Marks & Spencer is a British multinational retail business company. Michael Marks and Thomas Spencer laid the foundation of the company in 1884. Since then M&S brand has launched approximately more than 1463 location points across the world. The headquarters of the company is located in London.
Some of the main products of Marks and Spencer are home products, food and edible items, and clothing. The company sells products under its own brand name. M&S is a listed company under the London Stock Exchange. Here is the Pestle Analysis of Marks and Spencer.
The company is employing approximately 80000 people in 2020. However, in August 2020, the company announced that it would cut down 7000 jobs due to the covid-19 pandemic. The annual revenue of the company in 2020 was 10181.9 million pounds. Out of which the net income of the company was 27.4 million pounds.
Today, we’ll discuss the swot analysis of Marks and Spencer to understand its various internal and external factors in detail.
Strengths of Marks and Spencer (M&S)
Some of the prominent strengths of the Marks & Spencer are as follows;
Marks & Spencer has been in the market for the past 136 years. It’s one of the leading retail businesses in the UK. The company began its retail journey with Penny Bazaar at Kirkgate Market. The brand has made many big partnerships over the years across the world. A plethora of experience is a huge plus point for the company.
Marks and Spencer has the reputation of providing quality products to its customers in the market. That’s why when people go out shopping in the streets of the UK; they prefer to go to Marks & Spencer. According to Statista, it said that Marks and Spencer are the second-most popular supermarket in the UK.
M&S doesn’t only have an online store, but it also got an offline physical store in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. According to an estimate, the company has 1463 outlets across the world and out of which 1035 there in the UK. Online stores and offline physical outlets have helped the company to expand its business worldwide.
Variety of Products
Marks and Spencer offer a variety of products to its customers. For instance, the company has been offering a variety and vegetables for the past more than 40 years out of 136 years. The brand has made very good relationships with local farmers to bring fresh products and serve them to the customers.
The company “suppliers management section” shows that it has approximately over 400 suppliers with 800 sites located in 44 countries worldwide. The brand offers 500 different types of prepared vegetables, salads, and fruits to its customers. There’s no other supermarket to offer such a variety of products to the customers like M & S.
Famous Designers’ Brands
Marks & Spencer has given a place to a large number of famous designers of different brands at its stores. Some of those are North Coast, Autograph, Collezione, Big & Tall, Blue Harbour, Indigo collection, Portfolio, Classic, Per Una, Limited Collection, and many more. When the company has brought many brands under one roof, it has made M & S stronger than ever.
Weaknesses of Marks and Spencer (M&S)
Some of the main weaknesses of the Marks & Spencer are as follows;
According to a report by Wood 2019, the sale in some of the stores of M&S was declining by the end of 2019. It was because of the poor supply chain system and the non-availability of products. The same thing happened during the Christmas season of 2017, the company couldn’t meet the required demand for food and clothing items. It made a very bad impact on the image of the company.
Perception of Public
There’s a perception among the general public that M&S don’t offer clothes to the young and teenagers. Many perceive that the company serves only older people. Although this perception is wrong; but it has cost the company a lot. If the majority of customers are elderly, it doesn’t mean that it only serves older people.
High Cost due to Manual Processes
One of the major drawbacks of Marks & Spencer is that the company heavily relies on manual operations. It is costly and consumes a lot of time. Many old companies and organizations have already adopted the latest technology to mechanize various processes. If the company adopts the latest tech, then it would the brand to save time, cost and become efficient.
Opportunities for Marks and Spencer (M&S)
Some of the main opportunities available to the Mark & Spencer are as follows;
As we know that Marks & Spencer is a multinational brand and the company has opened up stores in countries like India, Russia, Brazil, Poland, and Indonesia. Now the company needs to expand in those countries. It means that the brand has to play an active role by increasing more and more branches in those countries.
Marks & Spencer also has an online store. But when we compare the company’s position with other world’s leading online retail e-commerce stores like Amazon or eBay. Then M&S is far behind in the competition. Even though the company is old, well experienced, and has a strong brand name.
Ecommerce retail is the future of shopping because people are getting busy and they avoid public and crowded places. Therefore, the company should focus on the growth of the online store. As a matter of fact, M & S has recently announced that the brand is planning to bring its clothing and home product items online.
Market segmentation is the process of dividing the customer market into different groups based on similar groups. If we look at the policy of M & S, then it follows the same principle of opening up mega stores everywhere. If the company follows the customer segmentation policy of offering the products based on the needs of customers.
Customer segmentation policy would serve the company in many ways. Like the management and maintenance cost would be lower, small stores mean that low rental cost, and an increase in profit consequently.
Threats to Marks and Spencer (M&S)
The retail market in the UK and across the world is getting very competitive. Some of the main competitors of Marks & Spencer are Amazon, Tesco, John Lewis, ASDA, Debenhams, Sainsbury, Sports Direct, Morrisons, Gap, and Next.
If the company doesn’t change its strategy, then it would fade away from the market gradually because the competitors are very strong. If the scale company’s position in the global, brand’s graph is moving downward. For instance, M&S has been shutting its stores in the UK, France, and China.
After a careful study of the swot analysis of Marks and Spencer, it comes to our attention that the company is very strong and has a good reputation for providing quality products. But the threat of competitors is also real. Therefore, shutting down stores is not the solution. The management should segment the customers, and keep opening the stores targeting the needs of stores. This is the only way to move forward.