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Wal-Mart Market Strategy: Cheap vs. Value
VIetnamese company trailer in Wal-Mart parking lots

Wal-Mart Market Strategy:  Cheap vs. Value   

By Ivan Potter
West Kentucky Journal
Clinton, KY. Jan. 23, 2013

As long as Sam Walton controlled the company, “Made in America” was his base slogan and format for securing goods. However, by the 1990s, a new strategy was put into place, “Falling Prices” as seen on TV commercials where the prices were changed as you walked down the isle looking for bargains. Cheap prices became the weapon for securing market share.

Of course this meant having to locate distributors from Asia who worked their employees for some of the cheapest wages on the planet. US domestic factories started closing or moving their base of operations into China or south Asian countries like Vietnam to stay a part of the new Wal-Mart family.

The base Super Wal-Mart has three mega profit centers: food, drugs, and electronics. All three of these centers are located, on purpose, at the opposite ends of the store from each other. Wal-Mart wants its customers to walk as much as possible in order to sell other items on impulse.

Wal-Mart became America’s largest grocer ten years ago when it had successfully forced 25 of the 29 major food chains into bankruptcy. Only Kroger was able to withstand their massive offensive.

Kroger during these early years of the 21st century has initiated a grand strategy of going after the one market that Wal-Mart has always had trouble with: the upscale shopper who wants value and is willing to pay more for it.  Kroger is designing new sections for healthy foods and special items like desserts and bakery goods for more selective shopper.

The Wal-Mart model has been to have a store within 20 to 25 miles of each other throughout rural in the Mid-West and South. This approach ensured Wal-Mart a direct lock on the working poor of America.

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