Retail Marketing – continued
Retail businesses in the past were very different from what we know today, although some of the current businesses have been in business for most of the past century and their development has led to the current forms of commerce. While the goal of retail is essentially the same, the service is constantly changing. For example, a few decades ago, the introduction of self-service grocery stores meant that the responsibility for selecting and stockpiling goods fell on the buyer. The retailer’s services have been reduced to product display and sales rather than face-to-face contact with customers. This has led to the need to pay attention to a wider range of marketing activities. And more recently, the rise of e-commerce has challenged the myth that the key to retail success is location, location, location.
“Physical” proximity between a potential customer and a supplier is still important for many product categories.
A retailer’s ability to increase product availability is critical to the success of a retailer, but the goal can also be achieved by increasing product acceptance or affordability. This is why interaction can be achieved in other ways, such as the already mentioned mail-order trading and the Internet. This greatly increased shopping opportunities and created interactive, albeit remote, contact between the parties. As such, new technologies have greatly increased consumer engagement, expectations, and shopping experience. Nevertheless, in many English cities, open markets are still successfully traded. For some categories of goods and for some segments of consumers, the role of such markets remains very important. However, the increasing practice of shopping for fun has led other types of shopping to take a different direction. All these changes mean that retailers have to constantly re-evaluate their marketing activities, sometimes changing focus, but also acquiring new knowledge. However, the purpose of marketing in retail industries remains the same. namely, to provide the best possible exchange between the supplier and the buyer, bringing profit to the retailer.
If we recall the classic theory of the evolution of retailing called the retailing wheel (Hollander, 1960), we can see that the wheel is now turning at an ever faster pace. New forms of retailing arise in accordance with changing consumer needs, the emergence of new types of shopping activities and the adoption of these new forms by the consumer. New types of retail are also emerging and maturing, and they too may fall out of favor and decline to be replaced by other options more in tune with the modern lifestyle of shoppers. The turns of the retail wheel are dictated both by the creative thinking of innovative retailers and by the changing expectations of shoppers as to where and when a particular product should be available when they want it in a crowded market.
Under these conditions, every retailer must take into account the marketing of individual services in order to attract and satisfy the buyer, and not go unnoticed by him. The statistics on the failure of newly opened small retail businesses are adamant and point unequivocally to the concentration taking place on the high streets and to the growth in the number of commercial firms with higher turnover. Keynote/Business Monitor RA 1003 published an analysis of the turnover of UK VAT registered retailers for 1990-1997.
Large retail groups are not only growing, they are also gaining greater opportunities to deal with their suppliers.
In many cases, manufacturers have completely lost control over the conclusion of sales transactions, so that the retailer can no longer be seen as an intermediary between producer and buyer, but rather as the leading link in the distribution chain, dictating the competitive policy of the vertical marketing group that he created.
Retailers are the largest employers, with over 4 million people employed in the sector, but retail has always had a high percentage of part-time employees and recent figures show that over 40 per cent of all UK employees are in this category.
Large retail groups are not only growing, they are also gaining greater opportunities to deal with their suppliers. In many cases, manufacturers have completely lost control over the conclusion of sales transactions, so that the retailer can no longer be seen as an intermediary between producer and buyer, but rather as the leading link in the distribution chain, dictating the competitive policy of the vertical marketing group that he created.