My most recent receipt from Albertson's is over TWO FEET long (26.5") for only 43 items. It was just a quick run to the store and yet I have this monster roll of paper. At first I thought it was some sort of inside joke. Why would anyone think that I needed a two foot long receipt to track items that I already purchased? So its more then just a long receipt that turns me off.

This may sound trivial but if you can't figure out that the customer doesn't want a 2 foot long receipt how do you expect to get anything else right? The stupidly long receipt symbolizes to me their disconnect with the customer.

Alberston's grocery is within walking distance from my house (but who walks right?), and about half of the time I drive an extra 10 minutes to go to Whole Foods. Sure there are lots of reasons I prefer Whole Foods (better meat and veggies are key) but Whole Foods receipts are so simple. They even print them double sided, so the "inside joke" is to see if you bother folding it at all. Whole Foods gets it; They get me too. I don't mind paying a little more for quality. I like the idea of choosing between a fresh cup of coffee or a draft micro beer while I ponder the ingredients of my next meal.

Note: Slideshare.net has Whole Foods 2009 marketing plan which is an interesting look at the grocery industry.