9. Marketing Mix - Place
|> marketing planning overview >|
|1. overview||2. planning||3. swot||4. marketing plan||5. marketing mix||6. product|
|7. price||8. promotion||9. place||10. literature||11. public relations||12. promos|
|13. advertising||14. sponsorship||15. sales|
Place refers to the means by which your customer acquires your product. This includes the actual place it is purchased (the shop, the telephone, the web page, the warehouse) as well as the actual route of distribution.
The distribution chain
Most consumer goods are purchased from a retailer, who purchase them from a wholesaler/distributor, who purchase them from the manufacture. If the goods were imported there might be more merchants in this distribution chain. Sometimes, this distribution chain can be bypassed or leapt over. In the security industry, some manufacturers of security systems sell their product directly to end users at the same time as selling them to security installation companies at the same time as selling them to national distributors. The point is that these different distribution channels can provide different levels of profitability and they can quite happily run alongside each other provided a well thought through pricing strategy has been decided upon.
For example a consumer is likely to want only one variant of your product and expect to purchase it immediately. A retailer is likely to want limited stock of a number of variants and not expect to pay for 60 days. A distributor is looking at large volumes of product in all its variants at greatly discounted rates. Your ditribution policy needs to take account of these variables. If it does not, then you will find yourself in a very embarassing position with a customer sooner or later which would result in the loss of a sale.
The complication to this approach however is that you need to consider the fact that your 'customer' might be a consumer, a retailer or a distributor and that each of these customers will be looking for perhaps different features or different levels of service.
Needles to say the internet offers a new "Place" to
many business sectors. It has enabled many middlemen to be bypassed resulting
in a price advantage to be offered to the customer followed by the inevitable
increase in volume for the seller.
This could be selling direct to your consumer and missing out the retailer, or it could be direct to your retailer, missing out the wholesaler.
Business growth for you?
Is there any way you could generate extra volume on the internet?
Given the relatively low set-up costs, you should be seriously looking at this avenue! You do not need to set up a complex site, we may be able to set up a simple income-generating site for only a few hundred pounds. I personally favour this approach because it gives you enormous flexibilty in developing your commercial site - especially useful for small businesses with little experience in this medium. You literally develop the site over a few months as you uncover the secrets to success for your market sector. Costs are minimal.
How many small business-owners would like to take on a new business-building strategy that offered almost no risk?