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Team project - Essay Example

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It functions as a membership only-warehouse club operating with 550 stores worldwide and has 54 million members. From a simple beginning, the company has grown to become a billion dollar earner in…
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Business Team Project June COSTCO MARKETING PLAN COSTCO is an American-based company that carries varied amount of merchandise. Itfunctions as a membership only-warehouse club operating with 550 stores worldwide and has 54 million members. From a simple beginning, the company has grown to become a billion dollar earner in 2008. Today, it is the fifth largest membership warehouse in the United States and ninth largest in the world. Company offers their customers lower priced selected branded local goods in a wide range of merchandise categories. Company offers two kinds of membership cards to its customers, the Gold Membership that costs $55 a year and the Executive Business Membership that costs $110.00 per year. Executive members receive a reward of up to two percent reward on Costco purchases per year.( Costco.com)
Vision
Company vision as put forward by its founder, Jim Sinegal, is to “give the customer the best value we can”. His strategic vision is to give customers the best value and at the right price. He stressed the importance of treating people right and with respect. It works under the philosophy of “To keep costs down and pass savings to customers.” (costco.com)
Product.
Costco sells automotive supplies, sporting goods, hardware, apparels, jewelry, toys, electronic goods and health aids. Away from the usual business activities, COSTO offers technical and non technical services based on different forte such as travel operations to financial investments. Other services of COSTCO includes COSTCO Photo Center, COSTCO Travel, Food Service and Shopping. In 2010, the company branched out to publishing, and has started to publish books and calendars. (Success Story. 2015)
Price
Costco does not raise prices because it believes it will be its downfall. In order to offer lower prices than competitors, it adopted a mark-up price of only 15 percent which is much lower than department stores. Department stores, according to Bond, Ronald, 2015,has a mark-up of 50 percent. Costco keeps its price down because they sell in bulk so that a cost of operation is down.
Distribution
Costco distribute its products through its international warehouse designed buildings located at various global sites. Costco has 672 warehouses in various regions, majority of which are in America. Few are located in Asia, such as there are 20 COSTCO warehouse stores in Japan, 11 in South Korea, 10 in Taiwan and 7 in Australia. It has also opened an internet website to keep abreast with competition, with free shipping and discounts to members. It limits distribution of its products by carrying limited items. Costco believes that selling fewer items helps to increase sales volume and drives discounts.
Promo
COSTCO does not advertise, but instead invest more in giving value to its products and services, and in investing in employees’ pay and benefits. Company believes that this strategy will retain employees and motivate customers to keep coming back. Its website serves as a virtual store that displays its products and merchandise for sale.
Social Roles
COSTCO places high value on employees, training, pay and incentives. Company put importance in hiring good people, giving them good jobs and to grow own talent. This means employees working at COSTCO has a feeling of security on their jobs as long as they are performing well.
Competition
COSTCO competes with warehouse clubs operations in the United States, Sam’s Clubs and BJ’S Wholesale Club. It also competes with regional wholesalers and retailers, supermarkets, department stores, gasoline station retailers, and internet retailers. Well-known competitors are Wal-Mart, Target, Kohl’s and Amazon. It also competes with operators of single merchandise like Home Depot, Office Depot, Best Buy, PetSmart, TradersJoe, and others. However, despite competition, COSTCO’s net income grew by 17.17% while most of its competitors experienced drop of sales by -0.57%. (CSI Market,2015)
SWOT ANALYSIS
STRENGTH
Company offers varied product mix
Strong financial performance.
Company displayed continued profitable performance for past several years.
Loyal employees
Value added services
WEAKNESSES
Sales is reliant on the American market
OPPORTUNITIES
Expansion in new markets
Non-store format growth
THREAT
Intense competition
Labor laws, regulation and policy changes of the government
Conclusion
COSTCO’S marketing strategy that is based on customer needs has put the company to where it is now. Putting emphasis on consumers’ needs is an important marketing strategy because it provides owners with a measure that it can use to manage and improve their business. Customers’ satisfaction is important in business because it is the best indicator that a customer will become repeat customers and they eventually become advertisers through word of mouth. When satisfied customers begin to tell others of the store’s convenience, information transmitted is better than print ads.
Further, its working philosophy of “keeping costs down and pass on savings to customers” is a strategy that has kept company closer to its employees and customers. It helps on the sustainability of the company since customers believe that they get benefits from being a member of the club. Same thing goes to retention of employees. By paying attention to employees needs by way of training and promotion, company maintains healthy relationship with them. Employees are motivated to perform and give back their best efforts to the company.
w.c. 856
LIST OF REFERENCES
Bond, Ronald, 2008. Finding the right price for your retail products. Entrepreneur. Retrieved from http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/193986
CSI Market, 2015. COST Sales vs. its Competitors Q4. Retrieved from http://csimarket.com/stocks/compet_glance.php?code=COST
COSTCO.com. Join the Club. Retrieved from http://www.costco.com/join-costco.html
Success Story. COSTCO Wholesale. Retrieved from http://successstory.com/companies/costco Read More
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