||The top 10 leading global retailers are exemplary as far as operations and management practices are concerned and are often imitated. Other retailers can uplift their performance levels if they learn from the key successful factors (KSF) of high performance retailers. This study takes the top 10 global retailers, according to “Global Powers of Retailing 2014”, as case study.|
First of all, at the industrial level, this study aims to figure out what KSFs a high performance retailer should have in the highly competitive retail industry. Secondly, at the corporate level, this study conducts case studies to describe the current operating scenarios of the top 10 retailers and to find out the strategic positioning, KSFs and sustainable competitive advantages of each of these 10 retailers. Finally, this study classifies the 10 retailers into 5 categories based on two indexes, namely, “multi-nationality” and “competitive strategy”. Then the KSFs of each type are analyzed, critiqued and with improvements suggested upon them.
This study mainly conducts literature survey and personal interviews either through phone or face-to-face. Participants in this study include two experienced managers in the retail industry and three professors with expertise in the international business field. The results of this study are as follows:
1. The five KSFs of the retail industry are “choosing an ideal location”, “reducing costs through economies of scale”, supply chain management”, “customer-orientation” and “development of private brands”.
2. The five categories of the 10 retailers
(1) Multinational corporations with cost leadership strategy: The KSFs of this type are “establishment of private brands strategy” and “entering new markets through strategic alliance, joint venture and acquisition”.
(2) Non-multinational corporations with cost leadership: The characteristics of this type are diversified as far as kinds of business are concerned, such as pharmacy, clinic and fuel center attached to the food store.
(3) Multinational corporations with differentiation: The KSF of this type is analyzing data from membership cards in order to satisfy the demands of varied customers.
(4) Non-multinational corporations with differentiation: The characteristics of this type are emphasis on design and fashion. Catching consumers’ attention with exclusive private brand products designed by famous designers.
(5) Multinational corporations with focus: The KSFs of this type are “warehouse-mode” and “reduce costs on decorating, sales field and human resource”. Thus reciprocating customers with a better price.