Advanced Diploma in Retail Business
Marketing in Retail Business
Guided Learning Hours: 60 (GLH all for teaching and learning activities)
What will you learn from this unit?
Wherever a retail business is located, in a shopping centre, a rural location or operated from a
home, the most enterprising businesses will find innovative ways of using marketing to expand
their market share. This unit enables you to develop your knowledge of the importance of
marketing in retail business and the best ways of marketing retail businesses that are from different
sectors and use different retail channels. Through this, you will learn about the relationship
between marketing strategy and the overall business process. You will also be able to develop
your understanding of the various factors that influence approaches to marketing. If the
development of marketing strategies is not challenging enough already, then add change to the
mix! You will also need to explore how ethical considerations can affect marketing strategy
You will apply your knowledge by using marketing information to make marketing decisions. You
will also review a marketing strategy in the light of changes to the retail environment.
You will need to develop your personal, learning and thinking skills as a creative thinker and
independent enquirer. You will also need to develop your functional skills in ICT and English.
How will you be assessed?
This unit is externally assessed which means that you will undertake an assessment devised and
marked by the awarding body EDI.
The external assessment involves a written examination lasting 1.5 hours. You will be presented
with a scenario for which you will need to develop a marketing strategy that you will then need to
adapt in the light of changing circumstances.
Learners will: 1. Understand the importance of marketing in retail business
Assessment Criteria Taught Content
Learners can: Learners must develop understanding of the impact of marketing strategy
on retail business and how this can be used to deliver competitive
1.1 Explain the impact of advantage for a retail business. In order to build a marketing strategy,
learners need to understand the meaning of marketing in retail business and
the different stages that are involved: carrying out market research to find
on retail business out what customers want, and what they are prepared to pay for it; analysing
1.2 Analyse links the findings; developing a product range; selecting the right retail channels
between marketing to get the products to market; providing good customer service to ensure
strategy and the customers’ needs are fully met.
process Learners must develop understanding of the consequences of different
marketing strategies to different types of retail business. Different types of
retail business include different sub-sectors and businesses of different
sizes. The different sub-sectors are DIY; food and grocery; personal care;
automotive; music and video; electrical goods; home wares; clothing and
footwear. The different sizes are local, national and global. Learners need to
understand how the marketing strategy (marketing mix) underpins the
strategy and how its components are applied in different types of retail
business. The marketing mix components are product, price, place,
promotion, physical evidence, people and process, also known as the 7 Ps.
Learners need to know about branding of products and what contribution
branding can make to marketing strategies. They also need to consider the
risks that would impact on the strategy and how likely these are to occur and
what impact they would have.
Learners need to understand pricing strategies and their rationales in
terms of their possible impacts, including penetration pricing, price skimming,
prestige pricing, competitive pricing, demand led pricing. Learners can
demonstrate their understanding of pricing strategies through numerical
skills by calculating effects of price increases, price promotions, price
Learners must develop understanding of the links between marketing
strategy and the overall business process, including how a business’s
marketing strategy forms a platform for the success of a business and a
framework for all the stages and functional areas.
Stages: sourcing products, buying and merchandising, storage, selling to
the customer, disposal and recycling.
Functional areas: marketing, sales, finance, operations, customer service,
Learners need to consider the links both in terms of day to day business
operation and short and medium term business planning.
Learners will: 2. Understand the factors that influence approaches to marketing
Assessment Criteria Taught Content
Learners can: Learners must develop understanding of the external influences on
marketing, including how these influences are essential to the
2.1 Evaluate external success or failure of a retail marketing strategy. Learners need to
influences on consider the differing relative importance of different factors to
marketing (IE4) different types of retail business and that change can be both
2.2 Analyse the ethical expected and unexpected. External influences covering the following
considerations in areas need to be represented in terms of both opportunities and
product development threats presented:
and promotion Political: local, national and international; political instability
2.3 Explain the impact of Economic: stage of the business cycle; dependency on international
internal and external economies; exchange rate fluctuation; interest rates and fiscal policy;
influences on competition
marketing strategy Social: changing tastes and fashions; corporate social responsibility,
2.4 Explain the influence cultural considerations
of business Technological: change to internal operations; change to retail
performance on channels; security factors
marketing strategy Legal: legislation relating to consumer protection; data protection;
Environmental: local, national and global responsibility.
Learners must develop understanding of the ethical considerations
in product development and promotion. This requirement builds
on the evaluation above and considers the concept of global
corporate social responsibility in the context of global economy.
Considerations include fair trade; sustainability; social enterprise; well
being of employees; supporting local, national and global
communities; the reasons for businesses having sound policies in
terms of corporate social responsibility.
