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Extensive Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury’s – Detailed Explanation

Updated on: Aug 26, 2022
Marketing Strategy Of Sainsbury's - Featured Image

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In a previous article, we saw the marketing strategy of Wysa, an Indian-based AI-enabled mental health application. In this article, we’ll discuss Sainsbury’s – a supermarket chain established in the United Kingdom.

The main objective of Sainsbury’s is to be fair with their suppliers and make a trustee environment, and that’s why Sainsbury’s keeps their first priority to provide the best food at a fair price and not focus on short-term gains.

So, today everyone is working digitally and Marketing has become the backbone of all companies in this digital world. So if you want to learn marketing you can check out this Free Masterclass on Digital Marketing by the CEO and founder of IIDE, Karan Shah.

Now, in this blog, we will be learning the detailed marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s. Before moving towards the marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s, firstly let’s look at the company’s story, target audience and digital presence.


About Sainsbury’s – Company Overview 

Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury's

Sainsbury’s plc which people know as Sainsbury’s is the third-largest supermarket chain in the UK. This business was started by John James Sainsbury along with his wife Mary Ann in the year 1869. It started as a fresh food retailer and with time expanded into packaged food items. 

In the year 1922, J Sainsbury was incorporated as a private company known as ‘J. Sainsbury Limited’. The company went public in the year 1973 and till then the company was completely owned by the Sainsbury family. 

Between the years 1992-1998, Sainsbury’s had to undergo a downfall. The brand was relaunched in the year 1999 and from the year 2004 to 2006, they made sure to bring Sainsbury’s back to its place. 

They not only tried to make it like before but grew it even more. Today, after going through so many ups and downs, J Sainsbury’s plc is split into three divisions: Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd (including convenience shops), Sainsbury’s Bank, and Argos with over 600 supermarkets and 800 convenience stores.

Quick Stats on Sainsbury’s
CEO Simon Roberts
CMO Mark Given
Area Served The United Kingdom
Industry Retailing
Market Share/ Revenue $38.004B
Vision To be the trusted retailer where people love to work and shop.
Tagline Live Well for Less


Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury’s

To sell its products in the consumer market, Sainsbury’s has used both BTL and ATL techniques. To establish its brand, it has run advertisements in newspapers, radio, television, billboards, and flyers. Its promotional strategy includes sales promotion via incentives and database marketing.

Let’s learn some more marketing strategies of Sainsbury’s:

Segmentation, Targeting, and Positioning

Sainsbury’s pricing strategy is built on giving customers “value for money,” which ensures that the quality of products and services is maintained, resulting in customer retention. It uses competitive pricing instead of price lowering because the latter only delivers a short-term gain in market share.

The target audience of Sainsbury’s is from 15 to 80 years. It is a supermarket chain and everyone wants all things to buy from one place and of the best quality so that’s why all people of this age used to go there for their comfort. But the main customer of the company is the family unit, especially Mother. Sainsbury’s does various advertisements on television to attract this segment.

Sainsbury’s is the second-largest grocery chain in the United Kingdom, accounting for a 16.0% shmarket are of the supermarket sector o And positioned itself in medium to high-end markets. Sainsbury’s has carved out a niche as a mid-to-high-end store. As a result, many of the company’s items have a premium price.

Marketing Campaigns

Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury's - Campaign 1

Sainsbury’s from years ago has come up with different slogans to define what the brand is all about. Slogans like ‘It’s clean, it’s fresh at Sainsbury’s & ‘Sainsbury’s for Quality, Sainsbury’s for Value’ have shown the quality and protocols followed by Sainsbury’s when it comes to food.

The slogan “Good Food Costs Less in Sainsbury’s” has been described by BBC News as ‘probably the best-known advertising slogan in retailing’. Sainsbury’s advertised this slogan in the early 1980s to value their products by the tagline “Good Food Costs Less in Sainsbury’s”. The company wanted people to buy their quality products at a lesser price.

Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury's - Campaign 2

“Live well with less” – By Sainsbury’s was an awareness campaign more than a marketing campaign to tell the individuals how 10% of every week groceries end up being thrown out in a bin ultimately affecting the environment and our sea species. 

To advertise these campaigns Sainsbury’s placed posters in and around Sainsbury’s doors and took the help of social media to promote it. To protect the environment, Sainsbury’s was taking 10% of food out of Sainsbury’s Taste the Different products and giving 10% back to nature by supporting projects of the environmental campaigning community Friends of the Earth. 

You can gather complete information about the campaign on this – site.

Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury's - Campaign 3

Sainsbury’s ‘Noodle Soup’ has been named the most creatively effective magazine ad of February in terms of public response, thanks to its attention-grabbing colours and brand-building capabilities.

Readers have “complete control” when consuming advertising within a magazine, so to make an impact, the creative must first grab attention, then “hook” the reader in to increase dwell time and maximise “depth of processing. This is a “key strength” of this particular advertisement.

The Sainsbury’s ad is in the top 30% of all UK ads for its capacity to make readers stop and pay attention, thanks to its “bright, vibrant, and fresh-looking” images.

