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Journal cover: International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences

International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences

ISSN: 1756-669X

Online from: 2009

Subject Area: Operations and Logistics Management

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A standardised approach to the world? IKEA in China


Document Information:
Title:A standardised approach to the world? IKEA in China
Author(s):Ulf Johansson, (Department of Business Administration, Lund University, Lund, Sweden), Åsa Thelander, (Department of Communication Studies, Lund University, Helsingborg, Sweden)
Citation:Ulf Johansson, Åsa Thelander, (2009) "A standardised approach to the world? IKEA in China", International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences, Vol. 1 Iss: 2, pp.199 - 219
Keywords:China, Marketing strategy, Retail management, Standardization
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/17566690910971454 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Abstract:

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to analyse the marketing strategy in China of the furnishing retailer IKEA in the context of standardisation and adaptation of marketing activities. IKEA's strategy in China is compared to its corporate strategy throughout the rest of the world.

Design/methodology/approach – The four P classifications are used as a framework to compare the central marketing strategies of IKEA with marketing strategies used in China. The paper builds on both primary and secondary data. Interviews with senior managers at IKEA are conducted and studies on business and retailing in China are used.

Findings – The marketing strategies used by IKEA in China are found to be different from the standardised strategies it uses throughout the rest of the world. Several of the changed strategies are central to the business concept of IKEA.

Research limitations/implications – The present paper shows the challenges for a standardised marketing concept and its implications.

Originality/value – The paper provides, in the context of the standardisation and adaptation of marketing activities, a more nuanced and up-to-date picture of the strategies used by IKEA compared to previous studies.



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