Learners must develop understanding of the impact of internal and
external factors on marketing strategy and the influence of
business performance. This requirement introduces the internal
factors of profitability, staff resource, space utilisation, stock
management systems, financial resources, business location and
medium and long term aims and objectives, alongside external
factors. In addition, learners need to understand the development of
marketing strategy as a dynamic process that is reliant on the level
of business performance in terms of aims, objectives and key
performance indicators relating to profitability, productivity and
competitiveness. Adaptation of marketing strategy to enable aims
and objectives to be met and competitive advantage must be
Learners will: 3. Be able to use marketing information to shape marketing decisions
Assessment Criteria Taught Content
Learners can: Learners need to develop skills in using retail market intelligence,
building on their knowledge of fundamental market research
3.1 Use retail market principles, and how technology can be applied. They must
intelligence understand that retail market intelligence needs to be fit for purpose.
3.2 Review retail Learners need to think carefully about the ethics of research when
marketing strategy in questioning potential customers and understand how market research
changing can be corrupted by using inappropriate questions or questioning
circumstances (CT6) techniques.
Learners need to learn how to use qualitative results including those
based on people’s opinions, views or thoughts and quantitative
information, including original numerical results, statistics, tables and
graphs. This information is collected from primary and secondary
sources. Primary sources include original, uninterpreted information,
usually directly from people. Secondary sources include desk-based
sources, usually a publication of some form. Learners need to
understand the role and importance of each. Learners need to
develop their numerical skills for analysing market research results,
which may be in the form of raw statistics, tables, graphs or charts.
They need to learn how to apply this information to decisions relating
to all stages of the marketing strategy, as defined in learning outcome
1. (FS-Maths and ICT)
Learners need to develop skills to review marketing strategy in
changing circumstances. Changing circumstances include the
alteration of internal and external factors, including business
performance as defined in learning outcome 2.
To enable this review, learners need to develop the skills to apply key
marketing models to situations presented:
Situational analysis: including what sector the business is in, what
the product(s) and their target market(s) are, what retail channels are
being used, who the business’s competitors are, what resources are
available and what external trends may impact on the situation.
SWOT analysis: the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats
at one point in time
Product life cycle in terms of different possible future change
Boston and Ansoff Matrix in terms of risk and expected returns.
Personal, Learning and Thinking Skills (PLTS)
EDI has embedded Personal, Learning and Thinking Skills in specific assessment criteria within
this unit. This is to ensure learners have plenty of opportunities for these skills to be assessed.
Learners must be encouraged to plan and review their own personal achievement and
development. The PLTS that are included within the assessment criteria are naturally occurring,
and therefore development will be natural in the assessment of the unit.
Naturally occurring PLTS in this unit
The following PLTS are assessed as part of the requirements of individual learning outcomes and
Creative Thinkers (6)
CT6 requires learners to “adapt ideas as circumstances change” and in this unit they are required
to review marketing strategy in changing circumstances. Often in the retail industry, circumstances
change in ways that are unexpected or outside one’s control. For example, reviewing strategy in
the wake of the credit crisis requires a large degree of creative thinking. Teachers must impress on
learners the need for new and different ideas, while thinking through the consequences carefully.
Independent Enquirers (4)
IE4 requires learners to “analyse and evaluate information, judging its relevance and value”. In this
unit learners will have to carefully consider the relative impacts of different factors on a retail
environment. It is important that prior to this assessment teachers develop learners’ skills in
weighing up relative values in different situations.
Developing additional PLTS
In addition, in this unit there are significant opportunities to develop learners’ creative thinking
skills. EDI suggests that the following PLTS are developed as part of the applied delivery of this
Creative Thinkers (1) (2) (3) (4) (5)
CT1 requires learners to ‘generate ideas and explore possibilities’. In developing marketing
strategy learners will be required to generate different ideas as the challenges that they face will be
significant. Exploring possibilities will be central to their determination of the most suitable course
of action to fulfil the largest number of requirements possible.
CT2 requires learners to ‘ask questions to extend their thinking’. Development of this skill will be
vital when learners are encouraged to look critically at evidence and information that is presented
to them for use.
CT3 requires learners to ‘connect their own and others’ ideas and experiences in inventive ways’.
During the course of this unit learners will develop understanding of the marketing approaches
used by real retail businesses. This will lead to learners having a wide range of real approaches to
apply alongside their own ideas.
CT4 requires learners to ‘question their own and others’ assumptions’. People often have pre-
conceived ideas about what effective marketing entails due to their own perspective and taste. As
part of this unit, learners must be encouraged to think more widely and question the assumptions
that they have.
