2.0 SWOT ANALYSIS
High quality is the major strength that makes M&S successful. Customers always find high quality goods such as fresh fruits,vegetables, and other superior goods in M&S's food hall (Ciao,2002). With many people turning to eat vegetarian meals, M&S grasps the customer's need. M&S has high quality of products that are the food and other products, such as baby products and women's underwear.
M&S has high reputation for focusing on customer service.(Christie,2002). This is one of the most important methods to make a good relationship between customers and M&S. For example, when women want to buy underwears for themselves, the shop assistants will help them to measure sizes and give them good suggestions.
Shopping environment also plays a big role as M&S strength, where M&S tries to make customers feel more convenient and comfortable. It makes stores brighter, and uses modern designs (Rungfapaisarn, 2001). All goods in the shop can be seen immediately. Furthermore, customers do not worry about being drowned in many shelves and avoiding multitudinous people.
One of M&S's strengths is its strict and excellent manager training system (Retail Technology,1999). Every manager of M&S must be familiar with duty of every post. In fact,managers of M&S are arranged practice of every post. It helps them to improve both work experience and management skills.
Clothing Lack Segmentation:-
The clothing market of M&S has many segments. In fact, the merchandise, especially ladies outwear, is outmoded design and cut. In addition, affluent younger consumers prefer purchasing brand-labels, such as Grap, Next and Topshop (Jobber,2001:149). '
The non-performance of the home delivery/shopping service even sometimes involves wedding lists. Customers were told that items were out of stock' (Jobber,2001:149). Customers complain the defect of e-shopping and delivery services. To some extent, M&S suffers from the unbalance between the stock and Information Technology System.
Waste Store Spaces:-
Another problem is that M&S has many stores spaces. In fact, it has added 75 percent of square footage since the early Eighties, but its market share in clothing has not increased (Stewart,2000). M&S needs to find some new products to stuff its extra spaces.
Internet technology has developed fast, it offers an opportunity to increase the demand for the online products (Zakon, 1999). In terms of this circumstance, buying products online became a new trend. Customers are getting used to accept the model and adapt it to their daily lives, and the demand for this kind of products would be increased in the future.
Healthy eating offers an opportunity that the demand of specific food will be increased (Leyshon, 2002). People pay attention to the life quality, they request companies to offer varied products, to satisfy their needs. For example, in the food market, M&S does good segmentation in providing the vegetarian, low fat or organic food. This is the advantage that the competitors have not aware of it.
The Company owned stores in the Republic of Ireland and Hong Kong and has 131 franchise stores in 28 countries operating through a network of successful partnerships (Marks & Spencer, 2002d). In the future the company will expand its business beyond the existing area.
Strong competitors are the most threat to M&S. For example in the food market, there are four main supermarkets, such as Tesco, Asda, Safeway and Sainsbury (Ocr, 2002). They provide not only high quality but also value added products to build customers' loyalty. In the clothing market, Gap, Next, Topshop and other fashionable brands may compete...
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