As regards its regional competitors, Carrefour is currently Migros' biggest threat. By 2005 it was operating 12 mega, or hyper-markets in Switzerland, with net sales totalling 402 million. Added to that, there is significant incoming competition from Germany's leading retailers, Aldi and Lidl, who announced their intention to expand into the Swiss market. The implication here is that both present and prospective competition are expanding and intensifying, with it being incumbent of Migros to design a strategic marketing plan, based on a careful and critical study of the market situation and environment, should it want to retain its leadership position in the Swiss retail market.
The intent of this report is to draw on strategic marketing and communications theory for the design of a marketing plan as would allow, or enable, Migros to maintain its leadership position in the Swiss retail market.
An analysis of an organisation's market and its external environment function as the building block for the design of any marketing strategy/campaign. This section of the report will, therefore, present a brief overview of Migros' strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT).
On the intra-organisational level, Migros has several exploitable strengths, not least of which its decades-long history in the Swiss market and the resultant bond forged with consumers; its ownership structure in that it is owned by its customers, by the Swiss people themselves; its highly competitive prices; its strong market presence in more than one industry/sector, implying high visibility; consumer perceptions of it as an ethical company which only carries goods which are ethical/produced within strict ethical guidelines; and the fact that its suppliers are, ultimately its consumers all function as strengths unique to Migros.
The primary intra-organisational weakness confronting Migros, as may be deduced from the case study, is its decentralised organisational structure, its defensive, as opposed to offensive, reactions to market and industry developments and quality of suppliers.
The nature of the opportunities existent in the external market is such that Migros is in a unique position to capitalise upon them, starting with the increasing shift towards organic and ethical produce. The market, as in consumers, is becoming much more health conscious at the same time as which it is growing increasing concerned over animal husbandry and poultry farm practices. Insofar as Migros has long taken a stand on these two issues and has, over the years, determinedly linked itself to organic and ethical produce, the identified opportunities work in its favour.
The identified threats, as may be partially inferred from the introductory section and as affirmed through the case study, come in the form of present competitors, such as Coop and Carrefour and potential ones, such as Aldi and Lidl. Compounded with that, Switzerland's "deregulation of the agricultural markets and