Marketing mix of McDonald’s – McDonald’s marketing mix

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Marketing mix of McDonald’s – McDonald’s marketing mix

This is a detailed analysis of the marketing mix of McDonald’s. It explores the 7Ps (Product, Price, Place, Promotion, Process, People, and Physical Environment) of McDonald’s and explains its business & marketing strategies. McDonald’s, a fast food restaurant, was founded in USA in 1940. It opened its first restaurant in the UK in 1974.

There are over 14,000 McDonald’s restaurants in the USA and 1,270 across the UK and Northern Ireland. McDonald’s is renowned for being the pioneer of the Drive Thru restaurant concept and is the UK and world leader in this sector. As a franchising organisation, around 70% of McDonald’s restaurants in the UK are owned and operated by local businessmen and women. The company invests £43 million on employee training and development every year in the UK (McDonald’s, 2020).

Marketing mix of McDonald’s – McDonald’s marketing mix

Products of McDonald’s

McDonald’s is one of the world’s leading fast food restaurants. It primarily sells breakfast, burgers, fries, chicken & sandwiches, snacks & sides, desserts & shakes, salads, and drinks. It provides customers with a variety of options. For example, Egg McMuffin, Egg White Delight McMuffin, Hotcakes, Hash Browns, Quarter Pounder with Cheese, Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese, Hamburger, Cheeseburger, Double Cheeseburger, Vanilla Shake, Vanilla Cone, Hot Fudge Sundae, Kiddie Cone, Hot Caramel Sundae, Strawberry Sundae, Baked Apple Pie, McCafé Chocolate Shake, McCafé, and McCafé Frappé Mocha are some of the products offered by McDonald’s.

Prices and pricing strategies of McDonald’s

Companies use a wide range of pricing techniques to sell their products. Value pricing, going rate, cost plus pricing, price discrimination, and loss leader are some of the popular pricing techniques. The overall aim for each individual McDonald’s restaurant is to provide food at a competitive value driven price for the customers. Prices vary slightly between different McDonald’s restaurants according to a number of factors. The restaurant set prices with a demand-based methodology and does not prescribe pricing to franchisees who can set their own price structure as they see fit in their local market (McDonald’s, 2020). However, franchisees need to offer a competitive value driven price for their customers.

Place/Distribution channels of McDonald’s

Place refers to distribution. Distribution strategies are the ways in which a company gets its products to its customers. McDonald’s have different distributions strategies in different countries. The restaurant offers home delivery in some countries; however, this service is not available in many countries. For instance, McDelivery is now available in many cities in the UK. This has been made possible as the restaurant signed a home delivery contract with UberEats in 2017 (Rodionova, 2017). A similar contract with UberEats has made home delivery possible in thousands of locations in the USA as well.

Many of the McDonald’s restaurants are open 24 hour a day. This is an example of intensive distribution which means making products available for sale through all possible channels of distribution. This helps the restaurant increase its sales and eventually the total revenues.

Promotion strategies of McDonald’s

McDonald’s advertisements are the most notable among its promotion tactics. The restaurant uses television, newspapers, magazines, the Internet and other media outlets to communicate with its customers. The company uses ‘sales promotion – techniques of sales promotion’ as well. For example, if customers buy six cups of tea/coffee and collect six stickers, they become eligible to have a cup of tea/coffee free. The restaurant also offers discount coupons and freebies for certain products.

Processes in McDonald’s

Process refers to a set of activities performed in order to achieve something. McDonald’s undertakes a number of activities to deliver its products to customers. For example, food preparation is an important activity in the overall process. The food preparation at McDonald’s is completely transparent i.e. the whole process is visible to the customers. Other aspects of the process include but not limited to how customers place their orders, how long they wait for their food, and how they are treated by the customer care assistants.

People of McDonald’s

McDonalds is one of the biggest employers both in the USA and the UK. Approximately 120,000 people work in McDonald’s in the UK and Northern Ireland. 70% of McDonald’s restaurants in the UK are owned and operated by local businessmen and women. The restaurant invests £43 million on employee training and development every year in the UK. The main objective in the discussion of People aspect of the marketing mix is to address issues concerning both customers and employees. If employees are not happy, they are more likely to deliver poor customer service. This may frustrate customers who may never come back again. It is therefore very important for any company to devise appropriate strategies to address the needs and wants of both employees and customers.

Physical evidence of McDonald’s

The last element of the marketing mix of McDonald’s is physical evidence which refers to the elements of the physical environment visitors and customers experience. The physical evidence impacts not only on the impressions of the customers of the restaurant, but also the way McDonald’s functions. McDonald’s interiors are attractive and the restaurant maintains clean and hygienic interiors of its outlets.

Hope the article ‘Marketing mix of McDonald’s – McDonald’s marketing mix’ has been a useful reading. You may also like SWOT analysis of McDonald’s and Stakeholders of McDonald’s. Other relevant articles for you are:

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Marketing mix of Burger King

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Last update: 05 January 2020

Further reading/references

Lancaster, G. & Reynolds, P. (2004) Marketing, 1st Edition, Palgrave Macmillan

McDonald’s (2020) About McDonald’s, available at (accessed 05 January 2020)

Rodionova, Z. (2017) BIG MAC AND DRIVES McDonald’s rolls out its delivery service nationwide with UberEats, available at: (accessed 05 January 2020)

Photo credit: Pixabay

Author: M Rahman

M Rahman writes extensively online with an emphasis on business management, marketing, and tourism. He is a lecturer in Management and Marketing. He holds an MSc in Tourism & Hospitality from the University of Sunderland. Also, graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University with a BA in Business & Management Studies and completed a DTLLS (Diploma in Teaching in the Life-Long Learning Sector) from London South Bank University.