Business Level Strategies

What Is Business Level Strategy? The Best Guide For 2022

Khyati Hooda
By Khyati Hooda 13 Min Read

Business level strategy relates to a collection of moves and actions to provide value to customers and build a competitive advantage in the individual product or service market by leveraging the firm’s core competencies. 

Your company’s strategy will influence your place in the market and the direction of your profits. It will also impact how efficiently you can serve your clientele.

Definition of a Business Level Strategy

Business level strategy relates to a collection of moves and actions to provide value to customers and build a competitive advantage in the individual product or service market by leveraging the firm’s core competencies. It establishes the company’s market position in comparison to its competitors.

Business Level Strategies are primarily concerned with businesses with numerous divisions, each of which is referred to as a Strategic Business Unit (SBU).

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Within each Line of Business, i.e., SBU, determines how the company will compete in the market. It also focuses on how the company will compete successfully in each line of business and how to manage a specific unit’s interest and operations properly.

These strategies are the measures performed by a corporation for each line of business or SBU to get a competitive advantage in the many business areas.

Business level strategies address the following challenges:

  • Customers’ requirements are being met.
  • Getting a leg up on the competition.
  • You are keeping yourself from falling behind in the market.
  • Strategies are focused on meeting competition, defending market share, and earning a profit.
  • When a company outperforms its competitors in attracting target customers and surviving competitive forces, it is considered to have a competitive edge.

Hence, these are the 5 challenges that are overcome by business level strategies.

Different Business Level Strategy 

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Putting oneself in your customer’s shoes is one method to develop perspective. For example, which companies do you buy from when you go shopping for clothes? Examine how this viewpoint corresponds with your marketing initiative and business resources by comparing it to your target clients. 

For example, which companies do you buy from when shopping for clothes? How important do you think cost, material and manufacturing quality, environmental implications, brand identity, and other factors are?

After that, you’ll be able to determine which of the following business level strategy examples is the most effective.

1. Leadership in terms of cost

The first business-level strategy is leadership. If there’s one thing that all firms have in common, it’s that they’re all in pricing competition. They want to focus on a broad spectrum of potential clients and maintain a profit margin on above-average returns. In essence, the Cost Leadership Strategy tries to position your company as a market leader in pricing.

There are a couple of things you can do to do this:

  • Reduce your operational costs to increase your earnings.
  • Only charge pricing that is in line with the rest of the industry.
  • Price yourself lower than your competitors.

Of course, whether you charge average or lower rates for your items, you must do so while lowering operational costs to keep your profit margins positive. You’ll also need a lot of money to invest in things like efficient logistics, supplies, personnel, and the correct technology.

2. Differentiation

Being unique is the second most important of all company plan examples.

This is critical to a company’s ability to position itself as an industry leader in its market. This strategy likewise prioritizes quality over cost. Designer goods and reputable customer service, for example. 

This might even include designer goods at reasonable pricing, which would be a cost-cutting strategy. Differentiation also applies to individuals with a smaller market, such as those who only buy organic produce despite the higher prices.

As a competing firm, your goal is to differentiate your products and services by adding value to them. Implementing your differentiation strategy implies attracting your target customers to your products and services in such a way that they stand out.

You’ve earned your target clients’ trust and willingness to pay a premium price when you successfully apply your differentiation approach. This has a significant impact on your ability to absorb increasing operational expenditures and future investments in your business.

3. Low-Cost Differentiation Integrated

The next business-level strategy is an Integrated Low-Cost Differentiation strategy that allows businesses to swiftly adopt new technologies and capabilities while adapting to external developments. 

At first glance, this integrated approach appears to be similar to the first two company-level strategy examples stated above. Still, it is a more in-depth response to expanding globalization.

This strategy entails using core capabilities, numerous business networks, flexible production systems, and Total Quality Management (TQM)—all in the name of creating and maintaining high-quality goods while lowering operational costs.

4. Differentiation with a Purpose

A smaller target consumer base is implied by focused differentiation. The benefit of this plan is that the company will serve its clients more efficiently. This technique is also known as a “one-of-a-kind” or “niche-focused” strategy.

The capacity to provide more unique and favorable features to the specific customer base in issue is the competitiveness with the Focused Differentiation strategy. The following are the main components of this strategy:

  • The choice of a profitable market niche
  • concentrating on the areas where the competition is lacking
  • an emphasis on the sites where product substitution is the most challenging

The Rolls Royce is a fantastic illustration of this. With their concentration on status, quality, and engineering prowess, these cars have lasted the test of time. Although they are only a tiny part of the global auto market, their premium value and demand remain stable.

