Every successful company has a competitive advantage that can be achieved in various ways (Hallsworth et al. 149). Some companies develop innovative products while other focus on information management. Shoppers Drug Mart pays significant attention to the development of an efficient retail network that makes the business attractive to customers. This paper includes a brief analysis of retail formats of the company as well as their impact on the organization’s functional areas.
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Shoppers Drug Mart’s Retail Formats & Specialty Services
Shoppers Drug Mart’s retail network includes Shoppers Drug Mart, Shoppers Simply Pharmacy, Murale, Shoppers Home Health Care, Specialty Health Network, MediSystem Pharmacy (“Retail Formats and Specialty Services”).
These retail formats include associate-owned locations offering products in such areas as beauty, health, and convenience, retail pharmacies, beauty destinations, stores providing assisted-living devices, equipment, pharmaceutical products as well as innovative products and services that can be used by patients of long-term care facilities. Specialty Health Network provides specialty pharmacy services that can be used by patients suffering from chronic or acute conditions.
Effects on Functional Areas
This diverse retail network has a significant impact on the company’s functional areas. The company tries to address one of the major needs of the contemporary customer and tries to make its stores (as well as the entire network) as convenient as possible (Tandon 5). For instance, it affects the company’s marketing as Shoppers Drug Mart targets different audiences that can be reached through different channels. Some of the most effective marketing strategies are characterized by the focus on the customer (Donaldson 252).
Shoppers Drug Mart tries to meet the needs of diverse populations including people concerned about their health or beauty, suffering from acute or chronic conditions, and so on. Importantly, the company is exploring innovative ways to meet the needs of its customers as well as the entire healthcare system as Shoppers Drug Mart promotes certain empowerment of pharmacists in minor ailments (Shoppers Drug Mart 16). It is possible to note that Shoppers Drug Mart is an advocate of empowerment of pharmacist as the company believes that these healthcare professionals can address minor ailments.
This marketing strategy has an influence on the company’s business operations. Shoppers Drug Mart tries to create a retail network that has stores and units in all communities. The company focuses on achieving maximal outreach. Clearly, this has an impact on its finance. The organization has to invest heavily in the establishment of new locations and the development of numerous alliances (“Retail Formats and Specialty Services”). It is also necessary to add that human resources management is also affected as the company pays a lot of attention to training as well as proper reimbursement of employees (Shoppers Drug Mart 4).
The Role of Retail Format and Specialty Services in Attracting Customers
Shoppers Drug Mart have an extensive network of retail formats and services offered to customers, which can be a significant competitive advantage. By providing a wide range of products, including beauty, health, and convenience, the company can reach a wider audience of customers. Moreover, the ability to buy all the necessary products in one store is appealing to customers. A variety of retail formats, on the other hand, is also convenient for the customers, as it allows the company to cover a large share of local populations.
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For example, Shoppers Simply Pharmacy shops are located in medical buildings and clinics, which allows customers to buy the required pharmaceutical products straight after a doctor’s consultation. Murale stores, on the other hand, address the beauty needs of customers by providing advice and services related to skin care and beauty. Lastly, the Shoppers Drug Marts have 1,259 locations throughout the country, which means that the customer from any location can find a shop close to his or her workplace or home.
Finally, the range of specialty services provided by Shoppers also attracts a variety of customers living with chronic diseases and conditions. For instance, Shoppers Home Health Care provide assisted-living devices and equipment to suit a variety of needs and have over 50 store locations to reach a wider audience. Specialty Health Network, on the other hand, provides complex drug therapy for patients, and Medisystem provides for the needs of patients living in long-term care facilities. Thus, the range of products offered, the variety of store formats, and the convenience of locations make Shoppers an attractive provider of health and beauty products and services.
Maintaining the Market Share
One of the significant decisions that allowed Shopper Drug Mart to capture a significant market share was the introduction of the superstore format (Warnica par. 5). Superstores are multi-functional stores that offer an entire range of products instead of focusing on a single segment of the market. For instance, Shoppers Drug Marts offer products in beauty, health, and convenience, which allows them to provide for a variety of customers’ needs, thus improving its ability to preserve a leading position in one of the most competitive markets (Warnica par. 5).
The wide range of products offered in the same store is attractive as it allows customers to consider various options and choose the product that fits their needs. Offering various categories of products in one shop, on the other hand, is also effective as it eliminates the need to visit several different shops in order to purchase all the necessities, which is why the majority of customers prefer to shop at superstores.
Another feature that helps the company to preserve its leading market share is the high availability of stores. With over 1250 stores located across the country, Shoppers Drug Mart ensured that the customers could access their stores from any location. Both features make shopping at Shoppers Drug Mart stores more convenient to customers, which allows the company to sustain its market share.
Non-Pharmacy Business and Consumer Behavior
Certain areas of non-pharmacy business can affect the interests and behavior of Shoppers Drug Mart consumers. For instance, as the stores offer a wide range of beauty products, the trends promoted by the beauty industry have a significant impact on the customers’ needs. The fashion industry may also influence the customers’ behavior; for instance, the fashion industry is largely responsible for the people’s desire to get slim, attractive bodies, which raises the popularity of various slimming and dietary products offered in stores.
In conclusion, it is possible to note that Shoppers Drug Mart has an effective retail network as it meets the needs of diverse populations. The company has a network of over a thousand locations nationwide. The company uses different formats and provides different products and services, which has a significant impact on other functional areas. The company has to invest heavily in the development of such a diverse network.
The company forms numerous alliances to handle financial issues. The focus on the development of the company’s staff is another characteristic feature that is also associated with additional investment and sustainable development of the business. Shoppers Drug Mart can consider making alliances with leading grocery retailer to enhance its presence in the national and international markets.
Donaldson, Lex. “Evidence-Based Management (EBMgt) Using Organizational Facts.” The Oxford Handbook of Evidence-Based Management, edited by Denise M. Rousseau, OUP USA, 2012, pp. 249-262.
Hallsworth, Alan G, et al. “The planning Implications of New Retail Format Introductions in Canada and Britain.” The Internationalisation of Retailing, edited by Gary Akehurst and Nicholas Alexander, Routledge, 2013, pp. 148-164.
“Retail Formats and Specialty Services.” 2012. Web.
Shoppers Drug Mart. “Sustainable Solutions Report: Pharmacist Interventions in Minor Ailments.” 2016. Web.
Tandon, Sharad. The Expansion of Modern Grocery Retailing and Trade in Developing Countries. DIANE Publishing, 2012.
Warnica, Richard. “Less Drug, More Shoppers.” Canadian Business. 2013. Web.