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Strategic Marketing How Distribution and Retail have changed in the

STRATEGIC MARKETING 5

StrategicMarketing: How Distribution and Retail have changed in the Past TenYears

StrategicMarketing: How Distribution and Retail have changed in the Past TenYears

Thedynamisms of the current world, which incorporate technology inalmost all its aspects, have impacted nearly every phase of doingbusiness. According to Peterson, Balasubramanian and Bronnenberg(2014) for instance, the retail sector has seen a lot oftransformation courtesy of new technologies as well as new ways ofconnecting with consumers from across the world. Ideally, this meansthat traditional retailers have to conform to these changes for themto remain relevant in the current fast moving environment. Falk,Sockel and Chen (2015) note that conforming in this context mightentail reimagining how to create and capture value. More so, they(retailers) might have to figure out more than just the omnichannelpositioning. According to Ervin (2015), this is necessary since ithelps discover the best uses for each and every asset in possession.

TheTransformation in the Distribution and Retail Sector

Itis without doubt that distribution of goods and services has rapidlyand dramatically changed over the past ten years. In fact, thistransformation has also been experienced in the retail landscapewhich is growing more dynamic every other day. One of the drivingforces for this transformation as documented by Ervin (2015) is thefact that consumers nowadays are becoming more informed. As mentionedearlier, new technologies are giving them a lot of options as far asconsumption of the actual good and services is concerned. This isexhibited in the way product choices are proliferating quicker thanthey used to do in the past 10 years.

Therehave been a number of defining moments that are giving present dayretailers a challenge of figuring out new distribution and retailtricks so as to remain in business. According to Falk, Sockel andChen (2015) for instance, current markets are flooded with new smallplayers that are notably fragmenting the retail landscape. This hasbeen courtesy of reduced or lowered barriers to market entry. Anothernotable change has been the rapid growth of the online marketplace.Companies such as Apple and Amazon have mastered the art oftranscending geographical proximity and as a result, they areentering in markets never thought of before.

Ideally,online retailing has had much of its toll on distribution. Today forinstance, many small niche players are able to expand the demand fortheir highly specific offerings through the internet. To some extentthis is setting a level ground with even the big players who arereluctant to embrace the idea (Peterson, Balasubramanian &ampBronnenberg, 2014). Therefore, in the next five or ten years, it ismore likely that these new technologies are going to push for thediscovery of new retail models that will further enhance the wayretailers will be connecting with their customers. There is also thepossibility of new approaches such as on-demand fulfillmentreinventing the manner in which inventory is held.

HowConsumers have changed and how their Changes Correlate to Changes inRetail and Distribution

Everymarket research points at a dramatic change in the behaviors ofnearly all consumers. According to Falk, Sockel and Chen (2015) forinstance, the present digital age has had a significant impact onnearly all consumer trends including their approaches to research,how they recommend brands and the factors that influence their finalpurchasing decisions. Perhaps one of the biggest influencer has beenthe rapid growth of the internet, particularly social media. Ervin(2015) notes that these changes have given consumers from across theworld a lot of power in regard to how they control what they wish topurchase. Ideally, having an online presence (running social mediapages) has become inevitable for companies since majority of thetarget market is spending most of their time online.

Anothernotable change in customer behavior has been the obsession withsearch engines. On this, Ervin (2015) notes that technology has madepeople very lazy. Unlike in the past, time spent on general shoppinghas drastically reduced since consumers nowadays have the option ofgoogling the exact product or service they are looking for. In fact,search has become the heart of present day buying behavior. Thiscorrelates with the changing trends in retail and distributionbecause companies have now been forced to push for significant onlinepresence for purposes of their products and services being easilydiscovered by the search engines.

Theadvancements in technology and options such as search engines haveall led to the growth of personalized buying behavior. Apparently, aresearch by Falk, Sockel and Chen (2015) documents that most peoplehave unique purchasing paths even if they are shopping for the sameproduct or service. The impact of this on retail and distribution hasbeen a complete overhaul in the approach to marketing. For instance,Peterson, Balasubramanian and Bronnenberg (2014) note that it hasbecome increasingly necessary for marketers to study their targetaudience with the objective of discovering what they want and howthey want it delivered. Basically, this means that these marketershave no option but invest in mastering the different individualpersonas we currently have in our vast global market. Thisinformation is extremely important because it influences criticaldecisions such as those touching on market segmentation and valuecreation.

References

Ervin,B. (2015). Important Stats on How Consumer Behavior Has Changed inthe Digital Age. Journalof Marketing, 5(3),23-28.

Falk,L.K., Sockel, H. &amp Chen, K. (2015). E-Commerce and Consumer`sExpectations: What Makes a Website Work? Journalof Website Promotion, 1(1),65–75.

Peterson,R. A., Balasubramanian, S., &amp Bronnenberg, B. J. (2014).Exploring the implications of the Internet for consumer marketing.Journalof the Academy of Marketing Science, 25(2),329–346.