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How to Write a SWOT Analysis Paper
Successful businesses and people have been conducting SWOTs since at least the mid-twentieth century and have refined the process over time. The four categories you will explore in your SWOT analysis paper are Strengths (S), Weaknesses (W), Opportunities (O), and Threats (T). You can use SWOT analysis to help you assess your position in project planning, business development, finance, relationships, or for personal growth. Since SWOT analysis papers are usually assigned in business school or associated with business planning, we will focus on the steps for writing a SWOT analysis paper for business, but keep in mind that the process can be tailored to any situation—professional or personal.
If this process sounds laborious or daunting, do not fret: As with most things, conducting a SWOT analysis will get easier the more you do it, and eventually it might become an essential part of all of your decision-making processes. As you evaluate your business's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, you will gain skills and insights that can help you evaluate yourself, your business, and various decisions you are facing.
Better than a pros and cons list
Perhaps you are thinking, This sounds just like a pros and cons list . A SWOT analysis provides more information than a simple pros and cons list, and it makes it easier to identify potential action items and areas for growth. SWOT analysis considers more than just the pros and cons of a situation: It helps you identify internal and external factors that contribute to or inhibit your success.
Strengths and Weaknesses are generally considered internal factors, so they are things that you or your company can control or can work to improve.
Opportunities and Threats are typically external factors that occur outside of your business (i.e., things that you cannot control), but they are things that could significantly affect you or your business.
Identify your objective/goal
To get the most benefit from your SWOT analysis, be as specific as possible with your objective . If you are analyzing a business, consider focusing on one particular aspect of the business.
The best way to formulate your paper is to use a SWOT analysis chart to organize your thoughts before you actually start writing.
Write down the initial strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, or threats that come to mind when you consider the objective. Use bullet points to separate items, be specific, and remember that you do not have to write in complete sentences on this chart. To be sure that you explore all applicable points, consider the following questions:
- What does the business do best?
- What do people like about it?
- What draws people to the business?
- What does the business offer that competitors can't or don't offer?
- What puts the business at a disadvantage?
- Consider employee feedback and customer reviews: Are there any items that multiple people have identified as issues?
- In what areas does the business have less resources than competitors?
- Why do potential clients choose a competitor over you?
- What areas would you like to improve?
Be honest as you assess the business's weaknesses. Consider what aspects put your business at a disadvantage or what factors limit your growth potential. If you shy away from identifying weaknesses in this step, your SWOT analysis will not be effective or beneficial. Although it can be painful to identify weaknesses that are currently holding you back from personal or business growth, identifying and exploring these areas will give you the opportunity to improve. If you are uncertain if an item should be classified as a Weakness or a Threat , remember that Weaknesses are internal (things within the business that you can work to change) and Threats are external (things you have little or no control over). Also, accurately identifying weaknesses might help you recognize potential opportunities and/or threats.
- Are there any potential market trends that suggest growth in your field in the coming year?
- Does the business have any possible partnerships or sponsorships on the horizon?
- Is the business considering expanding or developing new product lines or specialties?
In addition to any obvious opportunities, look at the strengths you've listed and see if there are any ways that you can turn strengths into opportunities.
- Is the business affected by government policy? If so, are there any potential policy changes in the future?
- What obstacles prevent you from doing more business or making more sales? Be specific and list them all.
- Do you have periods of unreliable cash flow that threaten the business?
- Does the weather or season affect the business?
Once you have listed all the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, prioritize the results in each category from most impactful to least. Prioritizing your results in each of the four categories will help you visualize each item's importance so you can see how it relates to the other areas.
Writing the SWOT analysis paper
Now that you have filled out the SWOT chart and prioritized your SWOT results, you have the basic information to begin drafting your SWOT analysis paper. As with any professional paper, start with a strong introduction and state your objection and the focus of your SWOT analysis. In the next four paragraphs, describe the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats that you prioritized on your SWOT analysis chart. If you have more items for each category than can comfortably fit in a paragraph, consider condensing your list. As you review the lists in each category, eliminate redundancies and consolidate similar items. If you still have too many items to fit in one paragraph after condensing, include one to three bullet points per paragraph, and try to keep the paragraphs balanced. For example, if you write three paragraphs for strengths, try to write three paragraphs for the other three categories as well.
Once you have identified and described your SWOTs, you can use your SWOT analysis chart to develop strategies and create a plan to achieve your business goals. The analysis is the most essential part of the SWOT analysis paper, because in this portion you will create action items and develop plans that can lead to future success. Assess each of the four areas (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) and look for commonalities or links between the categories. Some things to consider during this step:
- Can you use one of your strengths to address a threat?
- Look for ways to use your strengths to minimize your weaknesses.
- How can you use your strengths to seize growth opportunities?
- Is there a way to use your strengths to overcome threats?
- Are there any weaknesses that you can address and eliminate?
- Can you balance out a weakness by pursuing one of your opportunities?
- Are your weaknesses preventing you from capitalizing on opportunities?
- Are your weaknesses enhancing the likelihood that the business will suffer from a threat? If so, look to your strengths and see if there is a way to draw from your strengths to reduce the potential impact of the threat.
As you find connections between the bullet points in the four quadrants of your chart, start writing to generate ideas that you can turn into action. You can come back to edit these sentences and perfect these ideas later, but go ahead and record the thoughts now so you do not miss any potential connections. As you identify how different bullet points relate to each other, prioritize items that will generate revenue or reduce expenditure. Now, assess the action items that you have identified and put them in the order that makes the most sense to you. You can arrange your action items in the order that you would like to address them, or you can arrange them in the order that would make the most financial impact on the business. Organize the paragraphs in this section of the paper in your preferred order.
Now that you have performed a comprehensive SWOT analysis and identified action items to enhance strengths and reduce weaknesses, write a strong conclusion paragraph summarizing the most important findings. Keep in mind the purpose of your SWOT analysis paper here: If you intend to share this information with potential investors, make sure that you present a clear vision for growth and that you are realistic about how you will address weaknesses and potential threats. The crucial last step for any paper is to proofread, edit, and revise as needed. Now that you have completed your SWOT analysis and identified action plans, consider if applying a SWOT analysis to another aspect of your business or area of your life. Make a note in your calendar and conduct another SWOT analysis on this issue in six to twelve months so you can measure progress towards your goals.
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How to Write a SWOT Analysis (Template and Examples Included)
Written by Scribendi
Planning for the Future
Where do you see yourself in five years? How about your career? Your business?
These questions keep a staggering amount of people awake at night. All too often, the future can seem like a dark, ominous cloud that looms just out of view. As the old proverb goes, we fear the unknown—and little can possibly be more unknowable than the future.
While there is no crystal ball that can accurately predict future market trends or the steps you should take to optimize your productivity and sharpen your competitive edge, we can offer some advice: Reframe the question. Rather than trying to pinpoint where you think you might be in five years, think about where you want to be at that point in time. Once you have a destination in mind, you can start planning a route to get there. After all, maps are great tools, but they can't help you if you don't know where you're going.
So, what's the metaphorical map in this scenario? We present to you the SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis.
How to Write a SWOT Analysis
SWOT analyses are great strategic tools that are useful in project planning, business development , financial strategizing, and personal advancement . Simple, honest, and to-the-point, they facilitate a profound understanding of your or your business's current standing. Essentially, a SWOT analysis is a comparative list of all your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
There's more power in this process than you might think. You may be only hazily aware of your own strengths and weaknesses. However, thoughtfully recording and reflecting on them creates a thorough, conscious familiarity with both the resources available to you and the obstacles standing in your way. This awareness allows you to map out a path toward your goals with great precision and purpose. Writing a SWOT analysis will help you clearly evaluate whether your goals are feasible according to your resources and needs.
