Wal-Mart tried to leave it’s base that had made it the retail juggernaut. It’s now paying for these decisions greatly and is now trying to turn itself around. The question is…can it regain those customers again?
Wal-Mart’s struggles are the result of a misstep: To jump-start lethargic growth and counter the rise of competitors such as cheap-chic rival Target Corp., executives veered away from the winning formula of late founder Sam Walton to provide “every day low prices” to the American working class. Wal-Mart, the world’s biggest retailer by sales, instead raised prices on some items while promoting deals on others.
Company executives acknowledge having miscalculated and are adjusting their strategy again. The big question is how quickly the mammoth chain can turn itself around.
Wal-Mart’s shift from its traditional core customer manifested itself in numerous ways. A foray into organic foods didn’t catch on with discount shoppers. A push to sell trendy fashions like skinny jeans bombed. And an attempt to cut clutter in stores to attract higher-income customers wound up undermining Wal-Mart’s appeal to its traditional audience.