8 things to know about new discount grocer Lidl

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8 things to know about new discount grocer Lidl
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The grocery market is about to get a big shakeup when German discount grocer Lidl opens its first U.S. locations in mid-June.

This new player has a lot of traditional supermarkets shaking with fear because of a reputation for low prices and great service that precedes it.

Read more: 7 new things happening at Dollar General right now

Did you know these 8 things about Lidl?

Grand opening day is June 15

Ten stores throughout North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia are opening on June 15.

North Carolina

  • Greenville, NC – 1800 East Fire Tower Rd.
  • Kinston, NC – 4050 W. Vernon Ave.
  • Rocky Mount, NC – 940 N. Wesleyan Blvd.
  • Sanford, NC – 3209 NC 87 South
  • Wilson, NC – 3520 Raleigh Rd. Parkway West
  • Winston-Salem, NC – 3315 Sides Branch Rd.

South Carolina

  • Greenville, SC – 2037 Wade Hampton Blvd.
  • Spartanburg, S.C. – 8180 Warren H. Abernathy Hwy.

Virginia

  • Hampton, VA – 2000 W. Mercury Blvd.
  • Virginia Beach, VA – 6196 Providence Rd.

More stores are coming by this time in 2018

Eighty more U.S. stores are on tap over the next 12 months.

Most will be concentrated along the Eastern seaboard from Georgia all the way up to New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Here are more towns Lidl is tentatively planning to enter

Back in 2016, BusinessInsider reported that Lidl was considering the following locations in five other states:

Delaware

  • Dover
  • Middletown

Georgia

  • Augusta
  • Newnan
  • Pooler
  • Sandy Springs
  • Woodstock

Maryland

  • Aberdeen
  • Bowie
  • Eldersburg
  • Annapolis

New Jersey

  • Burlington Township
  • Vineland

Pennsylvania

  • Dover Township
  • Erie
  • Pottstown
  • Royersford
  • Spring Garden Township
  • Springettsbury Township
  • Stroudsburg
  • Uniontown/South Union
  • Whitehall Township
  • Wilkins
  • Wilson

You can suggest a location for a new store

Want a Lidl near you? The company wants to hear from you!

You can email them to suggest a location.

Just keep in mind that the proposed site will need a minimum of four acres of space near a busy intersection within three miles of a densely populated area.

Oh, and the company also wants sites with minimum drive-by traffic of 20,000 cars a day!

Lidl is not a hard discounter

If you follow the advice of money expert Clark Howard regularly, you may be familiar with the term “hard discounter.” It’s an industry-agnostic term that denotes any business that cuts its operations to the bare bones to deliver low prices to the customer.

So some examples of hard discounters in the airline industry include Spirit Air, Ryan Air and others. In the grocery industry, Aldi is the quintessential hard discounter: Small stores, limited products, limited staff and the lowest prices.

But Lidl is not a hard discounter in the truest sense of the term. Forbes calls it a “soft discounter” instead.

The distinction is that Lidl will have more products and more brand names than Aldi, but still at low prices.

“I’ve shopped in Lidl in a number of places across Europe and they are exceptional,” Clark Howard says. “When you walk into a Lidl… they look really upscale, but they are ruthless in cost control and, in turn, provide you with extraordinary prices.”

When it comes to square footage, Lidl has a Goldilocks plan

Too small, too big and just right: Lidl wants to distinguish itself with its approach to floor planning.

The average U.S. Lidl location is expected to be between 30,000 and 36,000 square feet. The typical Aldi, meanwhile, has about 10,000 square feet of sales floor space. And the average traditional supermarket can be up to 45,000 square feet!

So Lidl hopes to hit that sweet spot: Lots of space for products, but not too much that it becomes a chore moving around the store.

Lidl will have a highly curated assortment of wines

Lidl has a sommelier on staff who tasted more than 10,000 wines to bring the best to shoppers.

Look for a rare Chilean Malbec and a rosé from Provence wine that Adam Lapierre, director of wine for Lidl U.S., says you won’t find elsewhere at retail.

Forget everything you know about pricing displays

Lidl posts its prices in a weird place. Forget about looking below an item on the shelf for a price. Prices at Lidl reportedly will appear above the item you want to buy!

Read more: 5 new things going on at Ollie’s Bargain Outlet

Clark talks Lidl’s U.S. arrival and its impact on the grocery industry

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Theo Thimou About the author:
Theo is director of content for clark.com. He has co-written 2 books with Clark Howard, including the #1 New York Times bestseller Clark Howard's Living Large in Lean Times.
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