In this guide, we'll break down exactly how to write a SWOT analysis and provide a few examples along the way. Feel free to use our SWOT analysis template, given below, to write your own!
Our SWOT Analysis Template
Your list of strengths should focus on your current resources and abilities. It should relate to things that you do or that your company does well. These might be your or your company's accomplishments—both great and small—and the assets that you or your company have. Your strengths give you your greatest edge; they are the resources that propel you forward and that you can continue to develop as you progress.
When you draw up your first SWOT analysis, you may find yourself at a loss. Don't worry—it's difficult for most people to come up with an objective list of strengths and weaknesses on the spot. For your convenience, we've included a list of questions you can ask yourself to get started.
These questions should help you identify a few of your strengths. Remember, while our example questions mostly relate to business strengths, they can also apply to personal strengths. Go ahead and boast as much as you can.
- What sets your company apart from others?
- What do you have that other companies don't?
- What are you most proud of about your company?
- What makes clients come back to you?
- What does your company do well?
- What assets do you have access to?
- What qualities does your company have that other companies try to emulate?
- What has always been easy for your company?
Listing your weaknesses might be a little more uncomfortable than detailing your strengths, but trust us—doing so will help you in the long run. Understanding the obstacles in your path and the elements of your business or skills you may need to improve is just as important as appreciating your strengths. Once you're aware of your weaknesses, you can start working on them and building your next steps around them.
Your list of weaknesses should pertain to any current problems and challenges. Check out the list of questions below—it should give you an idea of where to start. Again, if you'd rather focus on your personal or career growth, feel free to alter these questions to suit your needs.
- What makes your company blend in with its competition?
- What do other companies have that you don't?
- What are the most common criticisms that you receive from clients?
- Why have certain clients not returned to you?
- What does your company need to improve upon?
- What kind of feedback do you receive from your employees?
- What might your competition consider to be a weakness?
- What has always been difficult for your company?
- What are you unwilling to do or change?
Think about the opportunities available to you as potential future strengths. Your opportunities are the assets, resources, and events that could be beneficial to you in some way in the future. You may need to change some of your current approaches or adapt in other ways to capitalize on these opportunities, and that is not necessarily a bad thing.
Here are some questions you can ask yourself to identify your potential opportunities:
- What is happening in the current market that you could capitalize upon?
- What changes have you been making that have returned positive results?
- What is working for other companies?
- How could you introduce new technology to make your processes more efficient?
- What costs can you cut?
- Could you access new sectors or demographic groups?
- How can you improve or modernize your marketing techniques?
- How can you remove existing obstacles?
Just as your opportunities are based on potential, so are your threats; these are the possible obstacles or issues that are not yet directly affecting your progress. But this doesn't mean that you shouldn't start thinking about them! Being aware of the challenges that you may encounter will help you either plan around them or confront them with solutions. Try to come up with several future events that may realistically hinder the momentum you build from engaging with your strengths and opportunities.
To get started, take a peek at our list of questions:
- What obstacles might your weaknesses create?
- Do changing market trends negatively affect your competitive edge?
- What might stand in the way of the changes you make to accommodate your strengths and opportunities?
- Do you have a lot of debt?
- Could your competition exploit your weaknesses?
How did you do? Do you feel like you've listed everything? Or do you think you're missing something? Below, we've drafted examples of a business and a personal SWOT analysis to provide you with some perspective on what a completed one might look like.
An Example of a Personal SWOT Analysis
An Example of a Business SWOT Analysis
The humble but effective SWOT analysis will produce a detailed map of your current environment—its hills and valleys alike. Knowing how to write a SWOT analysis will provide you with the vantage point you need to choose a direction and blaze a trail toward your goals. SWOT analyses may not be crystal balls, but they are something like compasses. Use them wisely, and you will never be lost.
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SWOT Analysis: How To Do One [With Template & Examples]
Published: October 05, 2023
As your business grows, you need a roadmap to help navigate the obstacles, challenges, opportunities, and projects that come your way. Enter: the SWOT analysis.
This framework can help you develop a plan to determine your priorities, maximize opportunities, and minimize roadblocks as you scale your organization. Below, let’s go over exactly what a SWOT analysis is, a few SWOT analysis examples, and how to conduct one for your business.
When you’re done reading, you’ll have all the inspiration and tactical advice you need to tackle a SWOT analysis for your business.
What is a SWOT analysis? Importance of a SWOT Analysis How to Write a Good SWOT Analysis SWOT Analysis Examples How to Act on a SWOT Analysis
What is a SWOT analysis?
A SWOT analysis is a strategic planning technique that puts your business in perspective using the following lenses: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Using a SWOT analysis helps you identify ways your business can improve and maximize opportunities, while simultaneously determining negative factors that might hinder your chances of success.
While it may seem simple on the surface, a SWOT analysis allows you to make unbiased evaluations on:
- Your business or brand.
- Market positioning.
- A new project or initiative.
- A specific campaign or channel.
Practically anything that requires strategic planning, internal or external, can have the SWOT framework applied to it, helping you avoid unnecessary errors down the road from lack of insight.
Free SWOT Analysis Template
A free SWOT analysis template, plus other helpful market research resources.
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Click this link to access this resource at any time.
Importance of a SWOT Analysis
You’ve noticed by now that SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. The framework seems simple enough that you’d be tempted to forgo using it at all, relying instead on your intuition to take these things into account.
But you shouldn’t. Doing a SWOT analysis is important. Here’s why.
SWOT gives you the chance to worry and to dream.
A SWOT analysis is an important step in your strategic process because it gives you the opportunity to explore both the potential risks and the exciting possibilities that lie ahead. You’re giving yourself the space to dream, evaluate, and worry before taking action. Your insights then turn into assets as you create the roadmap for your initiative.
For instance, when you consider the weaknesses and threats that your business may face, you can address any concerns or challenges and strategize on how to mitigate those risks. At the same time, you can identify strengths and opportunities, which can inspire innovative ideas and help you dream big. Both are equally important.
SWOT forces you to define your variables.
Instead of diving head first into planning and execution, you’re taking inventory of all your assets and roadblocks. This process will help you develop strategies that leverage your strengths and opportunities while addressing and mitigating the impact of weaknesses and threats.
As a result, you'll gain a comprehensive understanding of your current situation and create a more specific and effective roadmap. Plus, a SWOT analysis is inherently proactive. That means you'll be better equipped to make informed decisions, allocate resources effectively, and set realistic goals.
SWOT allows you to account for mitigating factors.
As you identify weaknesses and threats, you’re better able to account for them in your roadmap, improving your chances of success.
Moreover, accounting for mitigating factors allows you to allocate your resources wisely and make informed decisions that lead to sustainable growth. With a SWOT analysis as a guide, you can confidently face challenges and seize opportunities.
SWOT helps you keep a written record.
As your organization grows and changes, you’ll be able to strike things off your old SWOTs and make additions. You can look back at where you came from and look ahead at what’s to come.
In other words, SWOT analyses serve as a tangible history of your progress and provide a reference point for future decision-making. With each update, your SWOT analysis becomes a living document that guides your strategic thinking and helps you stay agile and adaptable in an ever-changing business landscape.
By maintaining this written record, you foster a culture of continuous improvement and empower your team to make data-driven decisions and stay aligned with your long-term vision.
