Microwave: Value War in High Price

Under the general understanding that “microwave ovens are only heating tools”, can sensitive consumers accept the high-end price of high-end microwave ovens? How can a microwave oven company withstand the pain of the transition from a low price to a high price?

A statistical data from the China Household Electrical Appliances Association shows that the microwave oven market in the country is increasingly showing high-end features. At present, Galanz and Midea, the two giants that account for over 90% of the Chinese microwave oven market and over 70% of the global microwave oven market, have each held a massive press conference. Midea announced that it will stop selling microwave ovens under 399 yuan in department store supermarkets and stop selling products under 599 yuan in home appliance chain systems. Galanz stated that it no longer puts three or five hundred yuan of low-end microwave oven products into home appliance stores. Since then, the microwave oven industry has advanced into the era of high prices.

The kitchen supporting role becomes protagonist

In the past decade, the domestic microwave oven industry's competition was basically limited to the “price war.” This approach has caused foreign giants to be squeezed out of the Chinese market. The two major oligarchs of the United States and Galanz have monopolized over 90% of the microwave oven market in China. However, the cruel commercial warfare also left serious side effects - the value of microwave ovens in the minds of consumers was rapidly lowered. A microwave oven worth only three or five hundred yuan has become the consensus of most consumers. Such products occupy sales. A big part. This psychological price point is actually the cost of a microwave oven. The direct consequence of this is that the entire Chinese microwave oven industry has been searching for a way to reduce costs for many years, and has been slow to develop its products and technologies.

As one of the greatest world inventions of the 20th century, the microwave oven has been hailed as a kitchen revolutionary product by virtue of its advantages such as rapidity and convenience. Since the 90s of the last century, microwave ovens have gradually entered the ordinary family in China. Especially in the first-tier cities, its penetration rate is as high as 95%, and the usage rate is as high as 100%. However, the use of microwave ovens as cooking cookers accounts for less than 40%. The use value of microwave ovens in homes is not fully realized. Consumers generally only Use about 5% of its function, namely food heating and thawing. This has become a bottleneck for microwave oven companies and industries.

Therefore, 10,000 yuan microwave ovens are obviously too expensive for price-sensitive consumers. For a variety of intelligent nutrition menu designs, some consumers are even more confused and wonder how to properly use the various functions; while others are worried about their expensive and cumbersome after-sales repairs; This product can be so good, it is estimated that many cooks must be unemployed," a joke tells the true feelings of many consumers.

However, industry experts believe that consumers are not without demand for high-end products, but changes in consumer habits and development are not an occasion to make progress. The transformation and upgrading of the microwave market also needs consumer education to help.

Price Warfare Value War

In fact, the biggest obstacle in the field of microwave ovens is not the problem of people's consumption concept, but technological innovation. In order to do a good job in the microwave business, it is very important to build a perfect innovation system. Because, the large-scale manufacturing capability is still the core competitiveness of China's home appliance companies, and Chinese companies hold the entire microwave oven industry chain starting from magnetrons. Once, the production and sales volume of Galanz and Midea’s microwave ovens totaled more than 40 million units, accounting for approximately 60% of the 70 million microwave ovens produced and sold worldwide. However, as microwave ovens are transferred from Europe and the United States to Japan and South Korea and then to China, some Japanese and Korean companies still occupy the high-end market of microwave ovens. European, American, Japanese and Korean companies still control the voice of the global microwave oven industry standard.

From scratch, from strong to strong, microwave ovens have witnessed the industry's constant innovation in technology and products. As early as 2009, Midea launched a series of high-end "Steam Cube" products with a price of more than 3,000 yuan. Galanz was not to be outdone. In 2009, it launched the "China Red" series of all-round lightwave microwave ovens; in February 2011, it launched a high-profile launch of the world's first round Smart microwave oven UOVO; at the end of the year, they successively released a level-one energy-efficient microwave oven and a "frequency-converting lightwave microwave oven," and used innovative technologies to lock in the mid-to-high-end market. Galanz and Midea have set up the Domestic Marketing Department and the Overseas Marketing Department to be responsible for the outstanding work in the two markets. Focusing on consumers, focusing on market demand, organizing resources for product strategy design and marketing communication.

In fact, since the beginning of the financial crisis, due to the continued rise in domestic labor costs, the gradual disappearance of the demographic dividend, and the appreciation of the renminbi, the days when the Chinese manufacturing industry won international orders with its single, low-cost advantage have gone and China's manufacturing industry has gone. Is facing a turning point in urgent need of transformation. For example, the OEM model brings huge profits to the microwave oven industry. However, with the changes in the economic environment, OEM models for other people's clothing have caused major obstacles to the world market. Microwave ovens with OEM as the main mode are not sufficient enough to participate in international competition based on the advantages of low cost or vertical integration of upstream and downstream industry chains. They need to jump out of the existing conditions to think, break through the overall strategy, and manage the process. And brand building up and down great efforts to start the transition.

