As many of you know (because we have stated this many times over the years), until late November 2023, we have not had an Aldi store within 1,200km of where we are based in Townsville, Queensland. As such, we have only been able to add Aldi products when app users send in verification requests. We still managed to have thousands of Aldi products in the database.
As we now have a store here in Townsville, over the past six weeks, we have been going in and scanning entire aisles at a time at Aldi to add products to the database. We have added over 700 products, including over 400 this week alone. We have now completed our scanning and have done every grocery aisle at Aldi with the exception of things like animal meats, dairy milk and eggs, as no one needs an app to know those things are not vegan. This should significantly improve the scanning accuracy when using the app at Aldi.
We thought it would also be a good time to answer some questions and make some points to note regarding Aldi from the perspective of our app and how it differs from Coles/Woolworths, etc.
1. Aldi does not use the EAN barcode system that most of the world uses. Aldi users their own system. Our app will recognise Aldi barcodes.
2. Because Aldi does not use the EAN system, they are not bound by any rules regarding the use of barcodes. Essentially, they can do what they want, when they want with their barcodes.
3. A lot of the products that did not scan for us in Aldi, we found that we actually had that product already listed in the app with a different barcode, sometimes even two or three barcodes already in the app. Aldi changes their barcodes far more frequently than everyone else that uses the EAN system. We have even come across some products where Aldi has reused the barcode number on an entirely different product than what we had listed for that barcode in the app. When scanning Aldi barcodes, please ensure that the product you scan is the same product that comes up in the app.
ALDI PRODUCT IMAGES
1. Aldi does not have what you would call a comprehensive website when compared to a traditional supermarket like Coles or Woolworths. This means that they do not provide product images for most of the products they sell on their website.
2. Because 95% of the products sold in Aldi are Aldi branded products, there is also no manufacturer website that we can check to try and source product images from.
3. This is why most Aldi products in the database show the Aldi logo instead of the product image. We do not use crowd sourced or app user photos of products in the database. We generally only use the official manufacturer images.
ALDI PRODUCTS NOT FOUND IN THE DATABASE
1. As we stated above, now that we have a local Aldi, the scan accuracy should increase significantly, but.....
2. Aldi often changes their products around (far more frequently than Coles or Woolworths) and even if it is the same product that has been there for years, they will sometimes change the barcode as well. This means that their will always be more Aldi products not found in the database then products found at Coles or Woolworths.
3. Whilst we will be able to keep up more often now, it is important to note that Aldi simply does not have the market share (only 10%) in Australia to divert resources away from our team going into Coles and Woolworths scanning for products not in the database. Woolworths has 37% market share and Coles has 28%. Between the two that is 65% market share and most products are available at both of these stores, where as most Aldi products are only available at Aldi, which has 10% market share in Australia.
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