This essay examines the strategies adopted by Panera in growing its market share from a small firm to the current status it enjoys. Several strategies were implemented at Panera as outlined below:
- The best strategy implemented by Panera was through its product offering. The company offers high quality meals that are produced on order. Its product differentiation separates it from other fast food restaurants which offer low grade burgers and fries. Its restaurants offer fresh bread, soups and salads which resonate easily with the customers’ dietary needs (York 25).
- Panera owns several restaurants that are located in different strategic locations. Its restaurants’ location is an important strategy that ensures customers have easy access to these restaurants.
- Franchising was vital in the growth of Panera in the USA; this is because the franchised stores helped in selling the Panera brand. Moreover, the company focused on increasing transactions per store/restaurant. The company’s main focus was getting more money per customer instead of getting more customers.
- Panera invested a lot in offering in quality products and thus it changing itself as a high-end brand. The company’s products are pricey since the company believes in offering quality products at premium cost (Horovitz 1).
- Panera core strategy lies with its customers in relation to serving the customers’ needs. Panera offers fast service and high quality food which contributed to its high customer growth numbers.
Evaluation & Control
- Panera made use of different marketing strategies to promote the restaurants’ growth. The strategies developed include advertising which was used in popularizing the restaurants. Panera focuses its marketing energies in meeting the customer’s needs with customer focused marketing tools (York 27).
- Panera also leveraged its evaluation and control on management information systems in the management of its restaurants. The management information system is used in management of all activities of the company. In addition to using MIS systems, the restaurant offered free Wi-Fi and different technologies in management of the restaurant chain (Wheelen 864).
- Panera leverages its operations and control on its human resources in the development of the company. Panera employee’s skilled workforce with different skills such as management, culinary, marketing and service. This workforce is responsible for the growth and sustainment of the Panera brand. For instance, in maintaining its competitive edge, during the economic crisis, the company did not downsize its workforce. This in the end paid off when the company registered good growth. A good workforce ensures timely delivery to Panera’s customers (Wheelen 862).
- Panera is a big company with a lot of financial resources which have been utilized in growing the company. The cash resources have been used in growing its operations in opening restaurants in all locations of the United States.
- The bakery supply chain used by Panera has been a main growth factor in maintaining its market leadership position. The supply chain is responsible for supply of fresh dough to all of Panera’s restaurants and stores. As a result, a consistent supply of fresh baked products is ensured (Wheelen 860).
- All the above factors have been combined to ensure that Panera grows faster within different locations in the United States. The combination of the above factors leverages Panera and gives it a competitive edge over most of its competitors. Maintaining its strategy using the above factors has ensured Panera grows in leaps and bound to its current position.
Horovitz, Bruce. “Panera Bakes a Recipe for Success.” USA Today 23 Jul. 2009: 1. Print.
Wheelen, Thomas and Hunger David. Strategic Management and Business Policy: Toward global sustainability. Boston: MA, Pearson, 2012. Print.
York, Emily. “Panera: An America’s Hottest Brands Case Study.” Advertising Age 16 Nov. 2009: 24-28. Print.