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Product/ service failure

Wal-Mart planned to introduce a sophisticated customer service program which threatened many of its competitors because German discount supermarket chains often do not provide good customer service. Therefore, good customer service, combined with low prices, could have been a new market niche in Germany. One part of Wal-Mart’s customer service program was called the “ten foot rule”. Every ten feet, a service employee offered some help to the customer (Knorr and Arndt 2003). However, the customer reaction was rather negative, because customers who normally do their grocery shopping in discount supermarket chains are used to self-service. They do not necessarily expect to talk with employees. Therefore, the “ten foot rule” was perceived as rather annoying and did not result in a reputation for providing good customer service.

Wal-Mart also imported the idea of placing a “greeter” at the entrance to the store. Again, German customers were not used to this custom, and they did not adopt this “service” with any enthusiasm.

Conclusion of Wal-Mart Mini-case

Wal-Mart tried to apply its US success formula in an unmodified manner to the German market. As a result, they didn’t have sufficient knowledge about the market structure and key cultural / political issues. In addition, structural factors prevented Wal-Mart from fully implementing its successful business model. Also, there were some instances of product or service failure. The final outcome was that Wal-Mart had to abandon its offerings in Germany

Product failure: examples from Wal-mart's investment in Germany
Reasons for Failure Examples of Wal-Mart in Germany
Insufficient demand (MS / BM) Wal-Mart’s low price strategy didn’t create any competitive advantage since many German local retailers were already using that strategy.
Existing competitors are too strong (MS) Wal-Mart’s biggest competitor, Metro, took specific counter-measures to prevent Wal-Mart from executing their expansion plan.
Failure to develop and communicate unique selling propositions (USP) (BM) The profit margins in the German retail industry were already low before Wal-Mart entered. Wal-Mart was not able to convince German consumers that their prices were really that much lower than the competition.
Unexpected change in the environment— Economic downturn N/A for Wal-Mart case
Competing new technology successfully introduced N/A for Wal-Mart case
Change in culture (i.e. change in corporate culture, change in consumer taste or fashion) (C) Wal-Mart did not adapt well to the German corporate culture.
Changing standard of government regulations (P) Managers were not familiar with German laws and regulations, so there were violations. In general, Wal-Mart’s anti-union policies conflicted with the strong German union. Wal-Mart also tried to sell their products below manufacturing costs, which is illegal in Germany.
The price is too high, so trial is discouraged N/A for Wal-Mart case
Poor promotion/communication plan (C) Language barrier between English-speaking managers and older German business people who don’t speak English.
In retailing, failure to secure attractive sites (MS) There were not enough appropriate locations for Wal-Mart stores available in Germany.
Product failure (PF) tores were often located far apart. As a result, logistics costs were high. One of Wal-Mart’s main success factors is to minimize costs, but this goal was restricted by high logistical costs.
Poor service quality—during or after sales (PF) ome of Wal-Mart’s methods for providing service were not accepted by German customers. For instance, the customers did not like the concept of the “greeter”.
Failure to get corporation from key supply-chain members (BM) Several key suppliers refused to supply goods, for fear of tarnishing their corporate image.
Notes for Table 4: The reasons for deletion are divided into five categories according to the following legend:MS: Market structure; BM: Business model; C: Culture and communication; P: Politics and regulation; PF: Product failure

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
nanopartical of organic/inorganic / physical chemistry , pdf / thesis / review
Ali
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
learn
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
learn
Google
da
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Bhagvanji
hey
Giriraj
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
revolt
da
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
ya I also want to know the raman spectra
Bhagvanji
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
Damian
yes that's correct
Professor
I think
Professor
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
Alexandre
nanocopper obvius
Alexandre
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
Rafiq
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
Damian
How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Santosh
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
Mahi
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
Rafiq
if virus is killing to make ARTIFICIAL DNA OF GRAPHENE FOR KILLED THE VIRUS .THIS IS OUR ASSUMPTION
Anam
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Anam
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
Hafiz
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
different types of company
Jamshaid Reply
how to write research title on lean?
GUTU Reply
what is business plan
Sthembiso Reply
how to startup business
Mahesh Reply
A canal is more of a need then a cavity
Commander Reply
what is electronic banking
Segun Reply
what does it mean business eco system?
Mohammed Reply
what is business
Abdul Reply
how can i know my business best resources, cheap and good quality
cabdi Reply
vikash rawat
jagvir Reply
entrepreneurial mobility
Manish Reply

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Source:  OpenStax, Business fundamentals. OpenStax CNX. Oct 08, 2010 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11227/1.4
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