Aldi Fans, Get Ready: This Cheaper Grocer Is Expanding in 2019
Last year, Aldi shoppers were intrigued when another European import launched in the United States to compete in the budget-friendly sphere—Lidl, a German-born retailer that has strong roots in western Europe and the United Kingdom, offers a similar shopping experience (we break down the differences between the two stores right here).
But Lidl's soft launch started with just a handful of stores scattered across the eastern seaboard, and didn't go as planned as the company fell way short of its goal—opening 100 stores in 2018.
It seems that Lidl has caught its footing, however. It opened a handful of new stores in the New York and New Jersey area, as well as three new stores in North Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland. And the discount retailer announced plans to open even more locations in Long Island after acquiring local chain Best Market this week, according to Supermarket News. Lidl will convert 24 stores primarily in the Long Island area, but a few Lidl locations in New York City proper will also open in early 2019.
Just like Aldi, Lidl has earned a reputation for being extremely budget friendly—it focuses solely on private-label items, and, yes, asks you to bag your own groceries in reusable bags (plastic bags are an extra cost). Rather than a large selection of private-label and name brand items, Lidl focuses on providing one choice at superior quality for a lower price, which, for some, makes shopping there much easier.
While a company representative says the retailer is currently focusing on expanding on the East Coast, you should want to see Lidl pop up in your neighborhood—according to retail experts, Lidl's affordable products actually cause other nearby retailers to slash prices to keep up. And one study from the University of North Carolina's Kenan-Flagler Business School shows that Lidl prices can be upwards of three percent cheaper than those at Aldi.
Looking to save money easily when grocery shopping? Read on:
Lidl currently operates 53 stores in the United States—and while Forbes wrote that Lidl "failed to live up to the hype" in 2018, company officials have reportedly found that a smaller store, made of just six aisles with plenty of natural light, is the best option moving forward. The 30 plus stores, coming as soon as late December into early January, will all be modeled on this layout, with plans to be open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.
The most exciting aspect of Lidl for many shoppers is the fact that the retailer offers much more than just food—you can find toys, alcohol, kitchen appliances, and even clothing and shoes (like this line designed by Heidi Klum) at similar Lidl private-label prices.
In an era when one-stop stores like Costco are beloved for convenience, we have a feeling Lidl will be super popular with budget shoppers who can snag cheap groceries, affordable appliances, kitchen decor, and a new blouse for just $9.99 (with no membership fee)!