The transformation is not abandoning the traditional industry. It is the structural change of the business and management to obtain a substantial increase in operating performance. The core of the transformation of manufacturing companies is how to more effectively seize customers, in order to create a competitive advantage for the future. Thus, the outlet of the microwave oven industry must be to abandon the production of single-function low-end products, from the "price war" to "value war."

As the profitability of small home appliances has shrunk, home appliance manufacturers have integrated various functions and value-added elements such as fashion, health, low-carbon, and antibacterial to further increase profits. These high value-added products are directly proportional to the profit of small household appliances. After being given high added value, the profits of small household appliances have generally increased by 30% or more. From the perspective of the entire industry, after the major home appliance companies entered the market, the market became saturated and the profitability of the company became smaller. The low added value of low-end products has a low added value. After the high-end products have increased the profitability of the products, the increase in profits has also prompted more companies to join the ranks of high-end product development.

From the perspective of consumers to research products and industrial structure, and constantly enhance industrial value, we must abandon the production of single-function low-grade products and complete the strategic transformation from “price war” to “value war”. There are two main points to this: First, microwave ovens must be truly consumer-oriented in internal processes. For example, in the interior of microwave ovens in the United States, the marketing department is the first, because they directly face the market and hold first-hand information from consumers. Second, based on a thorough investigation of the market, the value of the microwave oven industry value chain itself is expanded. The development of Galanz microwave ovens is not limited to the hardware products themselves, but extends to hardware-related industries such as the food chain, processing chain and service chain, including ingredients, food, appliances and services. In addition, it is also possible to implement a set of production. The order is submitted by the terminal, the customer is summarized, the division is submitted, and the headquarters is produced according to the order and shipped.

With regard to the current market pattern of microwave ovens, the brand height determines the speed of development, and the influence of the brand determines the market penetration. As the functions of microwave ovens have been developed toward the “almighty” direction, they have shifted from focusing on market share and competition orientation to providing consumers with high-efficiency, more nutritious and healthier cooking platforms, and increasing the value of products through product upgrades Competitiveness, in turn, enhances valuable market share.

In fact, in Japan, a high-end microwave oven with a full-featured and advanced performance can sell 200,000 yen, which is more than 10,000 yuan. If compared with this, the price of microwave ovens in China is indeed very low, with three or five hundred yuan, which is almost equivalent to eating a meal in a restaurant. But from a different perspective, if most Chinese people only use hot and hot leftovers, warm milk, or thawing of chicken, duck, and duck for the use of microwave ovens, microwave ovens are only a supporting role in Chinese kitchens.

Compared with mass-price products, these high-priced microwave ovens are not only conducive to the performance of leading companies and highlight their brand status. The key is to use high-end products to open up profit margins and help escape the quagmire of price wars. Regardless of the United States or Galanz, low-priced products are still the key to supporting the scale of production. A balance must be chosen between scale and profit. In this regard, the "10,000 yuan" microwave oven is not used to drive sales. The real purpose is to drive the sales of microwave ovens between 2000 and 3,000 yuan. Only by raising the entire industry's price system can the entire industry focus on improving product quality rather than vicious price competition.

In fact, it is not terrible that products are expensive to sell. The key is whether they can afford value and whether they can be accepted by consumers. Seven or eight years ago, a traditional CRT TV sold for only seven or eight hundred yuan, but today's LCD TVs have sold for seven or eight thousand yuan. The market is still hot because people feel that they have value for money. Therefore, manufacturers of microwave ovens cannot complain that consumers only recognize “low prices”. Instead, they should think about what “high-quality” products are produced. Because Chinese companies do not lack the hard work and lack wisdom, the most important thing is to do the details. Regardless of whether Galanz is beautiful or not, as long as it takes time and effort in every detail, finding the balance point in the high-end market of microwave ovens will naturally come in handy.

"Is microwave oven not convenient for hot rice and hot dishes?" People's microwave oven usage habits are quite representative among consumers. Due to the simple functions of hot meals and hot dishes, although the microwave oven products have been diversified and combined from a single heating function, they have various functions such as steaming, frying, boiling, frying, stewing, and baking. In fact, it is a strange phenomenon that “every family has a microwave oven, but every family does not use it”.

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