CT5 requires learners to ‘try out alternatives or new solutions and follow ideas through’. This will
be an extension of CT1, where once learners have explored the possibilities they will need to
select possibly suitable courses of action to determine the consequences of each.
Learners at this level must achieve ‘mastery’ in the functional skills of English, ICT and Maths at
Level 2. ‘Mastery’ means that the learners are able to apply their skills in English, ICT and Maths
at that level, in any situation related to living and working. It is suggested that in the delivery of this
unit teachers concentrate on English and ICT functional skills.
Each functional skill has a separate, externally set and marked summative assessment. However,
if learners are to acquire ‘mastery’ of the functional skills, it is preferable for them to be provided
with integrated learning opportunities in which to demonstrate application of all 3 functional skills.
In providing such opportunities, teachers will find it relatively easy to integrate English and some
sections of ICT into projects, but integrating the functional skill of Maths will require more thought.
However, prior to embarking on full projects, learners will need to practise demonstrating
competence in applying functional skills during simple classroom exercises.
The Functional Skills Standards can be downloaded from the QCA website via the following link:
Teachers should focus on the right hand column of the standards for the functional skills of Maths
and English to ensure that learners achieve full coverage of the standards, ie ‘mastery’, and to
ensure that they are prepared for the external summative assessment. With regard to ICT,
however, the middle and right hand columns need to be covered.
Please also refer to the EDI Guidance for Centres, which gives tables showing the full list of
learning outcomes for functional skills.
The functional skills identified as being addressed in the following activity are dependent upon the
scope of the project as presented by the learner.
The activity below is a sample activity which shows how functional skills can be developed through
the delivery of this unit. There is no requirement for learners to complete the activity highlighted
below and teachers may prefer to deliver the learning outcomes within this unit through other
delivery strategies. However, teachers should refer to the following example as a specification for
how functional skills can be addressed through delivery activities. Further information about how
the unit may be delivered can be found in the delivery strategies section of this unit specification.
You are working on plans to develop and run a retail business, which will be implemented in other
principal learning units. A business mentor has been appointed to support your work. You plan to
work with your business mentor by carrying out market research into your proposed business idea.
You will use this work and the data it generates to prepare a suitable marketing report,
Business mentors are an important element to support learning. You need to develop good
relationships with the employers who have shown their willingness to contribute to delivery by
supporting the Diploma Gateway process. This unit and its suggested Functional Skills activity
present ideal opportunities for working with retail industry specialists to support learners with their
Meet with your mentor and discuss your initial ideas for market research to support the
development of your business idea. Agree a schedule of meetings to review your market research
as it develops.
Before you conclude the meeting, agree with your mentor what key points you need to include for
the market research section of the business plan. Make suitable notes of the meeting outcomes
and email a copy to your mentor.
Use the internet to research similar types of business in your area. Analyse the information you
find and use this to prepare a short summary to include in your marketing report.
Prepare suitable market research documentation (eg a questionnaire, a structured interview) and
use this with 50 potential customers for your business idea.
Analyse your data and present it in a suitable format. Email copies of your work to your mentor as
attachments for comment.
Meet with your mentor and discuss your draft of the marketing report. Make suitable notes of the
meeting outcomes and email a copy to your mentor.
Prepare a final draft of your marketing report based on feedback from your mentor. Email your
mentor a copy.
Arrange a final meeting to discuss your work. Make suitable notes of the meeting outcomes and
email a copy to your mentor.
Functional Skills Level 2 coverage and range from this activity
English: Speaking and listening
1 2 3 4
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 2 3 4 5
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13
ICT: Use ICT systems
1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 2.1 3.1 3.2 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 5.1
ICT: Find and select information
1.1 1.2 2.1 2.2 2.3
ICT: Develop, present and communicate information
1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 2.1 2.2 3.1 3.2 4.1 4.2
This unit is externally assessed.
The level of control is high and the assessment task is written and marked by EDI. The task must
be completed by learners under examination conditions.
Guided Learning Hours
This is an externally assessed unit and as a result centres should use the whole GLH for teaching
and learning activities. Learners must have the opportunity to carry out facilitated individual and
group research to prepare for this paper.
This unit is externally assessed. The assessment will be based on one or more of the sub
sectors stated in the taught content section.
The external assessment involves a written examination. The written examination is one and a
half hours and includes two structured and one extended question. Learners will be expected to
apply the knowledge, understanding and skills that they have gained in the unit to a case scenario
contained in the paper. The task will be based around forming strategic business decisions in the
EDI has produced a sample external assessment for this unit. For further information about the
requirements, teachers should refer to the test specification associated with this unit. The test
specification contains information about total marks for assessment, mark weightings and
exemplifies EDI’s approach to sampling.
