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Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting is an online boutique committed to providing our customers the highest quality fabrics, notions, patterns, and quilting services with the company goal to inspire, educate, and innovate, not only with our attitudes but also with our exceptional customer service skills and community service projects. We desire to help our quilters express their passion through the creation and advancement of their skills into keepsake quilts.
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting has carefully researched and performed a thorough SWOT analysis to ensure the company’s success.
By looking at the internal areas of strengths and weaknesses and the external areas of opportunities and threats, Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting has taken the results into account to prepare a successful marketing plan.
One major strength for Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting is the strength of having the ability to sell online to consumers. By choosing to have an online selling format, the company has the ability to be open to its customers 24 hours a day, seven days a week without the cost of owning a brick-and-mortar location.
In addition, by choosing to sell online Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting has a more open and collaborative approach which is more successful in today’s modern business environment, (Harris & Rae, 2009). Additional strengths include the ability to control inventory by purchasing as much or as little as needed along with the ability to control inventory space and storage, (Watson, 2014). The company also offers unique tutorials and guest educators to draw in new and existing customers with free education videos while promoting products, services, and online views.
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting also has the advantage of being able to introduce specific products and services to a niche market with low expense and a low probability for failure through the use of an online website and social media, (Indrupati & Henari, 2012). A final strength of the business is that it has a service orientation to give back to the community and deserving charities in an effort to be socially responsible.
Weaknesses for the company include the number of time suppliers may take to make deliver product orders which, in return, may cause delayed delivery of customer orders. In addition, Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting’s extensive requirement of travel to acquire fabrics, education, and festival attendances can be expensive. The company also faces the challenge of staying innovative, growing the niche market it serves, and continually offering unique services and products in a constantly changing industry where customers follow trends that change quickly, (Lindsay, 2014).
Many opportunities exist for Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting through the ability to sell online and through the use of social media. Customers are more engaged when shopping online and this limits customer annoyance by not having to wait in line or drive to a store, (Harris & Rae, 2009). In addition, opportunities exist for the company by establishing partnerships and collaborations with industry peers to promote products and extend the company’s brand name and scope, (Lindsay, 2014). Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting also has the advantage of offering customized community service programs to grow its service orientation.
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting has assessed the threats that could harm the business which include the threat of online competitors who serve the same niche market of customers and maintaining search engine optimization over its competitors. An additional threat includes the ever-changing economy and regulations which has an effect on profits for the company, (Lindsay, 2014). The company will also face competition from franchise brick and mortar companies which can offer more products.
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting has established objectives for the company which are realistic, measurable, time-specific, and compared to the benchmark, (Lamb, Hair, & McDaniel, 2015). The company has set the objective of increasing sales yearly by ten percent including a market growth of new customers totaling five percent yearly from January 1, 2019, through December 31, 2024. In addition, Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting plan to have a customer retention rate of 80% through offering excellent customer service and relationship selling. A final objective for the company is to have a social media following of 25,000 followers by December 31, 2024.
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting uses a unique blend of product, placement, price, and promotion that meets the company’s varying needs to achieve optimal results. The company has also incorporated into its strategy the ability to gain an advantage over competitors by offering valuable services and products while consistently providing quality and value to meet the customer’s unique standards. A final marketing strategy Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting will be to utilize the development of technology to fine-tune services and products to achieve competitive success as the company continues to grow, (Harris & Rae, 2009).
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting’s target market was developed to target market segments of the highest interest to the company and to target competitors within the same market, (Lamb, Hair, & McDaniel, 2015). The company features a target age group from youth to elderly ages and appeals to male and females. Through the use of online selling, the company has a geographic worldwide scope and a broad cultural arena. Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting also has a varied pricing structure to meet all budgets.
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting has established a marketing mix of product, placement, promotion, and price to provide customer satisfaction within its target market, (Lamb, Hair, McDaniel, 2015). The company offers unique products and product packaging that is distinct to Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting and this feature helps to establish the company brand. In addition, the company provides excellent after-sale follow-up with customers via surveys and rewards programs with a quality guarantee to customers. Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting placement of its products and services has one distribution center and one distribution warehouse which the company continuously calculates the cost-benefit ratio of purchasing small or large inventories in an effort to have proper placement, (Watson, 2014).
The company uses several vehicles to promote products and services to its best advantage. Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting uses social networks and its website to target its market segment with flash sale promotions, tutorials, and a monthly newsletter, (Indrupati & Henari, 2012). In addition, the company participates in festivals and market conventions to further its promotion and brand. Prices for the company are competitive and flexible to meet the various budgets of its customers. Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting also offers special seasonal pricing to be competitive with seasonal sales such as Black Friday pricing that competitors offer.
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting has put its marketing plan into action by implementing a website opening timeline of January 1, 2019 through March 31, 2019. This timeline gives the company time to stock its inventory and have a functional website. The company has also established a detailed budget with allowances for unknown expenses. In addition, the company has established activity descriptions for all of its activities to ensure success and achieve uniform results with its vendors and task force. The company has implemented a transparent line of communication and will gain the acceptance of colleagues and industry associates, (Lamb, Hair, &McDaniel, 2015).
Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting consistently evaluates and controls its marketing plan and business throughout every process to achieve optimal results. The company continually measures where it is weekly by looking at incoming sales, customer participation, website and social Media views. In addition, the company will evaluate monthly where it plans to be in the future month by reviewing planned sales, promotions, education, and new product offerings. Honey Bee Fabrics and Quilting will control its processes and functions by keeping on track through continually gauging company objectives and adjusting its marketing mix as need to accommodate business needs, (Lamb, Hair, & McDaniel, 2015).
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