RETAIL MARKETING MANAGEMENT
For this Retail Marketing Management assignment, you will present theoretical and practical analyses of an online retailer (e-tailer). You may choose an existing e-tailer whose website could be redesigned (and potentially rebranded), or you can outline an idea for a completely new e-tailer (an independent or a proposed new subsidiary of an existing parent retail company). The chosen company may be a bricks-and-mortar retailer which could move into selling online, an established multi-channel retailer (‘bricks and clicks’) or a pure player (i.e. online only, such as ASOS). The retailer or e- tailer does not necessarily need to be based in the UK, but if not you will need to include a summary about it in the introduction and you may need to add key links or information in the appendices. Please note that if you choose to propose a new e- tailer, this should be an original concept, and not based on a previous project you have completed. The retailer/e-tailer you choose must not be the same company you chose for your first submission on the RMM module.
Academic literature must be cited in your theoretical discussions, and you should use practical examples to help illustrate your points throughout. You will also need to make reference to retailing or marketing trade journals, e.g. Retail Week, Marketing Week or a product sector-specific journal such as Drapers, to demonstrate to the markers that your retailing knowledge is relevant and up-to-date.
Part 1 Provide a brief overview of the product sector, target market and type of retailing company structure for an existing or new online retailer of your choice. You should draw on theoretical concepts from marketing strategy, e.g. (segmentation, positioning, competitor analysis, etc. in introducing your e-tailer).
Part 2 To engage with the theoretical aspects of the module for this assignment you will need to select two module topics to focus your response in sufficient detail. Choose two of the following topics and address parts 2a and 2b for each of your two topic choices:
• Retail Branding and Marketing Communications
• Retail Consumer Behaviour and Consumer Insights • Retail Legislation and Ethics
• International Retail Marketing
2a) Using the literature, discuss the theory relating to your two chosen topics (from the four choices above). Explain why these chosen topics are so important to the success of online retailers in general and to the specific one you’ve chosen. (40 marks)
2b) How would you design/redesign the website of your chosen e-tailer on the basis of the theory you have discussed, to optimise the company’s performance?
In addressing parts 2a and 2b, you could also discuss how the chosen topics will affect your e-tailer’s image and the importance of brand identity to e-tailers, particularly the brand name. It is acceptable to refer to relevant research on any of these topics in relation to bricks-and-mortar retailers, to ensure that sufficient sources will be available. Please make sure to complete your report with a brief conclusion of course, highlighting the main conclusions and citing key publications.
• Buying and merchandising – For a new e-tailer, this should cover the selection of merchandise; considering the mix of breadth and depth of merchandise, evaluating how it suits the needs of target customers. For an existing retailer/e-tailer, you should critically evaluate the existing merchandise mix, and suggest ways of improving this, with justification. You may also wish to consider other aspects of merchandising in your response.
• Website Design – Areas for consideration include: general ambience created by the page design and layout, product range offered on the website, navigation around the website, interior design, lighting and décor, the e-tailer’s market position, adverts and other types of marketing communications (promotions). You are not expected to design the website yourself (although feel free to include visual design suggestions if you have the skills for this) but you should describe how it should be redesigned, as you might do if you were briefing a design agency to do this for your company. You can include images from other e-tailers’ websites as suggestions for your recommended style/layout if you wish to.
· Management and customer service – Consider key criteria in offering suitable online customer service, e.g. will you offer customers the opportunity to talk to or message staff in real-time by phone or online? Could chatbots be used? What written information would you need to include to provide good customer service (e.g. FAQs) and how/where would this be presented on the website? Which personnel roles would be required to run the online functions and how would they be structured to run effectively? If there is scope for development for international trade, you can also consider the management structure for this.
Overall word limit: 3000 words maximum
Assignments should be typed, using 1.5 spacing and an easy-to-read 12-point font. Assignments and dissertations/business projects must not exceed the word count indicated in the module handbook/assessment brief.
The word count should:
▪ Include all the text, including title, preface, introduction, in-text citations, quotations, footnotes and any other items not specifically excluded below.
▪ Exclude diagrams, tables (including tables/lists of contents and figures), equations, executive summary/abstract, acknowledgements, declaration, bibliography/list of references and appendices. However, it is not appropriate to use diagrams or tables merely as a way of circumventing the word limit. If a student uses a table or figure as a means of presenting his/her own words, then this is included in the word count.
Examiners will stop reading once the word limit has been reached, and work beyond this point will not be assessed. Checks of word counts will be carried out on submitted work, including any assignments or dissertations/business projects that appear to be clearly over-length. Checks may take place manually and/or with the aid of the word count provided via an electronic submission. Where a student has intentionally misrepresented their word count, the School may treat this as an offence under Section IV of the General Regulations of the University. Extreme cases may be viewed as dishonest practice under Section IV, 5 (a) (x) of the General Regulations.
Very occasionally it may be appropriate to present, in an appendix, material which does not properly belong in the main body of the assessment but which some students wish to provide for the sake of completeness. Any appendices will not have a role in the assessment – examiners are under no obligation to read appendices and they do not form part of the word count. Material that students wish to be assessed should always be included in the main body of the text.
Guidance on referencing can be found in the programme handbook and on ULTRA.
Performance in the summative assessment for this module is judged against the following criteria:
- Relevance to question(s)
- Organisation, structure and presentation
- Depth of understanding
- Analysis and discussion
- Use of sources and referencing
- Overall conclusions
The word count should include all the text (plus endnotes and footnotes), but exclude diagrams, tables, bibliography, references and appendices. Guidance on referencing can be found in your Assessment handbook under ‘Things you Need to Know’ on Sharepoint.
PLAGIARISM AND COLLUSION
Students suspected of plagiarism, either of published work or the work of other students, or of collusion will be dealt with according to School and University guidelines.
Your assignment will be put through the plagiarism detection service.
END OF ASSESSMENT