1. Zappos transformed the shopping experience by providing online market place and making customers comfortable buying shoes in the internet. The core competency which distinguishes Zappos from competitors was a focus on service (it was service company selling shoes). The following sources of competitive advantages allowed the company to gain and maintain this competency:
fast web-site providing extensive online product information; free rapid delivery of products;
free 365 day return policy;
free 24/7 call center with well-trained operators whose primary goal was customer loyalty;
excellent supply chain operations with communication through web-interface system. Corporate culture has a strong influence on all aspects of the business, including core competencies. In fact, core competencies are developed based on culture. To WOW everyone they come into contact with, including customers, employees and partners, was part of their culture. Zappos was successfully doing everything to sustain it by im proving web-site, call center, distribution warehouse operations, etc, which proves that its core competencies are well sustainable.
2. If it is really of a value to the customer, it is important to the customer experience, because it is a sign of excellent service and WOW customers. However, if the customer doesn’t need it, the cost of shipping will not cost the perceived benefits of faster delivery. As we have seen, the customer satisfaction decreased, if the customers didn’t receive a purchase ov ernight, even though they didn’t need overnight delivery but it was promised by Zappos. Considering cost-conscious environment, I would recommend Zappos to provide the customer a choice for method of delivery. Zappos could provide ground delivery, as usually, for free. But, if the customer really needs faster expedited delivery, he/she should pay for transportation cost. 3. I wouldn’t recommend Zappos to make any big expansion plans, taking into account difficult economic...
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