The Student News Site of Westfield High School

Hi's Eye

The Student News Site of Westfield High School

Hi's Eye

The Student News Site of Westfield High School

Hi's Eye

The Trade Secrets of Trader Joe’s

Photo by Mahika Dang
Trader Joe’s in Westfield, NJ

What exactly makes Trader Joe’s so special?

Trader Joe’s is seen as the staple place for many people in Westfield to get their groceries. Many prefer the store to other grocery chains such as Shoprite and King’s, and this is all due to the specific business policies that Trader Joe’s utilizes.  

Trader Joe’s actually rejects business tactics that many typical grocery stores apply. Some examples include how, according to and, they carry 10 percent of the items that a typical supermarket does and 86 percent of their products are sold directly by them. They also don’t have any coupons, rewards programs, delivery services or advertisements. Economics Teacher Daniel Farabaugh stated, “They don’t advertise much but rather simply spread by word of mouth.”

Despite these unusual ways, Trader Joe’s is immensely successful due to its business model, which is entirely focused on the customer experience. They are very specific with who they hire, making sure to employ charismatic and outgoing individuals who improve the ambiance of the store. These employees are easy to find for help when needed, and are trained to walk customers to items they need. Junior Savannah Cohen claimed, “I feel like I can always get the help I need when I’m there. There is always an employee somewhere around.”

Other ways they care about their customer’s experience includes the artistic design of the store, which tries to express an aesthetic similar to a local farmers market. Also according to, Trader Joe’s brings in artists weekly to draw signs for the inside and outside of the stores. This can also be seen in other franchises, like Playa Bowls and Starbucks. 

Another simpler aspect that assists sales is the open layouts of Trader Joe’s stores, which allows customers to discover new products and make impulsive purchases.

An especially risky decision that Trader Joe’s made is with its limited selection of items, only offering, according to, about 4,000 items nationwide. This surprisingly works in the companies’ favor, as limiting options makes customers feel less overwhelmed when shopping. Their prices and selections are also incredibly reliable and consistent so shoppers always know what to expect. 

Trader Joe’s frequently has seasonal or limited products, which adds to the experience of the customer’s shopping trip. Junior Audrey Bassolino excitedly stated, “I love seeing all the new fall foods come out. I always try to get to Trader Joe’s early in the fall to get all of them.”

Many WHS students are frequent shoppers, whether it be for the cheaper prices or the flair of the store itself. Junior Gisella Rittenhouse said, “I love going, me and my mom make a trip out of it. To me, Trader Joe’s is a better experience than going to a bigger name-brand store, like Shoprite.” 

Trader Joe’s is overall a very successful chain primarily due to their belief that the customer’s experience is most important. The strategies they use make sure customers feel valued and comfortable when they are shopping. This, according to Farabaugh, “​​breeds a lot of customer loyalty,” so people love to keep returning back.

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