Mkt 100: Walmart marketing research paper
Wal-Mart is a multinational retail corporation dealing in warehouse stores and discount departmental stores. The retail corporation has its headquarters in the United States, in the Arkansas state. Walmart focuses on giving customers the best value for their money by providing quality products at low prices, and with outstanding customer service. This sets Wal-Mart apart from the rest of the competition.
Walmart’s unique selling preposition is a focus on “everyday low prices” (EDLP) while delivering quality products to customers (“Walmart,” 2014). The retail corporation stocks a broad assortment of products such as national brands and local merchandise that reflects the need of consumers in the area of operation. The company focuses on an “everyday low cost” strategy that aims at keeping costs low. This enables Wal-Mart to sell at relatively low prices compared to other retailers in the market (“Walmart,” 2014).
Walmart has a number of marketing objectives. The retail corporation seeks to deliver locally relevant products to customers at low prices. This can also be seen as marketing segmentation where various stores across the world will stock locally relevant merchandise. Wal-Mart also seeks to expand its product delivery channels to include e-commerce (“Walmart,” 2014). This means that the retail store will integrate digital and physical platforms to reach out to as many consumers as possible. Online stores will appeal to consumers who prefer shopping online. Secondary research was conducted by reviewing Walmart’s 2014 annual report.
To sum up, USP may be defined as the distinct value or characteristic of a product that enables Walmart to increase its market share (Steinhardt, 2010). Marketing objectives highlights the active steps the retail store has taken to achieve a unique selling preposition.
- Cost leadership in the retail business
- Expansion into the international market
- Stocks a wide range of merchandise
- Established brand name
- Logistical and supply chain capabilities
- High employee turnover
- The retailer has faced a number of labor related lawsuits
- Some stores are crowded
- Increase in expenses may force the retail store to adjust prices
- The opportunity to attract more customers through online platform.
- Walmart’s own label merchandise is gaining acceptance and can boost growth
- Growth opportunities in emerging markets
- Growth in operating income in 2014.
- High competition from other retailers
- Increase in commodity prices
- High competition from online stores
- Slow growth in developed and developing markets experienced 2014 (Tabuchi & Abrams, 2014).
Walmart supply chain and operational system aims at enhancing the everyday low prices model. As such it is important to use optimized transportation routes which can enable a business achieve high efficiencies in the supply chain (Tabuchi & Abrams, 2014). Mechanizing all the distribution centers and stores can also help in labor cost reduction. Outside vendors may be costly so it is advisable to do everything in-house.
The company’s pricing strategy is in line with the company’s pricing objective. The company seeks to become the price leader in the industry by charging lowest possible prices (Tabuchi & Abrams, 2014). The company’s objective is to deliver a variety of merchandise to consumers at low prices. A SWOT analysis is an important tool used in determining the internal strengths and weaknesses and the external opportunities and threats facing a company (Ferrell & Hartline, 2011). The importance of describing the supply chain and pricing strategy is to show how the company integrates the information to its decision making using the SWOT analysis.
Ferrell, O. C., & Hartline, M. D. (2011). Marketing strategy. Australia: South-Western Cengage Learning.
Steinhardt, G. (2010). The product manager’s toolkit: Methodologies, processes, and tasks in high-tech product management. Heidelberg: Springer.
Tabuchi, H., & Abrams, R. (2014, Nov. 13). After a Bump in Sales, Walmart Braces for a Competitive Holiday Season. The New York Times.
Walmart, (2014). Annual Report. Retrieved from http://stock.walmart.com/files/doc_financials/2014/Annual/2014-annual-report.pdf