Marketing will be a new concept for learners. Teachers should introduce a range of basic, but
relevant marketing concepts, as a foundation to the unit (all of which are transferable to other
Teachers will need to ensure learners understand the two main market research methods: primary
research (for example using customer feedback, surveys, questionnaires, interviews and focus
groups) and secondary research (market analysis, information available from internal records and
statistics, the internet, libraries, research companies, trade and national press and publications, or
professional associations such as Skillsmart Retail Ltd, the Sector Skills Council for Retail). They
should also introduce learners to PESTLE analysis as an evaluative tool. Examples of research
and case study materials will be useful when explaining this aspect of marketing.
The unit provides many opportunities for learners to use their previously acquired knowledge and
understanding to produce relevant marketing materials. Despite the solid platform of understanding
that this unit is based on, it is a particularly practical unit, enabling learners to enjoy developing
some important new skills that will make them valued employees in the future.
The unit can also be used as work for the extended project, particularly if the project concerns
setting up a new retail business, where developing a suitable marketing strategy and using
marketing activities to assess customer needs are vital.
As with other related units, learners should be given many opportunities to listen to, ask questions
of and see in action, sales and marketing specialists from different retail businesses across
Examples of how the unit could be delivered include:
Group discussions, for example on the appropriateness of different approaches to
marketing or the effects of external factors
Examining examples of real or realistic marketing strategies for scrutiny by learners
Case studies – copious opportunities to illustrate specific marketing points, particularly
where strategies may be unsuccessful or damaging
Examples of marketing materials (which learners may gather for themselves), including
specific examples of different techniques and methods, such as point-of-sale materials.
These should reflect different approaches from different types of business in the industry
Video/DVD materials, illustrating the application of particular marketing techniques and their
effect on customers
Examples of job adverts or descriptions for retail marketing specialists
Visits to retail businesses in different sub-sectors to illustrate different approaches to
Presentations from retailers or marketing specialists on ethical considerations of product
Presentations by visiting speakers who are marketing specialists (these should include
small independent retail operators whose approach and budget may be very different from
large and/or multiple organisations)
Active learning techniques that will promote understanding for various learning styles include:
Reviewing a marketing strategy against marketing intelligence and proposing a solution to
deal with change.
Developing projects set by retailer(s) to develop and/or review marketing strategies
Carrying out primary and secondary market research using instruments they have designed
Discussions with retail business customers about how effective a marketing strategy has
been (care must be taken to agree any interventions with the organisation hosting the
Analysing market research data and evaluating the outcomes
Discussing different marketing strategies in peer groups to promote imaginative thinking
and challenge ideas
Working with a business mentor to develop a marketing strategy and/or a promotional and
Role plays with marketing specialists to explore the marketing strategy and/or the
promotional and sales campaign
The level of support required by a learner or the independence they can demonstrate will vary,
differentiating learners from the least and most able.
Experiencing the world of work is critically important for learners. It provides learners with
opportunities to demonstrate their knowledge of retail marketing and how this work to promote and
develop outlets within the retail industry. Learners also need opportunities to practise and develop
a range of marketing skills in different retail environments and use the marketing information they
have gathered to shape marketing decisions. These may be:
Real – a real, commercially operating retail business. It is likely that these are accessed for
work experience to practise and develop skills relating to retail marketing activities and to
observe examples of retail marketing concepts in action. They are also suitable
environments to undertake enterprise and problem solving activities. It may be feasible for
these to be used for formative and, with controls, summative assessment
Mock shop – an environment that simulates a real retail environment. This could be, for
example, a room adapted with facilities simulating a retail environment, using resources
provided by retailers and endorsed by an employer. The mock shop will provide
opportunities to explore marketing ideas. It is not commercially operational, but enables
learners to gather data and use this both to shape marketing decisions and to inform
decisions about business operations. Mock shops are ideal environments for formative and
summative assessment as well as for learning.
Virtual – there is now software available that presents virtual retail environments, such as
View Retail. Unlikely to be used for assessment, but they will however provide stimulating
learning opportunities and the chance to explore retail marketing ideas.
Centres and individual teachers need to develop good relationships with the retail employers who
have shown their willingness to contribute to delivery by supporting the Diploma Gateway process.
Retail industry mentors can also add valuable input and support individual learners.
