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Wal-Mart offers a broad variety of merchandise and services, a strength that has continued to evolve and improve since its foundation. Their...

the strategic objectives, the tools used by the company to measure customer satisfaction. Discuss how these measurements could be used to enhance quality planning.

Wal-Mart offers a broad variety of merchandise and services, a strength that has continued to evolve and improve since its foundation. Their advantage over other retailers is grounded in the fact that most customers consider Wal-Mart a "one stop shopping experience." At Wal-Mart you can find items ranging from pastries and chips to computer equipment and high fidelity DVD systems. Most Wal-Mart shopping centers even offer automotive services, such as oil changes and tire service. Wal-Mart is rapidly expanding its operations into other parts of the world with a strategy that involves transferring its considerable domestic expertise in distribution and discount retailing to other countries. Its status as and most sophisticated user of distribution-retailing know-how has served it well in rapidly building its foreign sales and profitability (Thomson & Strickland, 2001). Wal-Mart has also started offering online sales to help broaden their customer base. They have launched a Web site that offers one-stop shopping strategy. The ability to customize to and meet any customer segment. Wal-Mart's greatest strength is its dominant market share position in the industry. The expectation is that Wal-Mart will continue to expand market share across virtually all of the business segments in which it competes. The company will press on this year and beyond with the addition of hundreds of new stores, millions of square feet of additional selling space, and an expanding distribution center network. Another one of Wal-Mart's strengths is that is has found its niche. Wal-Mart retail stores have excelled at serving mainstream shoppers with competitively priced high-demand items, from milk and cereal to shoes and shirts. Wal-Mart's most valuable assets are the supercenters they operate. These stores combine the usual Wal-Mart retail store with food merchandising. In
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finding its niche, Wal-Mart decision makers considered the growing ethnic diversity of the American consumers (Howell, 2002). One of the population groups that have drawn the most attention in recent years by retailers in general is the Hispanic population. It's the largest and fastest-growing ethnic group that makes up 12.5% of the U.S. population, and projected to increase to 17% by 2020. African-Americans are the second largest group at 12.3%, followed by Asians that account for 3.6%. From Wal- Mart's perspective, serving an ethnic customer is very important and represents a very sizable chunk of their sales (Howell, 2002). Wal-Mart's slogan is "Spend Less. Live Better." The giant retailer prides itself on providing customers with low-cost items that beat competitors. Wal-Mart reported a 3.6 percent increase in net income from cost cutting, according to an August 2010 Associated Press article. Customers are cautious about spending because of a slow economy, and Wal-Mart continues to be their low- cost option. Customers choose to shop at Super Wal-Mart centers for groceries, rather than the local grocery store because of discounted items. For example, Wal-Mart offers $1 ketchup bottles and $4 for a case of soda. The Associated Press article stated that Wal-Mart benefited during the recession as affluent shoppers were forced to downgrade to cheaper options.
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