Action items at Lidl ran out before the store opened, leading to customer frustration on social media. To cope with increasing prices, more people turn to flyers and patiently wait for items to go on sale. This applies not only to food and more minor, cheaper products but also to more extensive and expensive items like garden tools, such as those branded as Parkside, frequently featured in Lidl stores. However, even arriving a few minutes after the store opens at 7:00 a.m. does not guarantee success, as often there is only one item on the shelves, or sometimes none.
A complaint from a dissatisfied customer was observed on social media. The customer wanted to purchase a robotic lawnmower advertised on the flyer. To secure the item, she arrived on the first day of the promotion before 7:00 a.m. and waited with fifteen other individuals outside the store until it opened.
Unfortunately, she left empty-handed as only one lawnmower was available, quickly claimed by a faster customer. When she inquired about the limited stock, the salespeople explained that it was a new store and refused her request to check availability at another branch.
The customer’s post generated numerous reactions, with many others sharing similar experiences. Some customers voiced dissatisfaction with the limited supply, criticizing Lidl for potentially misleading advertising. Similar complaints regarding the robotic lawnmower sale were also found on the VašeStížnosti.cz platform, operated by the dTest Association. Disappointed customers demanded reimbursement for the expenses incurred while visiting multiple branches and the time wasted.
Another customer shared a similar experience regarding a pool advertised in the flyer, which was unavailable at the store. Other customers mentioned items like string trimmers, branch shredders, and electric scarifiers that were scarce or sold out shortly after the store opened. These stock shortages have extended beyond garden tools, as one customer reported the absence of discounted Svijany beer on the shelves shortly after the store opened.
In response to inquiries, the Czech Trade Inspection Authority stated that businesses should ensure an adequate supply of discounted items based on the promotion duration, the nature of the product, the extent of advertising, and the discount level. Lidl addressed the issue by stating that allocation to stores is determined by a distribution key, considering each location’s sales potential.
They further explained that they are more cautious in allocating these types of products due to high inflation and lower overall demand for consumer goods. The unexpectedly high demand resulted in some stores’ rapid depletion of stock. Lidl assured customers that other robotic lawnmowers would be available at stores starting June 15.