These relationships are extremely important for this unit and employers from different retail sub-
sectors could be used to introduce the concept of marketing and a range of marketing ideas within
different retail outlets. Other opportunities for work related learning can be maximised by arranging
visits to a range of local retail outlets of different sizes and formats and in different sectors to reflect
a range of marketing applications. These visits will add significantly to realism and vocational
relevance. They could involve a tour of the outlet with a manager or supervisor who is able to
illustrate different aspects of marketing for different product lines and ranges in different retail sub-
sectors. Such visits could also provide useful insights into the importance of marketing in retail
businesses and the factors that influence approaches to marketing. Learners can also be provided
with targeted websites that can be used to explore different marketing ideas using different retail
channels. Learners also need exposure to different marketing strategies for outlets of different
sizes and locations. Although the primary focus of this unit is on marketing within retail outlets,
there are plenty of excellent opportunities for learners to explore their potential career
Employers can also support teachers and the development of materials by providing information
about the approaches to marketing they use, including examples of marketing materials and
processes and methods used to gather marketing information. Employers can also support
teachers with the development of case study materials, which are particularly useful to illustrate
examples of successful marketing activities, as well as those that were unsuccessful, which
learners may otherwise not experience. Employers can also contribute to classroom input where
this is appropriate, such as an explanation of how a particular marketing strategy was developed
Employers are also crucial to the assessment process, helping to build formative assessment
materials, commenting on their realism and relevance, or supporting development of the mock
shop as a practical opportunity to develop marketing ideas. Employers can also be invited to
presentations by learners about marketing concepts, asking pertinent questions.
Retail is an exciting and relevant industry to work in and learn about. It is important that learners
are stimulated and enthusiastic about the opportunities for employment and progression in a range
of retail sectors.
Recommended resources are aimed at teachers and may cover more than the content of this unit.
They may also be appropriate at other levels.
Brittain P and Cox R, 2004. Retailing: An Introduction. Financial Times Prentice Hall.
Falk, E, 2003. 1001 Ideas to Create Retail Excitement. Prentice Hall Press. ISBN 0735203431.
Granger M and Sterling T, 2003. Fashion Entrepreneurship. Fairchild Books. ISBN 1563672332.
McGoldrick P, 2002. Retail Marketing. McGraw-Hill Education. ISBN 0077092503.
Sullivan M, 2002. Retail Marketing. Thomson Learning. ISBN 1861526024.
Retail Week is the leading publication for the UK retail sector covering food, fashion, property,
stores and technology, with exclusive industry news, hard-hitting features and interviews, market
data and offers practical advice on issues affecting UK retail.
The Grocer – food and drink title
In Store Magazine – retail design and marketing including new store design, in-store promotions,
packaging breakthroughs, POP initiatives, e-commerce and digital technology.
Most major retail organisations maintain their own websites which will provide information to
support this unit. Others include:
http://www.skillsmartretail.com/ Sector Skills Council for retail
http://www.skillsforlogistics.org/ Sector Skills Council which works alongside companies
involved in moving, handling or storing goods
http://www.motor.org.uk/ Sector Skills Council for the automotive retail industry
http://www.skillfast-uk.org/ Sector Skills Council for fashion and textiles
http://www.retail-week.com/ the UK's leading provider of retail industry news, top retail
jobs and key retail market data, from across the entire
http://www.theretailbulletin.com/ online retail news resource for retailers with news on
retail, e-tail and multichannel retail
www.retailchoice.com/ jobs in retail marketing
www.retailmarketing.co.uk/ example of commercial retail marketing specialist
www.teneric.co.uk/retail-marketing-plan.html sample retail marketing plan to market
businesses effectively and improve retail business profits.
Web-based materials available to support this unit change regularly and teachers are encouraged
to explore what is available. Examples include:
http://www.teachers.tv/ programmes about retailing on TV and on-
http://www.viewretail.com/ VIEW is an ICT based application that
provides a young person with access to the
workplace. It is designed as an accessibility
tool and therefore needs the support of
good planning and teacher involvement in
the same way as any real visit to a
VIEW provides a means to:
Move around the workplace through a
network of 360 degree panoramic
Examine evidence such as images,
image series, documents, audio
interviews and short videos,
Act as a portal to relevant material
http://www.thetimes100.co.uk/case-study-- This case study shows how a carefully
the-use-marketing-mix-product-launch--87- balanced marketing mix provides the
303-1.php platform for launching and re-launching a
brand onto the market
http://www.thetimes100.co.uk/theory/theory- The theory of sales and marketing
Mary Queen of Shops BBC2 series featuring Mary Portas, one of
the UK’s foremost authorities on retail and
The Apprentice BBC1 series lasting 12 weeks each year
during which candidates compete for the
prize of becoming an apprentice for Sir
Alan Sugar, one of Britain’s most
successful retailers. The candidates are
divided into two teams and are set tasks to
stretch their creative and business skills
with a view to making a profit.