Parts of a SWOT Analysis
Conducting a SWOT analysis will help you strategize effectively, unlock valuable insights, and make informed decisions. But what exactly does a SWOT analysis include?
Let’s explore each component: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.
Your strengths are the unique advantages and internal capabilities that give your company a competitive edge in the market. A strong brand reputation, innovative products or services, or exceptional customer service are just a few examples. By identifying and capitalizing on your strengths, you can foster customer loyalty and build a solid foundation for growth.
No business is flawless. Weaknesses are areas where you may face challenges or fall short of your potential. It could be outdated processes, skill gaps within the team, or inadequate resources. By acknowledging these weaknesses, you can establish targeted initiatives for improvement, upskill your team, adopt new technologies, and enhance your overall operational efficiency.
Opportunities are external factors that can contribute to your company's progress. These may include emerging markets, technological advancements, changes in consumer behavior, or gaps in the market that your company can fill. By seizing these opportunities, you can expand your market reach, diversify your product offerings, forge strategic partnerships, or even venture into untapped territories.
Threats are external factors that are beyond your control and pose challenges to your business. Increased competition, economic volatility, evolving regulatory landscapes, or even changing market trends are examples of threats. By proactively assessing and addressing them, you can develop contingency plans, adjust your strategies, and minimize their impact on your operations.
In a SWOT analysis, you’ll have to take both internal and external factors into account. We’ll cover those next.
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SWOT Analysis Internal and External Factors
A SWOT analysis typically has internal (i.e., within your organization) and external (i.e., outside your organization) factors at play. Here's a breakdown of each.
Internal factors refer to the characteristics and resources within your organization that directly influence its operations and performance. These factors are completely within your organization's control, so they can be modified, improved, or capitalized upon.
In a SWOT analysis, strengths and weaknesses are categorized as internal factors. Let’s look at a few examples.
- Brand reputation
- Unique expertise
- Loyal customer base
- Talented workforce
- Efficient processes
- Proprietary technology
- Outdated technology
- Inadequate resources
- Poor financial health
- Inefficient processes
- Skill gaps within the team
External factors are elements outside the organization's control that have an impact on its operations, market position, and success. These factors arise from the industry climate and the broader business environment. You typically have no control over external factors, but you can respond to them.
In a SWOT analysis, opportunities and threats are categorized as external factors. Let’s look at a few examples.
- Emerging markets
- Changing consumer trends
- Technological advancements
- Positive shifts in regulations
- New gaps in the market you could fill
- Intense competition
- Economic downturns
- Disruptive technologies
- Changing regulations
- Negative shifts in consumer behavior
Remember, a well-rounded SWOT analysis empowers you to capitalize on strengths, address weaknesses, seize opportunities, and navigate threats — all while making informed decisions for the future.
Now, let’s take a look at how you can write a good SWOT analysis for yourself or for stakeholders.
How do you write a good SWOT analysis?
There are several steps you’ll want to take when evaluating your business and conducting a strategic SWOT analysis.
1. Download HubSpot's SWOT Analysis Template.
There’s no need to start from scratch for your analysis. Instead, start by downloading a free, editable template from HubSpot. Feel free to use the model yourself, or create your own as it suits your needs.
3. Identify your objective.
Before you start writing things down, you’ll need to figure out what you’re evaluating with your SWOT analysis.
Be specific about what you want to analyze. Otherwise, your SWOT analysis may end up being too broad, and you’ll get analysis paralysis as you are making your evaluations.
If you’re creating a new social media program, you’ll want to conduct an analysis to inform your content creation strategy. If you’re launching a new product, you’ll want to understand its potential positioning in the space. If you’re considering a brand redesign, you’ll want to consider existing and future brand conceptions.
All of these are examples of good reasons to conduct a SWOT analysis. By identifying your objective, you’ll be able to tailor your evaluation to get more actionable insights.
4. Identify your strengths.
“Strengths” refers to what you are currently doing well. Think about the factors that are going in your favor as well as the things you offer that your competitors just can’t beat.
For example, let’s say you want to use a SWOT analysis to evaluate your new social media strategy.
If you’re looking at a new social media program, perhaps you want to evaluate how your brand is perceived by the public. Is it easily recognizable and well-known? Even if it’s not popular with a widespread group, is it well-received by a specific audience?
Next, think about your process: Is it effective or innovative? Is there good communication between marketing and sales?
Finally, evaluate your social media message, and in particular, how it differs from the rest of the industry. I’m willing to bet you can make a lengthy list of some major strengths of your social media strategy over your competitors, so try to dive into your strengths from there.
5. Identify your weaknesses.
In contrast to your strengths, what are the roadblocks hindering you from reaching your goals? What do your competitors offer that continues to be a thorn in your side?
This section isn’t about dwelling on negative aspects. Rather, it’s critical to foresee any potential obstacles that could mitigate your success.
When identifying weaknesses, consider what areas of your business are the least profitable, where you lack certain resources, or what costs you the most time and money. Take input from employees in different departments, as they’ll likely see weaknesses you hadn’t considered.
If you’re examining a new social media strategy, you might start by asking yourself these questions: First, if I were a consumer, what would prevent me from buying this product, or engaging with this business? What would make me click away from the screen?
Second, what do I foresee as the biggest hindrance to my employees’ productivity, or their ability to get the job done efficiently? What derails their social media efforts?
6. Consider your opportunities.
This is your chance to dream big. What are some opportunities for your social media strategy you hope, but don’t necessarily expect, to reach?
For instance, maybe you’re hoping your Facebook ads will attract a new, larger demographic. Maybe you’re hoping your YouTube video gets 10,000 views and increases sales by 10%.
Whatever the case, it’s important to include potential opportunities in your SWOT analysis. Ask yourself these questions:
- What technologies do I want my business to use to make it more effective?
- What new target audience do I want to reach?
- How can the business stand out more in the current industry?
- Is there something our customers complain about that we could fix?
The opportunities category goes hand-in-hand with the weaknesses category. Once you’ve made a list of weaknesses, it should be easy to create a list of potential opportunities that could arise if you eliminate your weaknesses.
7. Contemplate your threats.
It’s likely, especially if you’re prone to worry, you already have a good list of threats in your head.
If not, gather your employees and brainstorm. Start with these questions:
- What obstacles might prevent us from reaching our goals?
- What’s going on in the industry, or with our competitors, that might mitigate our success?
- Is there new technology out there that could conflict with our product?
Writing down your threats helps you evaluate them objectively.
For instance, maybe you list your threats in terms of least and most likely to occur and divide and conquer each. If one of your biggest threats is your competitor’s popular Instagram account, you could work with your marketing department to create content that showcases your product’s unique features.
SWOT Analysis Chart
Download a free SWOT analysis chart included in HubSpot’s free market research kit .
A SWOT analysis doesn’t have to be fancy. Our SWOT analysis chart provides a clear and structured framework for capturing and organizing your internal strengths and weaknesses, and external opportunities and threats. It's the perfect visual aid to make sense of the wealth of information gathered during your analysis.
(Plus, you can always customize and paste it into a document you plan to share with stakeholders.)
But remember: Filling out the SWOT chart is just one step in the process. Combine it with our entire market research kit , and you'll have all the tools necessary to help your organization navigate new opportunities and threats.
SWOT Analysis Examples
The template above helps get you started on your own SWOT analysis.
But, if you’re anything like me, it’s not enough to see a template. To fully understand a concept, you need to see how it plays out in the real world.
These SWOT examples are not exhaustive. However, they are a great starting point to inspire you as you do your own SWOT analysis.
Apple’s SWOT analysis
Here’s how we’d conduct a SWOT analysis on Apple.
