Starbucks Retail Strategy
Starbucks is a global coffee brand firm that sells premium coffee globally. The company has maintained strong brand image in the globe as a leader in coffee roasting and selling. A part from making premium coffee products, Starbucks is also regarded as a coffee centric brand since the firm’s main focus is in creating customer loyalty through satisfying their needs (Koehn, McNamara, Khan, & Legris, 2014). Beside maintaining global brand image, Starbucks also tends to source premium quality coffee from the best manufacturers around the globe. Further, it presence spreads to about 75 countries, despite getting much revenue from the American market. For that reason, I agree that the company is best known for the provision of premium quality coffee, as well as, best customer service.
Despite being a global coffee brand and having branches across 75 countries, Starbucks should put much resources on marketing. Traditionally, the company relied mainly on word of mouth. Although it has started marketing its brand through promotions and advertising, it should put more financial resources in ensuring that they create brand awareness in every country that they have a branch. Further, the company should also improve on operational cost. The firm’s operating expenses have been growing over the recent years thereby lowering profits (Koehn, McNamara, Khan, & Legris, 2014). As such, the company should ensure that they lower operational cost while at the same time ensuring that quality of coffee offered is maintained. Finally, Starbucks should also look at its premium pricing strategy because higher prices of coffee can result in the erosion of customer base.
The ability of Starbucks to create a “third place” store depends on the design of the identified building. Despite State or country, the design of Starbuck stores is aimed at fitting particular regions that the store is located while maintaining the same overall “feel” of the coffee brand. As such, the company, while maintaining the overall “feel” of the store, ensured that it fits the overall feeling of the market while maintaining the general design. For that reason, the company involved its customer when designing Starbucks New Zealand. The firm’s mission to create “Sustainably designed, locally relevant stores that inspire and nurture the human spirit one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time.” In regards to visual merchandising, the firm intends to promote an open family environment that enables people to discuss or have good times while having a visual of the outside.
Technologically empowered customers have made Starbucks improve the quality of coffee that they offer to clients since technology empowers customers to search for the best and worst coffee brands in their areas before eventually purchasing. Further, empowerment of clients technologically has helped reduce congestion in most Starbucks stores since customer can pay for coffee while at the comfort of their homes or offices. Despite significance of technology empowerment among clients, it has negatively affected Starbucks. Technology has created a hyper empowered client who are driving an exponential disruption and change thereby causing Starbucks to adapt, evolve, and reorganize to meet the needs of the empowered consumers. Further, technology has also enlightened customers on the quality of coffee that should be provided by the company thereby forcing Starbucks to increase its operation cost to meet the needs of the market.
Based on Starbucks’ retail strategy and plans to satisfy New Zealand target need, the firm should be quick to respond to questions raised by consumers on social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook. On one to one conversation, the company should ensure that its employees are trained to offer satisfactory answers to questions asked by clients. In regards to contemporary retail trends, just like in the U.S, the firm should provide premium quality coffee to its clients with the goal of retaining and attracting new coffee lovers. Finally, for technologically empowered customers, Starbucks should ensure that it is up to date with current needs and changes of the market to avoid losing its customers to competitors.
For technologically empowered customers in New Zealand, Starbucks should develop mobile apps for payment process. Mobile payment system would increase customer base, increase efficiency, and reduce congestion and wait time at the stores. Further, the company should also develop a social media platform for New Zealand consumers where they will be engaged in question and answer forums regarding changes that clients expect or want. Finally, they should advertise products that they offer on social media platforms.
Koehn, N. F., McNamara, K., Khan, N. N., & Legris, E. (2014). Starbucks coffee company: Transformation and renewal.
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