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Morrisons revealed as UK’s cheapest online supermarket

by LLB staff reporter
2nd Mar 21 10:53 am

An online price tracking website that’s constantly monitoring the price increases and decreases across seven major UK online supermarkets can reveal that Morrisons has stolen the title from Asda as the least expensive option for British consumers looking to keep their grocery costs down.

Morrisons, Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Ocado all saw basket totals decrease for the month of February, whereas Asda, Iceland and Waitrose’s baskets went up in price.

The results have been determined by carefully tracking how each online retailer prices the 42 items outlined in the Government’s Consumer Price Index ‘shopping basket’ on a week-by-week basis. Not only was Morrisons found to be the overall cheapest supermarket for the month of February (with an average basket cost of £112.56), it was also found to be offering the cheapest items for three of the four weeks of analysis throughout the month. Asda came in a close second, ending it’s 9-month long reign of being crowned the most affordable supermarket, with an average basket cost of £112.64.

with Asda found to be the cheapest supermarket in week four with a basket spend of £108.83, followed by Iceland (£115.62) and then Morrisons, whose basket went up by £4.75 from £112.58 in week three to £117.33 in week four, which was interesting to see.

Kenco instant coffee (200g) was £4.00 in weeks one and two at Waitrose before increasing in price to £6.50 in week three; the coffee also went up in price at Asda too, from £4.00 in week two to £5.00 in week three, leaving Morrisons, Sainsbury’s and Iceland the cheapest at £4.00 a jar throughout the whole month.

Morrisons Salmon Fillets (240G) were £4.00 in week one before going down in price to just £2.95; the supermarket also reduced the cost of their milk (2 pints of semi-skimmed and whole milk) from 82p to 80p and their Clover spread (500g) from £1.85 in week one to just £1.00 by week three.

Andy Barr, co-founder of www.alertr.co.uk, said, “It’s very interesting to see Asda being hit off the top spot after nine whole months of being crowned the cheapest supermarket for the government’s Consumer Price Index shopping basket.

“It was only a matter of time before the other online supermarkets started lowering their prices to compete, but Morrisons have never really been that far behind – even right now, their basket price is just 8p cheaper than Asda. We’re already intrigued to know who will come out on top next month; will Morrisons continue to reign or will Asda fight for the number 1 spot?”

The online price tracking website has been tracking the prices of 42 everyday items from the shopping basket on the Office for National Statistics’ Consumer Price Index (CPI) since 2019. Included within the list are items such as eggs, milk and bread, as well as non-perishables such as pasta, rice and cereal. The prices across seven of the largest supermarkets are analysed, with discount retailers Lidl and Aldi not included due to the inability for customers to shop full ranges online and not having the same like-for-like branded products that other supermarkets stock.

Own-brand items (or their equivalent) were monitored in the research to give the most unbiased comparison of goods and their prices, with the exception of branded items that all seven supermarkets stocked (e.g., Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s Cornflakes, etc.).

The full breakdown of each supermarket’s average basket costs, from lowest to highest over the four-week period in February, were as follows:

  1. Morrisons – £112.56 (£4.86 less than last month)
  2. ASDA – £112.64 (£3.44 more than last month)
  3. Tesco – £115.31 (£2.88 less than last month)
  4. Iceland – £115.93 (40p more than last month)
  5. Sainsburys – £116.76 (£2.71 less than last month)
  6. Ocado – £123.06 (£4.38 less than last month)
  7. Waitrose – £128.89 (£1.19 more than last month)

To ensure the results across the stores are fair, if an item is unavailable or out of stock in one of the seven online stores for a whole week, then the product is dismissed and not analysed within the final basket costs for the month. For February, Tesco were out of 6 large free-range eggs in week three, so they were removed from tracking totals across all supermarkets to make it fair. Items can also be replaced with another like-for-like item, as long as it is in stock across all seven retailers.

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