First off, strengths. While Apple has many strengths, let’s identify the top three:
- Brand recognition.
- Innovative products.
- Ease of use.
Apple’s brand is undeniably strong, and its business is considered the most valuable in the world . Since it’s easily recognized, Apple can produce new products and almost ensure a certain degree of success by virtue of the brand name itself.
Apple’s highly innovative products are often at the forefront of the industry. One thing that sets Apple apart from the competition is its product inter-connectivity.
For instance, an Apple user can easily sync their iPhone and iPad together. They can access all of their photos, contacts, apps, and more no matter which device they are using.
Lastly, customers enjoy how easy it is to use Apple’s products. With a sleek and simple design, each product is developed so that most people can quickly learn how to use them.
Next, let’s look at three of Apple’s weaknesses.
- High prices
- Closed ecosystem
- Lack of experimentation
While the high prices don’t deter Apple’s middle- and upper-class customer base, they do hinder Apple’s ability to reach a lower-class demographic.
Apple also suffers from its own exclusivity. Apple controls all its services and products in-house, and while many customers become loyal brand advocates for this reason, it means all burdens fall on Apple employees.
Ultimately, Apple’s tight control over who distributes its products limits its market reach.
Lastly, Apple is held to a high standard when it comes to creating and distributing products. Apple’s brand carries a high level of prestige. That level of recognition inhibits Apple from taking risks and experimenting freely with new products that could fail.
Now, let’s take a look at opportunities for Apple.
It’s easy to recognize opportunities for improvement, once you consider Apple’s weaknesses. Here’s a list of three we came up with:
- Expand distribution options.
- Create new product lines.
- Technological advancement.
One of Apple’s biggest weaknesses is its distribution network, which, in the name of exclusivity, remains relatively small. If Apple expanded its network and enabled third-party businesses to sell its products, it could reach more people globally, while alleviating some of the stress currently put on in-house employees.
There are also plenty of opportunities for Apple to create new products. Apple could consider creating more affordable products to reach a larger demographic, or spreading out into new industries — Apple self-driving cars, perhaps?
Finally, Apple could continue advancing its products’ technology. Apple can take existing products and refine them, ensuring each product offers as many unique features as possible.
Finally, let’s look at threats to Apple.
Believe it or not, they do exist.
Here are three of Apple’s biggest threats:
- Tough competition.
- International issues.
Apple isn’t the only innovative tech company out there, and it continues to face tough competition from Samsung, Google, and other major forces. In fact, Samsung sold more smartphones than Apple did in Q1 of 2022 , shipping 17 million more units than Apple and holding 24% of the market share.
Many of Apple’s weaknesses hinder Apple’s ability to compete with the tech corporations that have more freedom to experiment, or that don’t operate in a closed ecosystem.
A second threat to Apple is lawsuits. Apple has faced plenty of lawsuits, particularly between Apple and Samsung . These lawsuits interfere with Apple’s reputable image and could steer some customers to purchase elsewhere.
Finally, Apple needs to improve its reach internationally. The company isn’t number one in China and doesn’t have a very positive relationship with the Chinese government. In India, which has one of the largest consumer markets in the world, Apple’s market share is low , and the company has trouble bringing stores to India’s market.
If Apple can’t compete globally the way Samsung or Google can, it risks falling behind in the industry.
Starbucks SWOT Analysis
Now that we’ve explored the nuances involved with a SWOT analysis, let’s fill out a SWOT template using Starbucks as an example.
Here’s how we’d fill out a SWOT template if we were Starbucks:
Download this Template for Free
Restaurant Small Business SWOT Analysis
Some small business marketers may have difficulty relating to the SWOTs of big brands like Apple and Starbucks. Here’s an example of how a dine-in Thai restaurant might visualize each element.
Small restaurants can lean into their culinary expertise and service skills to find opportunities for growth and brand awareness. A SWOT analysis can also help identify weaknesses that can be improved, such as menu variation and pricing.
While a restaurant might not be as worried about high-level lawsuits, a small business might be more concerned about competitors or disruptors that might enter the playing field.
Local Boutique SWOT Analysis
In another small business example, let’s take a look at a SWOT analysis for a local boutique.
This shop might be well known in its neighborhood, but it also might take time to build an online presence or get its products in an online store.
Because of this, some of its strengths and opportunities might relate to physical factors while weaknesses and threats might relate to online situations.
How to Act on a SWOT Analysis
After conducting a SWOT analysis, you may be asking yourself: What’s next?
Putting together a SWOT analysis is only one step. Executing the findings identified by the analysis is just as important — if not more.
Put your insights into action using the following steps.
Take advantage of your strengths.
Use your strengths to pursue opportunities from your analysis.
For example, if we look at the local boutique example above, the strength of having affordable prices can be a value proposition. You can emphasize your affordable prices on social media or launch an online store.
Address your weaknesses.
Back to the boutique example, one of its weaknesses is having a poor social media presence. To mitigate this, the boutique could hire a social media consultant to improve its strategy. They may even tap into the expertise of a social-savvy employee.
Make note of the threats.
Threats are often external factors that can’t be controlled, so it’s best to monitor the threats outlined in your SWOT analysis to be aware of their impacts on your business.
When to Use a SWOT Analysis
While the examples above focus on business strategy in general, you can also use a SWOT analysis to evaluate and predict how a singular product will play out in the market.
Ultimately, a SWOT analysis can measure and tackle both big and small challenges, from deciding whether or not to launch a new product to refining your social media strategy.
Editor's note: This post was originally published in May 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
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Your Full Guide on How to Write a SWOT Analysis
SWOT analysis is one of those tools that you'll come across in any field. For example, it's used to define a product's competitive advantage, create a strategic plan for a business, and gain insights into consumer behavior.
But it's not just businesses that benefit from this technique. Personal SWOT analysis helps people plan their careers in the most optimal way possible, too.
As versatile as it is, SWOT analysis is not at all complicated. That's why its adoption rate is through the roof. And that's why you should learn how to take advantage of it, whether for an assignment or not.
To help you out with that, let's rely on our rich writing services experience and use it to break down in detail:
- What a SWOT analysis is;
- How it's applied in business strategies and marketing efforts;
- How to use the SWOT framework for any task;
- 4 real-world SWOT analysis examples.
What Is SWOT Analysis, Exactly?
Any SWOT analysis template contains four sections, presented in a two-by-two matrix:
- Strengths – your inherent qualities, resources, or skills that set you apart from the rest;
- Weaknesses – whatever is or may be stopping you or the business from performing well;
- Opportunities – external factors that you can use to your advantage to become more competitive;
- Threats – external factors that may harm your performance in the short or long run.
Internal and External Factors in SWOT Analysis
Each section represents a list of factors. These sections can be grouped into two broader categories: internal and external factors.
Internal factors – Strengths and Weaknesses in the first row – are inherent to you or the company. However, you can also do something about them if need be. Think of your skills as a professional if you're working on a personal SWOT analysis, for example.
External factors – Opportunities and Threats in the second row – aren't under your personal or the company's control. But they have an impact on you or the business, nonetheless. Once-in-a-lifetime pandemics, inflation, or industry trends are good examples here.
Positive vs Negative Factors
Another way to think about the SWOT matrix is by juxtaposing negative and positive factors :
- Strengths and Opportunities can help you or the company achieve your goal or succeed at a project. So, they represent positive factors.
- Weaknesses and Threats can negatively impact your progress and have to be mitigated. They're negative factors.
Why is SWOT Analysis Important?
