Marketing mix of Sports Direct (4Ps of Sports Direct)
This is a detailed examination of the marketing mix of Sports Direct (4Ps of Sports Direct). It aims to examine the retailer’s strategies concerning its products, prices, place, and promotions. Sports Direct’s parent company is Frasers Group which is owned by billionaire Mike Ashley.
Product strategies of Sports Direct
Sports Direct is a leading sports retailer in the United Kingdom. In addition to selling its own products, it also sells products of many external brands such as Nike, Adidas, Reebok, and Puma.
The product portfolio of Sports Direct consists of apparel and accessories for men, women and children. Trousers, tracksuits, leggings, fleeces, dresses, shirts, sweatshirts, jeans, joggers, shoes, rucksacks, backpacks, belts, sports bras, school clothing etc. are some of its popular products (Sports Direct, 2022).
However, it should be mentioned that many customers often question about the quality of Sports Direct’s products. In fact, the retailer was voted ‘the worst sports shop in Britain’ in a Which? survey. The major factors considered in the survey were product range and quality, customer service, in-store and online experience, value for money, after sales service, and stores’ response to lockdowns (BBC, 2021).
Pricing strategies of Sports Direct
Sports Direct uses a competitive pricing strategy due to the high competition in the market. It generally pursues a low pricing strategy. Low pricing attracts more customers who want value for money when purchasing products. It also sells products in bundles, thereby the customers pay a lower price for a bundle of items rather than the total individual prices for those products.
Place/Distribution channels of Sports Direct
Place plays a very important role in the marketing mix of Sports Direct (4Ps of Sports Direct). In addition to the retail outlets, Sports Direct also sells via the Sports Direct website (www.sportsdirect.com). The products purchased via the website are delivered directly to the customers.
Sports Direct currently operates around 950 stores worldwide with 600 in the UK (Retail Week, 2022). It is looking for a lot of stores including vacant department stores as part of its expansion plan. However, many analysts question the suitability of this expansion and distribution strategy particularly at a time when consumer behavior has changed significantly due to global lockdowns and online shopping.
Promotion strategies of Sports Direct
Sports Direct advertises on television, and radio. It also uses social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to promote its products. Its “Go All Out” Christmas 2021 campaign featured many sports icons including Jack Grealish and Emma Raducanu in order to inspire consumers to be active. However, it is worth mentioning that some of its ads were considered misleading and banned by Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) in the UK.
Sports Direct offers vouchers and discount codes during festive periods to attract customers to purchase its products. Its website also carries out flash sales periodically. Discount up to 50% is often offered (Sports Direct, 2022).
Sports Direct takes part in different trade exhibitions throughout the year which in turn helps it reach a wider range of customers. Gift cards can also be purchased by customers, which is another method of promoting the company’s products.
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Last update: 14 January 2022
BBC (2021) Sports Direct rated lowest in customer satisfaction survey, available at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-56940993 (accessed 13 January 2022)
Retail Week (2022) Sports Direct, available at: https://www.retail-week.com/companies/sports-direct?authent=1 (accessed 12 January 2022)
Sports Direct (2022) Sale, available at: https://www.sportsdirect.com/ (accessed 11 January 2022)
Author: Fahim Shah
Fahim Shah has been working in the UK as a visiting lecturer in Business and Tourism for the last 10 years. After completing a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Marketing, he went on to gain an MBA from the University of Bradford, the UK. He is a Fellow of Advance HE (FHEA) and a full member of the Association of Business Executives (ABE).