5. Low-Cost Focused

The next business-level strategy is the Focused Low-Cost Strategy, like the Focused Differentiation Strategy, which tries to corner a limited market niche. This method works best when a company can’t afford to offer many products and services cheaply and can’t focus on a more generalized cost leadership strategy.

So, what do they do?

They concentrate on a single specialty or distinct characteristic and strive to provide that niche or feature at the lowest possible cost to their target market segment. Of course, if there’s a lot of rivalry in this market, you’ll need to make sure you can keep your prices down while offering a lot of products.

This technique necessitates excellent marketing to your intended consumer group and the ability to manufacture in large quantities.

How to put a Business level strategy in Place 

The implementation of a business-level plan necessitates extensive research and consists of several components, including:

1. Identify and comprehend your target market.

First and foremost, a company must select a target market and comprehend its characteristics. Is the company to focus on a specialized niche or the general public? What is the mechanism of the market? Is there enough room for expansion? What kinds of clients does the company have to deal with?

2. Know what your customers want

Following the selection of a target market, the organization must better understand the demands of its target audience. The company’s think tank must address a few issues, such as what our customers require? Do they value quantity above quality? Are they willing to try new things? Are they willing to pay for new ideas?

3. Brainstorm How to Meet Their Demands 

After you’ve decided who you’ll serve and what you’ll serve, you’ll need to figure out how you’ll do it. In this step, you’ll need to make judgments on your vendors, distributors, suppliers, logistics, and so on.

4. Compile a list of your competitors

Analyzing your competitors is something you must not overlook. What exactly are they up to? What are their methods? What strategy do they employ? What flaws do they have? What are the holes in the industry that you can fill? Where can you create your competitive advantage?

5. Assign tasks to the department in question

Any company can only succeed if its departments work together effectively. Senior management must bring together several departments and offer them projects with deadlines. Yes, setting individual goals for each department is vital, but it is also critical that all organizational departments work together.

6. Regularly review the outcomes.

Without regular evaluation, every business-level plan would be incomplete. A company must ensure that management, staff, and departments carry out their responsibilities. If something isn’t operating as it should, look for the flaws and fix them.

Business-Level Strategy Examples

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1. Amazon

Amazon is an excellent example of a cost-cutting method. This worldwide behemoth has obliterated any rival or roadblock in its path. Here’s how to do it:

Because Amazon does not have any physical storefronts, it realized economies of scale. They sell online and have warehouses. Advanced networking and computing technology help the organization enhance its operating efficiency.

Most of Amazon’s operations, such as purchasing and scheduling, have been automated.

2. Apple

Apple Inc. is a perfect example of product differentiation. It is a global industry leader and a member of the “Big Five” (tech companies). With devices like the iPad, iPod, Macintosh line PCs, and the iconic iPhone, Apple has achieved unprecedented renown and respect in the electronics world. The company set itself apart due of;

  • Its product designs are one-of-a-kind, elegant, and straightforward.
  • Product features that are amazing and incredibly beneficial.
  • Apple has a different pricing approach; the corporation offers its products at a premium price because it gives unrivaled value.

3. Happy Socks 

Happy Socks, a Swedish-based eCommerce company, has expanded its services to 90 countries. By including distinctive elements in their products, the corporation pursues a differentiation strategy (product differentiation). Every piece of apparel they release becomes a fashion trend. Aside from that, their excellent packaging is a unique selling point.

4. IKEA

IKEA is a fantastic illustration of this business technique in terms of a combined low-cost/differentiation strategy. The corporation invests a lot of money in automation, logistics, and design. IKEA has products that you won’t find anywhere else at such a low price.

Conclusion

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How you compete in your market will be determined by your Business Level Strategy. It is entirely dependent on your core skills, your market niche, and the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors to determine which strategy would work best for your company. 

According to Michael Porter, the founder of Business Level Strategy, the things you need to do to make each sort of strategy succeed appeal to different kinds of people. As a result, think carefully about your process.

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Posted by Khyati Hooda
Khyati is an entrepreneur, marketing consultant and growth hacker. She helps sustainable revenue growth through marketing for SaaS and subscription companies. Her expertise lies in building scalable customer acquisition strategies and implementing effective digital marketing campaigns that drive high-quality, low-cost leads for startups. Khyati has managed over $50M in marketing budgets across various industries including technology, finance, education, retail, consumer goods and more - successfully delivering over 15x ROI for her clients.
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