Whole Foods Market’s Generic & Intensive Growth Strategies

Whole Foods Market generic strategy, intensive growth strategies, Porter model, objectives, case study and analysis
Whole Foods Market headquarters in Austin, Texas. Whole Foods Market’s generic strategy (based on Porter’s model) complements the company’s intensive growth strategies for successful strategic direction. (Photo: Public Domain)

Whole Foods Market’s generic strategy relates with the company’s intensive growth strategies to ensure competitiveness in the industry. With more than 58,000 employees, Whole Foods Market continues to use its generic strategy to stand out against competitors. These competitors include other grocery firms and health food stores. In addition, Whole Foods Market uses its intensive growth strategies to ensure business development and expansion, now that the firm maintains overseas operations. Whole Foods Market effectively implements its generic strategy, which is supported through intensive growth strategies. This strategic combination enables the company to keep growing over time. Whole Foods Market applies its generic strategy in combination with its intensive growth strategies to meet business objectives.

Based on Michael Porter’s model, Whole Foods Market’s generic strategy indicates the general, common or broad strategic approach of the firm to inclusively or comprehensively define business strategic direction. The intensive strategies for growth specify the approaches that Whole Foods Market applies for continued growth of revenues and market presence.

Whole Foods Market’s Generic Strategy (Porter’s Model)

Whole Foods Market uses a broad differentiation generic strategy (based on Porter’s model). In this generic strategy, the company separates itself from competitors. This separation is achieved through unique features that define Whole Foods Market’s output. For instance, the company’s main selling point is the organic or natural characteristics of its products. Also, in this generic strategy, Whole Foods Market targets all market segments. For example, the firm’s products are suitable for all customers regardless of age and gender. The company is effective in using this generic strategy, as reflected in the popularity and continued growth of the Whole Foods Market brand.

One of the strategic objectives of Whole Foods Market based on the generic strategy of broad differentiation is to maximize product quality. For example, the company always seeks products with the least possible artificial ingredients because these products stand out compared to competitors. Another strategic objective of Whole Foods Market based on its generic strategy is to expand its supply chain. This supply chain involves farmers or producers that comply with Whole Foods Market’s quality standards.

Whole Foods Market’s Intensive Strategies (Intensive Growth Strategies)

Market Penetration. Whole Foods Market uses market penetration as a primary intensive growth strategy. This intensive strategy supports the company’s growth by increasing market reach and revenues. For example, Whole Foods Market opens new stores in the United States to gain a bigger market share. This intensive growth strategy uses Whole Foods Market’s generic strategy to ensure profitability of new stores based on the attractiveness of natural or organic products.

Market Development. Whole Foods Market uses market development as its secondary intensive strategy for growth. This intensive growth strategy applies when the firm enters new markets or new market segments. For example, Whole Foods Market entered the U.K market in 2004 by acquiring Fresh & Wild stores. This intensive growth strategy uses Whole Foods Market’s generic strategy of broad differentiation by attracting new customers in new markets to high quality natural and organic products in its stores.

Product Development. Whole Foods Market only uses product development as a supporting intensive strategy for growth. This intensive growth strategy involves offering new products to gain more customers or revenues. For example, in 2000, Whole Foods Market started offering fish certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council. In 2008, the company eliminated disposable plastic bags in its stores to make its retail service more attractive to environmentally conscious consumers. This intensive strategy for growth strengthens Whole Foods Market’s generic strategy through product quality or uniqueness.

References
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