Now that the question ‘What is a SWOT Analysis?’ is answered, you must have several others on your mind. So let's answer them one by one.
Who Should Do a SWOT Analysis?
Businesses of all sizes and in all industries can benefit from SWOT analyses. So, whether you're a prospective entrepreneur, a small business owner, or a C-level executive, this technique will be a useful arrow in your quiver.
You can also benefit from conducting a personal SWOT analysis. It would be best if you did it when looking for a job or facing a major life decision.
Why Should You Do a SWOT Analysis?
At its core, SWOT analysis is a strategic planning technique. It's meant to help you organize all the factors. That, in turn, enables you to gain key insights into where you stand and how you can move from point A to point B.
How does it help you in strategic planning, exactly? The SWOT matrix shows you:
- Which strengths you should maximize and emphasize;
- Which weaknesses you should minimize and keep at bay;
- Which opportunities you can take advantage of;
- Which threats you should look out for and counter.
All of this leads to one outcome: better, more informed decision-making. Plus, SWOT analysis is notorious for challenging your assumptions as long as everyone involved is straightforward and honest in their answers.
What Can SWOT Framework Be Used For?
Now, let's talk about real-life practical applications of this technique. Here are three SWOT analysis examples:
- Choosing the business model for a new enterprise;
- Creating a break-even analysis and a business plan;
- Analyzing the company's quarterly and annual performance.
At a personal level, you can also conduct your own SWOT analysis to:
- Increase your chances of landing a job;
- Position yourself for getting a promotion;
- Understand what needs to change in your life in general.
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How to Conduct a SWOT Analysis in 8 Steps
SWOT analysis isn't complicated to conduct, and that's why they are so popular. Yet, it might be a wrong first impression.
A good SWOT analysis can take hours and should involve multiple people in a brainstorming session. It should also be as objective as possible – which can be harder to achieve than it seems.
So, how do you use a SWOT analysis – and get a quality result for your strategic decision-making process? Here's your step-by-step SWOT analysis example that you can use as a guide. If you need a custom writing -address to professionals.
1. Determine Your Goal
Starting brainstorming without a goal means getting into the SWOT analysis blind. And your SWOT matrix will be useless – or misleading – in the long run.
For example, depending on your goal, the same factor can be a key strength or an irrelevant note. For example, if you aim to reach the 18-25 demographic in your marketing campaign, your active presence on TikTok will be a great asset. But if you need to find a way to attract more quality candidates in the hiring process, the TikTok presence will only help you a little.
So, zero in on what you want to achieve with this SWOT analysis. This can be a decision you or the company have to make – for example, whether to launch a certain product line. Your goal can also be to solve a certain problem or to create/reassess your strategy.
2. Do Your Research
Your research wouldn't be complete if you googled ‘What is a SWOT analysis?’ You'll need a lot of data during your brainstorming session. If you have it, you'll avoid guessing your company's or your own strengths or external threats related to your goal.
What Data to Look For
Your research should consist of two parts:
- Internal research . You'll need every piece of information on your or the company's performance to pinpoint the internal factors in SWOT analysis. That can include financial, sales, marketing, and other reports with key metrics.
- External research . Gather the data on your competitors, the market, the company's position and market share, and the industry as a whole. This data will be the basis for assessing your opportunities and threats.
There's one footnote, though. Depending on the goal, you'll need different data sets. So, focus on relevant data.
3. Pinpoint Your or Your Organization's Strengths
Now, it's time for the brainstorming session. If you're doing a SWOT analysis for a business, go with it: bring the right people to the table, virtual or not. It'll help you get a more objective, realistic, and complete matrix.
Start with the internal factors, namely your internal strengths: they're always easier to home in on.
Need a SWOT analysis example of a company's strengths? Here are five of them:
- Outstanding customer service with a high satisfaction rate;
- Strong financial performance;
- The first-mover advantage;
- Positive brand attributes;
- Strong technical expertise in the field.
5 Questions to Ask
Here are five questions to kick off your brainstorming and help you discover your company's strengths – or your own:
- What do you or the company do well?
- What are your strongest assets?
- Is there something only you or the company do?
- What is your competitive edge?
- What do customers appreciate about the company?
4. Zero in on Your or Your Company's Weaknesses
Now, it's time to move on to a more difficult part of assessing your internal factors: your weaknesses. Take a hard look at your or the business's performance and define what could be going better. Don't try to embellish the truth here!
Keep in mind: there are some weaknesses that you can eliminate and some others that you can only mitigate.
Looking for weaknesses SWOT analysis examples for students who run their businesses? Here are five of them:
- Poor brand recognition among the target audience;
- Suboptimal employee productivity;
- Limited resources, human or otherwise;
- Lack of intellectual property for key technologies;
- Long delivery times.
To explore your personal or business weaknesses, ask the following five questions:
- What do your competitors beat you at?
- What do customers complain about?
- What is holding back your or the company's success?
- What resources do you or the company lack?
- What are the gaps in your internal business processes?
5. Identify External Opportunities
Before you can exploit opportunities, you need to identify them in your SWOT analysis – and determine which ones are worth using, too.
For that, you'll need to turn to the external environment research you've done. Then, look at that data and pinpoint which trends or events you could take advantage of.
Need a SWOT analysis example or two here? Take a look at these three business opportunities:
- New markets emerging within the industry;
- New advertising channels rising to prominence;
- Particular customer needs that remain underserved.
4 Questions to Ask
If you don't know how to start zeroing in on opportunities, start with these four questions:
- Are there ways to gain useful resources you don't have or have little of?
- Are there any technological advancements that can help you mitigate your weaknesses?
- Are there any new or overlooked opportunities that you can exploit?
- How can the current economy or market trends be of use to you?
6. Home in on Potential Threats
Time to move on to the final part of a standard SWOT analysis: threats. These external trends and events can get in your way – or already are.
If you're working on a personal SWOT analysis, threats can include:
- High competition for the job you're after;
- Potential layoffs due to a financial crisis.
If you're conducting one for a large company or a small business, negative external factors can include:
- New emerging competitors, direct or indirect;
- New regulations that can entail considerable additional costs for the business;
- Unfavorable investment climate.
3 Questions to Ask
If you need a push in the right direction, here are three questions to help you zero in on the threats:
- Who are your competitors, and what is their market position?
- What is the state of the economy, industry, and market? Are they in decline?
- Are there any new regulations that can harm the business?
7. Review Your SWOT Analysis Matrix
Having a good SWOT analysis right after brainstorming is impossible. You need to review every factor you've written down and edit the list. Leave only the elements that truly matter – and make them more specific if required.
3 Things to Pay Attention to
There are some common caveats that you can overlook if you need to be more careful during this step. Here are three of them to avoid:
- Factors that aren't specific enough – clarify or cross them out;
- Factors that aren't evidence-based – find proof or get rid of them;
- Factors that are over- or underestimated – have a fresh pair of eyes to look at the list.
8. Decide on the Solution
Once you've finished filling out and editing your SWOT analysis template, your work is only beginning. Now, you need to take your SWOT matrix and use your findings to find the solution to your key issue.
4 Questions to Pose
Here are four questions to guide you in your solution-seeking:
- How can you maximize your strengths? Which ones should be the top priority to boost?
- How can you mitigate or eliminate your weaknesses? Which ones should be taken care of first?
- Which opportunities should you take advantage of? Which ones will pay off the most?
- Which threats can do the most harm? How can you limit their impact?
4 SWOT Analysis Examples for Students
Need something more than just a SWOT analysis template? Let's see how this tool can be applied to practice with these four real-world SWOT analysis examples for students.
