While I was out to Walmart this past weekend, I thought about all the things that were asked when this assignment was given and many things soon became so clear to me about Walmart. In my essay I will speak about some of the concepts of retail marketing and establishment that was conquered. Walmart is a retail shopping center that was founded in the early 1960’s. The first store opened July 2, 1962 in Rogers, Arkansas. Walmart has always been dedicated to making a difference in the lives of our customers.
Our business is the result of Sam Walton's visionary leadership, along with generations of associates focused on helping customers and communities save money and live better (2013). Through innovation, Walmart’s creating a seamless experience to let customers shop anytime and anywhere online, through mobile devices and in stores. They are creating opportunities and bringing value to customers and communities around the globe. Walmart operates more than 10,900 retail units under 69 banners in 27 countries and ecommerce websites in 10 countries.
They also employ 2.2 million associates around the world — 1.3 million in the U.S. alone (2013). The location I visited is located 12.5 miles from my house and is a Supercenter. It is located on a major street that also has lots of other retail shopping stores. The street is called Niagara Falls Blvd and is a very well known street in Western New York. I shop at this store because of its location, it happens to be next door to my mother-in-laws work. Walmart’s main competition around my home is Target.
I feel that Walmart’s competitive position is offering a higher quality product for the same price, sometimes just a bit more in cost. Walmart’s main brands are: Mainstays for home goods and Great Value in their food department. The prices for Walmart brand’s is mostly always lower than the name brands that are also offered in the store. The competitive price makes me go back because the items that I can find in other stores are not often beaten in price; Walmart’s motto is “Saving people money so they can live better.”
Walmart’s layout is very unique; everything flows, almost in a natural shopping habit. I always start off in the health care items and make my way counter clockwise around the store, seemingly going from the needs to the wants by the time I am out of the store when ending in clothing and handbags. Most of the time I am there though I am there for grocery shopping and house hold items. So I start in produce make my way around to dairy, which is located in the back, and then I make my way to house hold goods. The store always has their special prices well put out with signs and banners; it is hard to miss their sales. Walmart also matches competitor’s prices.
Their sales approach is very laid back, I am almost never approached, which is personally how I like to shop. I do not like being bothered while I am shopping. They also have ads in the weekly Sunday newspaper as well as in commercials. If I ever need assistance it is readily available; I have never had to look long for help, there are store associates scattered all over the store. The Walmart employees seem very well trained and knowledgable of their departments. The return policies are amazing and the warranties are great which always gives any store a great interest to buy from because if you have buyer’s remorse you can take it back.
Walmart’s goal is to satisfy their customers by exchange, refund, or repair. Generally, they accept returns within 90 days after purchase. Walmart, for several years, has accepted returns without a receipt, even though many of their competitors require receipts for all returns. Walmart gives customers the option of a cash refund (if the purchase was under $25), a shopping card for the amount of the purchase (if it was over $25) or an even exchange for the product. Also, as applicable, they follow any manufacturer’s warranties (2013).
The first objective in marketing is discovering the needs of perspective customers (BUS 235 (1st ed)). This is where effective marketing comes into play. Walmart has been successful in doing so and this is why they are still running strong and opening more and more stores worldwide.
References BUS 235 (1st ed). McGraw-Hill Create. Retrieved from http://online.vitalsource.com/books/9781121130067 (2013). Walmart. In Our Story. Retrieved September 09, 2013, from http://corporate.walmart.com/.