Social Media Marketing

Sainsbury’s has ensured that its social media footprint grows every day. The food recipes and DIY videos spread access to all forms of media and attract a lot of eyeballs. The posts are related to food recipes and tips so that they can help everyone eat better. The company can be found everywhere from Linkedin to Instagram to Facebook to Twitter and Youtube. 

Facebook: 1.67M followers 
Linkedin: 290K followers 
Instagram: 333K followers 
Twitter: 593K followers 

Facebook is the strongest Social Media platform for Sainsbury’s when it comes to followers. However, this does not signify a different strategy, but rather just the time spent on a particular platform. 

Sainsbury’s has a very well-organised posting routine which makes sure that each Social media platform gets equal attention. 

Sainsbury’s posts information content on its social media handles especially on Instagram. If we take the example of Sainsbury’s – “Live well with less” awareness campaign – to prevent even the smallest amounts of food from being wasted, Sainsbury’s shared lots of leftover tips and food recipes on social media at the time when the campaign was conducted. Sainsbury’s invited famous British chefs, like Selin Kiazim, to give online workshops and share recipes.

SEO Strategies

Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury's - SEO

According to SEO rankings, a low number of keywords (under 500) is considered terrible, a number of keywords (over 1000) are considered good, and a high number of keywords (10,000+) is considered exceptional. As we can see, has 2,520,105 organic keywords, which is considered exceptional. That means the digital marketing of Sainsbury’s is gaining a very very good number of insights.

Also, the monthly traffic is around 9,565,326, which is considered brilliant. The good number for monthly traffic is 20,000, but Sainsbury’s has more than the good number and as a result, Sainsbury’s SEO strategies are brilliant and they do not need any more strategies to cover traffic, they will easily get traffic.

Influencer Marketing

Sainsbury’s has culturally steered away from influencer marketing and celebrity endorsements. There have rarely been any global celebrities featured in their Commercials over the years. However, the company has time and again featured people who have done something for society in different fields.

Sainsbury’s has tied up with two delivery companies, Uber eats and Deliveroo. Sainsbury’s also allows some food bloggers to blog about Sainsbury’s food. And Sainsbury’s doesn’t have many influencers, the company has its own pages and handles to launch its products and many marketing ways to promote its products.

E-commerce Strategies

Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury's - e-com

Sainsbury’s has a very good e-commerce platform to sell online groceries. Every type of food is labelled and shown in category wise and there is also a section of top picks which contains the goods which are sold regularly and are very popular. 

Users can order Sainsbury’s own-label and branded products plus other grocery and frozen products to their doorsteps from Sainsbury’s e-commerce website. 

Sainsbury’s also has a section where it sells Sainsbury’s bank credit cards and bank loans, Tu (clothing products), Argos (kids toys and school items), and Habitat (furniture & homewares).

The website has a part where you can select by category and at the top of the website is a search bar where you can search for your favourite food. The website is well designed concerning user experience. 

Mobile Apps

Marketing Strategy of Sainsbury's - Mobile App

Sainsbury’s has an application named “Chop Chop” – through which you can order groceries and get them delivered in 60 minutes to your door. The application is available on both platforms – Android and iOS. 

Content Marketing Strategies

Sainsbury’s is very active on social media. The post content is related to their new products, awareness messages, etc. The source of posting content is through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as LinkedIn is a professional platform so there is only promotional content for the company.

When it comes to marketing strategies. Sainsbury’s keeps it simple yet effective. As discussed in this article, the emphasis is on the employees and the customers when it comes to marketing. 

A major benefit of this structure is the variance of people they can use ranging from different demography, economic backgrounds, race etc. There is no reliance on only one celebrity.  

Sainsbury’s also keeps their content interactive, giving a personal vibe to its client base. Informational content is also a major boost to their imprint as more and more people refer it to each other and help them build a community. 

This ends the elaborative marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s. Let us conclude our learning below from the marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s.


Conclusion — What’s unique in Sainsbury’s Marketing?

In the Marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s, we had seen that Sainsbury’s believes in providing quality products at fewer prices and this is the thing which makes Sainsbury’s a better supermarket company than others. Sainsbury’s doesn’t want short-term gains they had directly made the long-term gains by gaining the trust of customers.

Digital marketing is crucial since it links a company with its clients when they are online and is effective across all sectors. It links businesses with ideal consumers through SEO and PPC on Google, social media marketing, and email marketing. If you would like to learn more and develop skills, check out IIDE’s 4-Month Digital Marketing Course to learn more.

Alternatively, you can enrol in one of our free online masterclasses led by IIDE’s CEO, Karan Shah, to gain insight into the field of digital marketing. 

We hope this blog on the marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s has given you a good insight into the company’s marketing strategies.

If you like such in-depth analysis of companies just like the marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s check out our IIDE Knowledge portal for more fascinating case studies.

Thank you for taking the time to read the marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s, and do share your thoughts on this case study marketing strategy of Sainsbury’s in the comments section below.

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Aditya Shastri

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]


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