How can e-commerce provide a competitive advantage for McDonald’s?
McDonald’s is a terrific example of utilizing e-commerce to provide a competitive advantage for it organization globally (nationally and internationally). Basically, competitive advantage for an organization can be viewed as being able to have the ability to stay ahead of the competition essentially in terms of product differentiation, focus and cost leadership. Through utilizing e-commerce strategies, McDonald's can bring down costs significantly in such a way that it attains cost leadership. That is, becoming the low-cost fast food services provider in relation to the competition. One application of e-commerce might be the elimination of intermediaries through the use of new innovations based on e-commerce technological advances. In fact, McDonald’s has gained a distinct competitive advantage by recognizing and utilizing e-commerce early.
In early 2000, McDonald's took a baby step into e-commerce by investing in San Francisco, California-based Food.com, a company that offered an online food takeout and delivery service. Food.com users could browse menus from more than 14,000 restaurants nationwide and then place orders online. McDonald’s had no intention of going into the food delivery business. Rather, it was committed to new thinking and new technologies for all aspects of our brand,'' according to James Cantalupo, president and vice chairman of McDonald's at the time.
This was followed an announcement in June 2000 by McDonald's Corporation and Accel-KKR, Inc. that they had agreed to form eMac Digital, a new company designed to accelerate the development of global Internet related businesses. eMac Digital would initially focus on business-to-business opportunities that drive efficiencies, maximize cost savings and create new markets and distribution channels. Jack Greenberg, chairman and CEO of McDonald's Corporation, define this strategic business partnership