Retail Dogma

Big Box Retailer

What is a Big Box Retailer?

A big box retailer is a retailer operating large format stores that occupy large physical spaces.

These retailers could be selling a general line of merchandise, with a wide variety of categories, such as General Stores, or they could be specialty retailers who sell specific lines of merchandise.

Big Box Retailer Examples

Walmart is an example of a big box hypermarket that sells a wide variety of merchandise lines.

The chain has a sprawling network of retail stores, that occupy a large physical space to showcase the wide product assortment they carry. These products are segmented into departments and categories, to make it easier for customers to shop and find what they need.

As a mass market retailer, Walmart follows an Everyday Low Price strategy, to attract, and sell to, as many customers as possible.

Another example is Home Depot, which sells specific lines of merchandise, and so is considered to be a specialty store.

Home Depot stores are also large-format and are categorized into departments and categories. The retailer aims to carry all the relevant products related to the specialty they specialize in, which is home improvement.

Other Examples of Big box retailers include IKEA, Target, Costco, Best Buy and Kohl’s.

Big Box Vs. Small Box Retail

Big box retail stores have a more complex operation than small box retailers.

Not only due to the higher foot traffic, sales volume, and the huge product assortment they need to handle, but also because of the large number of employees and the complex hierarchy of the store team.

Big Box store team structure example from Walmart

The store team at these stores is divided into smaller teams, often by department, with each of those teams having a leader they report to, e.g the department manager.

Then another higher level of management is managing those team leaders, and this level then reports to the store manager or store leader.

Store Management Course

So being a store manager of a big box store is a totally different experience from managing a small retail store. It requires a high level of leadership and people management skills, to be able to manage and develop other managers, and deal with the complexity of managing large teams, and the conflicts that arise from having such a high number of people in one place.

That’s why the big box store manager is one of the highest paying retail jobs.

Retail Management Courses

More Resources

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