But if these sample SWOT analysis still don't help you, don't panic just yet. You can always order an essay online and let professionals worry about it. And no, it won't cost you a small fortune!
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Sample Essay On SWOT Analysis
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: Company , Business , Strategy , Competition , Strengths , Advantage , Information , Politics
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The purpose of this essay is to present the theoretical background of SWOT analysis, its advantages and the disadvantages. One of the tools used in many researches not only in business area has blurred and contradicting views of its origins. Every company, business or alone actor needs to be aware of its strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities and here is where SWOT analysis comes in hand in order to reach the specific companies, business or enterprise’s goals. Since in today’s world, it is not enough to be just good, one needs to have a strategic advantage with added value to consumers. In order to reach that you need to have a SWOT analysis done. Many different tolls of research are known today and one that can be effective when taking into consideration both advantages and disadvantages is also examined SWOT analysis. The origins of SWOT are not clear (Lewin Eyal 2012, 17). The begging of a method goes back to the year 1950 to 1970 (Pahl, Richter 2007, 7). Last but not least the essay will examine the advantages and disadvantages of the SWOT analysis. The SWOT analysis is a tool and a method that examines as can be seen from its acronym strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (Speth 2015, 5). It is an important decision making tool (Valentin, Lewin 2012, 18). With strengths mostly internal factors such as employees, team, management, and members and their experience and competence play a vital role. Weakness need to be addressed to improve your enterprise and make it even better and come over the obstacles. Opportunities are (Harvard Business School Publishing Corporation 2006, 4) “trends, forces, events, and ideas that companies or unit can capitalize on”. With threats mostly external factors that will have influence on you conducting of business matter, such as regulations and politics, competition, market, social, economic and technological conditions. Every single one of factors analysis as it one part have an effect on all others. With SWOT analysis the maximization of strength and minimization of weakness can be overcome. It needs to be used in strategic purposes with showing external and internal prioritizations factors (Septh 2015, 7). The reason and purpose of doing SWOT analysis are to achieve plans for the future and set the goals, where strengths and weaknesses are internal factors and opportunities and external threat. Purpose and reason for doing SWOT can be derived from Porter’s Fife Forces that can help the business decide either to enter some industry or not and they include power of suppliers, power of barriers, competitive rivalry and availability of substitutes (Porter 1998). It matters how many suppliers the company has since that determines their power. It is important what kind of product one has and what importance it represents to the consumers, are there any competitors with similar product or service, and what are the input and output costs. With these and other factors defined by Porter taken into account the company can calculate the profitability and attractiveness. The company is working in the network of buyers, suppliers and substitutes where competition and new entrants play a very important role. For the strategic analysis Porters concepts prove to be valuable for newly started business even more. All actors on the market compete with each other and that’s why the theory of Competitive Advantage matters. Outperformance of others can be achieved (Porter 1998) with access to natural resources, skilled personnel, geographic location, entry barrier that does not permit others to become a concurrence, new technologies, that lead to a better product or service in accordance with the consumer’s needs. The focus should not be only on one core components, but on the trade-offs activity in order to reach sustainability of a strategy (Porter 1996). Based on Porter organization needs to develop unique skills that have not been seen by other organizations that need to be used in the context that makes them valuable for the company (Arhyres and McGahan 2002, 47). The purpose of the Competitive strategy is not to write strategy per se, but to create a useful strategic plan by using the right set of skills for the right purposes. The right question needs to be answered and that is why the SWOT analysis is important to be developed before an overall strategy. Porter argued that the strategy must rest on the certain economic fundamentals even though changes are constant present (Arhyres and McGahan 2002, 49). Strategic planning must focus on the purpose of the company, vision and values, key issues company is facing, with external and internal analysis, aim of competitions, operational plan and projects, sales and resource plan, monitoring and learning that will be included into the strategy that should be customized through the time (Kaplan and Northon, 2008). We can see that from Porter to Kaplan and Northon all have argued the factors that are already foreseen in the SWOT. Advantages of the SWOT analysis lie in identifying the most important internal and external factors that will have an influence on the company. The strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats are being summarized in order to “eliminate weakness and exploiting its capabilities, or to use an option in the fight against threats” (Oreski 2012, 284). Another advantage of the SWOT lies in its simplicity of usage and it is based on the real data and information not only on a theoretical level. It uses both external and internal factors. It can be used for analyzing various actors in order to create a good and effective strategy. With the SWOT strengths can reverse its weaknesses. The organizational threats can be overcome with the clear points. With a concept the objective stance is achieved with almost no extra costs for the company. With the SWOT analysis one can understand the business better. With the SWOT the identification and clarification of fundamental policy choices, programs can be seen (Kearns 1992, 25). Disadvantages of the SWOT analysis as argued by Wang can be to open nature without clear method to conduct the analysis and cannot be effective without the incorporation strategy (Wang 2015, 1). The whole SWOT is hard to present because of the changing nature of the circumstances company works. It can happen that some of the four factors because of various factors cannot be examined and because of the changing life cycle on the way to contribute to the success (Wang 2015, 2). Inability of SWOT to “quantify the effects of weight and strategic factors on alternatives” is another disadvantage. The analysis is presented as factors do not influence each other which are incorrect since they are not independent but interconnected. Another disadvantage was presented by Oreski (2012, 286) such as based only on qualitative analysis. Only using the factor determined by SWOT analysis will not suffice the needs because of the general and brief analysis not taking into account other more complicated aspects. Shallow and misleading results can be produced (Valentin 2001, 54). Many critics have gone to the simple factors included, looking into the information without interconnections and consequences of each factor have on others. It focuses on fulfilling the set of factors without looking forward to the strategic implications it wants to reach. Hill and Westbrook (1997) have even stated that it can harm the performance. The failure to prioritize and give meaning findings should eliminate the SWOT analysis from conducting. The limitation can be seen also in inability of management to control various factors. To summarize the disadvantages no prioritization, no solutions or alternatives, many different ideas without the focus on the main one, much information can be useless. The essay has showed unclear history of the origins of the SWOT analysis. Many various and contradicting information and data have been found with no real evidence of its epistemology. Regardless of its innovator that has roots around the globe that has led to today’s most known research tool, various articles were taken into consideration with presenting the advantages and disadvantages of the SWOT. To sum up both one can conclude that in some cases the SWOT can lead to good results and in many also in the opposite direction. Conduced in the right way its simple used framework can be used in various companies, actors, enterprises from a more educated and sophisticated manager to the ordinary man. For newly started companies defining the strengths, opportunities, threats and weaknesses lead to structural orientation, setting the goals and the aim company wants to achieve. For every new actor, new start up or joint venture Porter’s theory of competitive advantage can be useful. Competitive advantage needs to be reached in order for a business to be profitable and achieve its goals in an ever more interconnected world.
