Replacing the horizontal trolley grip with vertical handles, like those on a wheelbarrow, could prompt shoppers to dramatically up their spending.
According to The Telegraph, researchers from City, University of London and Austria’s University of Innsbruck found people bought more and spent an extra 25 per cent.
Most trolleys engage the triceps, which “is associated with rejecting things we don’t like – for example when we push or hold something away from us”.
By contrast, the new design activates the biceps, which is “associated with things we do like, for example when we pull or hold something close to our body”.
The researchers have held talks about the findings with supermarket chains in Austria and the US.
“It is shocking to find that making a small change to the position of handles can have such a large impact on shoppers’ spending,” Professor Estes, who led the study, said.
“The handles literally cause us to flex our shopping muscles.”