Competitive Advantage Of Costco's Business Model

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Costco’s business model is centered around offering a smaller range of products at incredibly low prices which attracts the consumer. In order to supplement this lowered profit margin, they require their shoppers, both businesses and individuals, to purchase annual memberships. The membership fee accounts for a majority of the company’s profit. Furthermore, Costco operates its under a wholesale warehouse style which eliminates the need for excess handling and workers in the store. The stores are stocked to carry certain big ticket, ‘limited time offer’ goods so that customers feel the need to take advantage of the deal because it may not be there when they next return. The idea behind these strategic decisions is to offer high quality name…show more content…
Their desire is to earn profit, but not at the expense of their employees, environment, customers, or the law. This is what makes the company’s business plan desirable. Not only is the company extremely profitable, but the model is built to last. The lack of turnover reduces the company’s expenditure exponentially. When a company treats its employees well, they want to remain at said company. Furthermore, the company is increasingly appealing to customers and continues to maintain more than 90% of its members year to year. With the leadership at the helm of the company and their commitment to maintaining their competitive advantage, this remains an incredibly appealing business model. However, replicating this model would be incredibly challenging for small scale…show more content…
Two of these reasons stem from Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods. Previously, the grocery market was highly fragmented and Costco had a consistently growing market share. However, investors fear that with Amazon taking over Whole Foods, Amazon may take over yet another segment in the overall market just like they have books and general goods. The market responded with a more than 10% drop in stock price following Amazon’s ‘game changing’ announcement. Image and perception are huge to today’s consumer, and if customers lost faith in Costco’s capabilities and future, this could result in continued drop in stock price. Furthermore, research has shown that there is a high percentage of overlap between Amazon Prime and Costco membership holders. Should Amazon take over the grocery marketplace, Costco could see a serious decline in

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