Arhyres, Nicholas, McGahan, M. Anita. (2002). An Interview with Michael Porter. Web. Retrieved from <file:///C:/Users/PuskA/Downloads/Content%20Interview%20%20(1).pdf> Harvard Business School Publishing Corporation. 2006. SWOT Analysis I: Looking Outside for Threats and Opportunities. Retrieved from file:///C:/Users/PuskA/Downloads/SWOT%20Analysis%20I%20-%20Threats%20and%20Opportunities%20(1).pdf Harvard Business School Publishing Corporation. 2006. SWOT Analysis II: Looking Inside for Strengths and Weaknesses. Retrieved from: file:///C:/Users/PuskA/Downloads/Strength%20&%20Weaknesses%20HBR%20(1).pdf Hill, T. & R. Westbrook. (1997). "SWOT Analysis: It’s Time for a Product Recall". Long Range Planning 30 (1): 46–52. Retrieved from 10.1016/S0024-6301(96)00095-7. Kaplan, S. Robert, Norton, P. David. (2008). Mastering the Management System. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved from <https://hbr.org/2008/01/mastering-the-management-system> Kearns, Kevin P. 1992. From Comparative Advantage to Damage Control: Clarifying Strategic Issues Using SWIT Analysis. Retrieved from http://www.udel.edu/ccrs/NPMCC_2006_Materials/Karen_Curtis/Kearns_article.pdf Lewin, Eyal. (2012). National Resilience During War: Refining the Decision-Making Model. New York: Lexington Books. Oreski, Dijana. (2012). Strategic development by using SWOT – AHP. TEM Journal – Volume 1, number 4. 2012. Retrieved from https://www.academia.edu/3019214/Strategy_development_by_using_SWOT_-_AHP Pahl, Nadine, Richter Anne. (2007). SWOT Analysis – Idea, Methodology And A Practical Approach. Germany: GRIN Verlag. Porter, Michael. (1996). “What is Strategy?”. Harvard Bussines Review. Web. Retrieved from <https://hbr.org/1996/11/what-is-strategy> Porter, Michael. (1998). Competitive Advantage: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors. Print. Free Press. Speth, Christopher. (2015). SWOT Analysis. Namur: Lemaitre Publishing, 50 minutes. Valentin, E. K. (2001). SWOT Analysis from a Resource-Based View. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice. Vol 9, NO. 2. Pp 54-69. Wang, Kuang-cheng. (2015). A Process view of SWOT Analysis. Retrieved from http://journals.isss.org/index.php/proceedings51st/article/viewFile/470/242
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Management SWOT Analysis
The Coca-Cola Company, established in 1886 in Atlanta, Georgia, is the world’s leading non-alcoholic beverage enterprise with a worldwide production, marketing, and distribution of its products. The company operates in at least 200 countries, producing more than 500 brands of soft drinks. While facing stiff competition from other enterprises like PepsiCo, Coca-Cola has emerged as the world’s best in the sector through proper evaluation of the external and internal environmental factors. SWOT is a valuable tool for analysing a business’ outer and internal environment. It donates the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats an organisation encounter in its endeavours to achieve its objectives/mission, the epicentre upon which this paper’s discussions are anchored.
SWOT is an abbreviation for Strengths, Weakness, Opportunity, and Threats. Whereas strengths and weaknesses are considered as internal factors that affect a business’ operations, opportunities and threats are external factors. According to Johnson & Peppas (2003), Coca-Cola Company is affected by the four named factors as discussed below:
These are organisation qualities that propel it towards the set objectives. Coca-Cola Company, with an object of attaining globalisation milestone, has several strengths that facilitate the achievement of the latter. These include quality and favourite brand, large operation scale, and vigorous revenue growth. The company’s original brand, the Coca-Cola, is the world’s leading according to the international branding consultant firm’s rank in 2006. Moreover, the entity owns the globe’s top four soft drink brands; Fanta, Sprite, Diet Coke, and Coca-Cola. That presents it with a greater advantage over its competitors (Johnson & Peppas, 2003).
Besides, a large scale of operations is another of Coca-Cola’s strength. It operates in more than 200 nations, with approximately fifty-two billion of its products consumed daily. Consequently, the business generates more than $1.4 billion in its global operations. Again, its services are anchored around modern infrastructure comprising at least 32 high-quality manufacturing plants across the world alongside 95 bottling plants outside the United States (US). Furthermore, the entity manufactures juice and water (Johnson & Peppas, 2003). Nonetheless, the corporation has the strength to increase its revenue and meet the high market demands.
Finally, Coca-Cola Company portrays vigorous revenue growth, doubling its growth in its market areas including Latin America, Asia, and Pacific Rim. In the year 2006, the company recorded a revenue growth of 10.6% and 20.4% in Asia/Pacific Rim and Latin America respectively. Besides, its co-enterprise, the bottling company, generated 34.8% revenue the very year (Regassa & Corradino, 2011). Therefore, the business has more potential for growth than its close competitors.
These are internal factors that act as barriers, preventing an organisation from achieving its goals. Coca-Cola faces several such factors including negative publicity, declining liquidity, and slow performance in some areas. Concerning negative publicity, the company has been criticised for the technological weakness in using ingredients which are of health concern to the consumers. The brands were portrayed to harbour carbon and excess sugar (Johnson & Peppas, 2003).
Besides, the corporation has a weakness of slow performance in some regions where less of its products are supplied about the market demand. In 2006, for example, North America experienced product shortages as most of the company’s warehouses/product stores could not meet the region’s demand threshold (Johnson & Peppas, 2003). Hence, the organisation’s objective to generate more revenue is considerably affected.
Morover, declining liquidity (cash flow) also affects the company’s operations. As the entity’s annual report reflected in 2006, cash flow decline from operating activities is a notable weakness. Whereas about $6,423,000 was generated in 2005, 2006 saw a fall in revenue to $5,957,000 (7% decline) (Regassa & Corradino, 2011). Consequently, the company may be subjected to reduced financial investment rate, thus slowing down its growth and establishment.
These are regarded as issues of the external environment that an organisation can capitalise on to improve its profitability while stabilising customer loyalty and market base. Such opportunities include rapid population growth, the emergence of bottle water, and company acquisitions. Coca-Cola, realising that acquisition of other related industries would boost its operations, has worked towards such agreements. For example, in 2006, the company acquired China’s Kerry Beverages and operated as a joint venture to manufacture and distribute its products, attracting more consumers to the region. The same approach was noted in Germany where the company used the opportunity of the acquisition of Apollinaris (Sparkling and Mineral Water Company) to reach out more consumers.
In 2010, the organisation acquired North America’s biggest bottling company, thus enhancing quality packaging to attract more customers (Johnson & Peppas, 2003). Besides, with the modern world increasingly becoming health-sensitive, Cola-Cola Company commenced the production of bottle water. Generating as high as $15.6 billion in 2006, bottle water has over the years become a pivotal revenue earner in the beverage industry (Regassa & Corradino, 2011). In the US, for instance, Coca-Cola’s bottled water, Dasani, remains among the best-selling water brands.
Lastly, population growth has also facilitated the company to increase product output for supply to the larger number of consumers. In particular, the US is recording an increasing Hispanic population with years, from 11.6 million to an estimated 60 million by 2020 (Johnson & Peppas, 2003). Consequently, the organisation is utilising that opportunity to penetrate the market, expand its base, supply more beverages and generate more potential gains.
Threats are external factors that prevent an entity from achieving its desired objectives. Coca-Cola faces threats of high competition, health issues, and dependence on bottling industries. The business’ major competitors include PepsiCo, Nestle, and Cadbury among others. Hence, the company is regularly constrained to monitor innovation, pricing, brand quality and consumer welfare in an attempt to establish the comparative advantage over its competitors (Johnson & Peppas, 2003).
Also, the organisation has limited control over the bottling companies which package its product. The partnership constraints Coca-Cola into sharing most of the revenue generated by the partner company, hence posing a serious threat to its growth (Johnson & Peppas, 2003).
The sensitive health society also threatens the company’s growth. Hence, the nature of carbonation and sweetening in Coca-Cola brands did propagate a decrease in consumption in 2005 when only $63.9 billion was generated. Such uses are associated with obesity in the United States, prompting the organisation to redefine its brands with less sugar and carbon contents as observed in Diet Coke (Johnson & Peppas, 2003).
