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Coles and Woolworths Ethical Issues in Marketing

University: Monash University

  • Unit No: 7
  • Level: Undergraduate/College
  • Pages: 5 / Words 1243
  • Paper Type: Case Study
  • Course Code:
  • Downloads: 1710
Question :
  • Ethical issues faced by Woolworths?
  • Woolworth is focusing on various promotional tools with the use of digital technology(online media) and is facing difficulties. Describe the challenges face in digital marketing and its solution.
  • Coles is facing problem in the management of internal resources and in the use of latest technology. Describes the challenges along with its solution.
  • Coles steps to carry the business operations in ethical manner?
Answer :
Organization Selected : Coles and Woolworths

Background of Woolworth & Coles

Woolworth limit and Coles supermarket belong to retail industry which is one of the most well-developed markets in the current business environment. Woolworth is established in Australia in the year 1924 and is dealing in a supermarket chain and provide grocery to people. Coles supermarket is providing groceries to people of Australia from the year 1914. Both the companies are dealing in the same market and are the competitors. With the effective implementation of various strategies, they are trying to capture a large area of the marketplace.

Woolworth case study

Marketing is the process through which a company is attempting to communicate with customers and try to make them aware of all the products and services offered by the company in the targeted market. It is very important that company should take care of the fact that marketing techniques should be ethical. The focus is on the ethical issues in marketing strategies of Woolworth company. Due to intense competition in supermarket industry, company is always been the keen supporter of promotional tools. They are always attempting to innovate their promotional tools so that they are in continuous contact with their targeted customers. As visualised in different surveys, company is carrying out extensive promotional techniques through online media. Following graphs is showing the growth that departmental stores have while marketing on online media. This is the sector which is having the main source of income in online media.

Online Sales Growth Rate
(Illustration 1: Online sales growth rate in Australia, 2021)

The challenges-

As described inn above case study, company is using online marketing tool extensively and this is posing some serious challenges to the company. These issues comes mainly under the category of ethical issues. One of the main issues is that the online media marketing targets only one specific group of targeted audience and this makes a demarcation line between the whole society. This challenge also paints a bad image on face of company that is only existing in the market for a specific section of society. Following diagram showcases the problems that are existing in the area of marketing. Majorly, every problem relates to online channel.

(Illustration 2: Challenges in online marketing, 2020)

The solution-

To solve the above-described challenge, it is important that company is focusing on incorporating such ways those will be including both offline and online marketing channels. Through this combination method, company will be able to target and communicate with both those in access of internet and those who are living in remote area as well. This will also improve the image of company in target market and will be boosting the sales revenue as well. Furthermore, this will improve the brand awareness in the market and will also focus on increasing the credibility of company in market. If the company is using both the channels, than it will improve the communication strategy of company with its customers and hence, will also gain their trust, this trust value will improve the competitive edge of company in market.

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Coles supermarket case study

Coles group is dealing in grocery products and it has employed more than 110,000 staff members. They have established their brand name in marketplace and is operating in more than 2400 location in Australia. The level of competition is high in retail sector hence the percentage market share changes frequently. The customers of Coles are more technology friendly hence it is beneficial for company as there operation cost is reducing and more focus is on customer satisfaction. These are the main aspects which is helping company to grow its turnover and profitability. Due to vast size the company is facing difficulty in delivering high quality supply chain systems and need to control its cost and expenses. Moreover due to large distance the communication problem is taking place which is effecting the operations and activities of Coles.

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The challenges-

Coles need to focus on improving its server and the technology with the motive to increase its productivity. Its current server and the storage infrastructure solution is the end so they have to take corrective measures. The system which is been used by the company to manage its sales system need to be improved in order to meet the demand of customers. This challenge could be meet by focusing on building effective strategies.

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The solution-

Coles has adopted Fujitsu for supplying and installing system with the motive to focus on rapid response and for on-site maintenance of services. Furthermore it is using virtualisation for building high available host servers so that effective retail service can be delivered without any interruption. The company is focusing on sustainable development by developing its own products and carrying work in ethical manner. The suppliers must work according to the policies and requirements of company which focuses on animal welfare, heath, nutrition, packaging, etc. Coles is working hard to provide great taste to its potential customers by using fresh and quality products. Coles is doing its work in ethical manner by following the guideline of health provided by government and providing nutritious and healthy food products to its potential customers.

Coles Ethical Practices
(Illustration 3: Coles Ethical Practices 2019)


Woolworth and Coles both are belonging to retail sector and providing quality products and services to its customers. It has been analysis that both the companies are covering major share in the Australia market. Woolworth is facing various ethical issues in carrying the business operations in effective manner such as misleading activities carried by employees, not proving quality products to its potential customers, etc. In order to solve and improve its ethical issues the company has taken various corrective measures and actions. Coles believe in earning the trust of its customers by meeting their needs and desires. Coles is working with its supply chain and other departments with the motive to carry all the business operations in ethical manner. It has been analysed that Woolworth is performing well in comparison to Cola and covering large areas of marketplace. Woolworth is able to achieve this position in marketplace as it working effectively with its staff members and able to meet the needs and desires of customers.

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