy another Sunday roast…

My Score: 7/10

Sainsburys

Website: Difficult to navigate and for some reason clicks don’t always register. Thus you think you’ve ordered a product when you haven’t done (so that much-needed item fails to turn up…) Plus they put offers and alternatives so close to your favourites, it’s easy to click on them and get a whole load of stuff you don’t want. Then, make a cuppa and you’ll return to find you’ve been logged out… very irritating.
Drivers: Usually very helpful and pleasant.
Products: Sainsbury has one of the best range of products – which at the same time are high quality and not so costly. It’s one of the main reasons I grit my teeth and do the website …
Pros: Good range of basics and more premium products.
Cost: Spend over a certain amount and you get delivery free on some weekdays. Competitive on cost.
Booking slots: Website has problems here too. Will allow you to do your shopping, then suddenly log you out without saving your slot.
Cons: The problematic website is the main one and there’s often a high number of substitutions. Some substitutions are absurd although the store is very helpful. Sainsburys redeemed themselves by re-delivering some items they’d simply not delivered first time and ringing to ensure I’d got them.

My Score: 7/10

Tesco

Website: Straightforward list you can simply click down very fast. Clicks register quickly and accurately.
Drivers: Again, polite and helpful – they carry the shopping into the kitchen.
Products: Basics are very good but range is more limited than the other supermarkets. I have noticed this is gradually improving but there is a way to go. Also far too many Buy One get one free offers – I just don’t want double of so many products and yet I resent the price I am having to pay for the one item.
Booking slots: Easy, always lots of slots available and even late the night before you are ordering.
Cost: Expensive delivery – I am doing a big shop to feed a family of five hungry adults and would appreciate more money off that big shop (as other supermarkets give.) Also I’d prefer cheaper products instead of the BOGOFS. I don’t have room in my freezer for so much extra stuff and hate throwing away waste. Because of this, Tesco feels more expensive than some of its rivals.
Pros: Tesco sends fewest substitutions or food near its sell-by date. They seem extremely reliable, always turning up on time whatever the weather.
Cons: Lack of choice regarding premium products, too many offers that I don’t want, high delivery charges.

My Score: 8/10 – my choice because at Christmas I can’t be let down and because overall for me they’ve proved to be the most reliable.

Which is your favourite supermarket for online grocery shopping and why? Let us know below…!

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Alison Smith-Squire

Alison Smith-Squire is a writer, journalist and media agent selling exclusive real life stories to newspapers, magazines and TV. She owns the sell my story website Featureworld.co.uk, which was set up to help ordinary people sell their stories to the press.

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