SWOT analysis is a valuable tool for analysing a business’ external and internal environment. It donates the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats an organisation encounters in the course of its operations to achieve its objectives/mission. While environmental aspects such as strengths and weaknesses are internal, opportunities and threats are external factors that affect a company’s operations. Using Coca-Cola as a case Corporation, the paper outlines its brands, service scale, and rapid revenue growth as its strengths. Besides, weaknesses include negative publicity, slow performance, and declining liquidity. Conversely, opportunities are coined around company acquisitions, bottle water, and rapid population growth. Finally, antagonising threats include high competition, health issues and dependence on bottling companies.
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How to write a swot analysis paper, december 27, 2022.
Being a business owner means making many impossible decisions without effective instruments. SWOT analysis is an excellent tool for looking at your business aside. Business planning assumes that you, as a business owner , must control all processes and things. Thanks to a SWOT analysis paper, you can do it most effectively.
Planning, business development, finance, and more aspects of the business will be easily controlled and resolved using SWOT analysis. If you are still determining if your writing skills are enough to write an excellent SWOT analysis paper, you can delegate this activity to a proficient online paper writer .
Choose a reliable writing service that cooperates with skilled authors who can create any type of paper for business or any purpose. All you need to do is register on the site providing brief information about how you see the SWOT analysis paper. A skilled writer will create compelling work for you following your instructions. Reaching out to such services is confidential, fast, and affordable. Read on to find out how to write a SWOT analysis paper and make it flawless.
What is a SWOT analysis paper
The abbreviation of SWOT means Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Even though it may sound like a simple list of pros and cons, it is not. The main purpose of writing a SWOT analysis paper is to identify various factors that lift your business or tear it down.
Define the objectives
Start writing a SWOT analysis paper by identifying your objectives. You will need to write a table to make analyses easy-going and clear. The table must contain four main points. It would be better if you start with Strengths.
To write a compelling list of Strengths, you must answer the following questions:
- What does your business do best
- What attracts customers to your company
- What do customers like about your business
- What can your business offer that competitors cannot do well
Recall the reviews left by customers and pay attention to what made them not satisfied. Consider the feedback of employees who worked with your business or currently working on you.
In order to improve the weaknesses try to answer these questions:
- What are the resources of your business that need to be more
- What are the areas of your business that must be improved
- What are the reasons your potential customers decide to work with your competitors instead of you
As an owner, you must be genuine and realistic when you define your business’s weaknesses. Forget about optimistic expectations and look with a fresh eye on your business processes, products, and services. Remember that defining weaknesses will help you to reduce them and approve your business.
Note that it is crucial to divide weaknesses from threats. The main distinction between them is that weaknesses are internal factors you can improve inside your business. In other words, you can control weaknesses. Threats, instead, are external factors that you can hardly control.
It is crucial to start defining opportunities only after you are clear about your business weaknesses and strengths.
Answer the following questions regarding opportunities:
- Look at the market you’re working at and define the current trends, also trying to predict future trends in the business
- What are the trends you can use to grow your business
- Can you grow your business by partnering with a reliable company or an entrepreneur
- Consider whether there are any opportunities to get investments or sponsorship for your business
- Think over the opportunities to grow your business by developing new products or types of services
Now you’re ready to think over the threats to your business. Here are the most crucial factors to consider:
- Is your business seasonal
- Is your business completely legal
- Doesn’t it have an unreliable cash flow process that could become a threat
- Are all your partners and suppliers reliable enough to trust them
- Are there any situations that make it impossible to grow your business, and what are these obstacles
- How do laws in your field affect your business
- Is there any opportunity for changes in this area
Structure your paper
Now you’re ready to start writing your paper. Draft your SWOT analysis paper and add it with the following sections:
Start with an introduction that will provide your main goal and set the main questions you want to answer with the help of a SWOT analysis
Proceed with writing the body. Briefly describe the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats you included in the table while preparing for writing. If there are too many items to consider and you cannot reduce any of them, use bullet points to make the section readable
The next part of the body of a SWOT analysis paper will be the analysis itself. It is the most crucial part of the paper. The goals of the analyses part are developing an effective strategy for your business and creating an action plan to achieve the set goals, and finalizing a conclusion.
Write an analysis part
When analyzing, consider all four factors together and find connections between them. Here are the most important questions to make the SWOT analysis section practical and useful:
- Think about the threats from the point of your strengths and define whether it is possible to use one of the strengths to beat a thread
- Think over the possibility of minimizing the weaknesses of your business by using its strengths
- Is there a way to eliminate the weaknesses of your business by using one of its opportunities
Generate a plan
Now that you have found connections between the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of your business, proceed with developing an action plan. It would help if you generated working ideas that can be clear and measurable to start acting immediately. After you create a list of ideas for your business, prioritize them and decide what you can do now and what is the easiest way to start improving your business. Arrange the plan of action to make it readable by using bullet points.
Application of SWOT analysis in other areas
Let’s look at the three examples of how a SWOT analysis can be used both for personal development and for the development of a company.
SWOT analysis for non-profit organizations
Non-profit organizations can use SWOT analysis to help inform about their strategic planning.
The SWOT process is a great way to understand how your organization fits into the market and to make an impact by running campaigns and fundraising initiatives. Incorporating a SWOT analysis early into the development strategy can help you make better decisions.
SWOT for business development
Business development is a crucial part of every company and being aware of the company’s strengths and weaknesses is an invaluable asset. Doing a SWOT analysis helps you identify any weaknesses that may become a problem for the company’s growth.
Personal SWOT analyses
SWOT analyses can be applied even in evaluating your personal growth. For example, if you are looking to level up in your career, creating a personal SWOT analysis can help you compare your strengths and weaknesses. That’s how you will be able to make better decisions about what areas you can improve.
The last section of the SWOT analysis paper will be a conclusion. Recall the initial purpose of writing an essay and remember the information you included in an introduction. The conclusion must provide your vision of how a business can grow. Also, it is crucial to add a conclusion with some points from an action plan. When finalizing the paper, set a deadline to complete all planned improvements.
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Master the Art of Writing an Impressive Swot Analysis Essay
Are you struggling with how to get started with your recent assignment of writing a swot analysis essay? It sure is a tough ask from students dealing with such an essay for the first time.
But you don’t have to worry as this blog post serves as a comprehensive guide to help students grasp the fundamentals of writing a SWOT analysis essay. It breaks down the intricate components, providing a step-by-step approach that simplifies understanding and implementation for learners.
As you should know. the swot analysis essay has four crucial elements, such as strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The strengths and weaknesses pertain to internal aspects, focusing on what an entity excels at and where it lacks. Opportunities and threats, on the other hand, address external factors, exploring potential avenues for growth and the challenges that may hinder progress.
This blog post is filled with amazing guidelines from professional paper writers . Hence, it’s an opportunity even for new students to master some tricks and tips for writing a good swot analysis essay.
Table of Contents
What is a Swot Analysis?
A SWOT analysis is a strategic tool used by organizations to evaluate their internal strengths and weaknesses alongside external opportunities and threats. It’s all about looking at the good and bad stuff inside the organization and the good and bad stuff outside of it, to get a clear picture of where things are at and where they could go in the future. This analysis is super helpful for coming up with plans, making smart choices, and using the good stuff to deal with any weaknesses or outside threats.
The importance of a SWOT analysis lies in its ability to provide a clear overview of an organization’s or project’s current state, facilitating better strategic planning and decision-making. By identifying strengths and weaknesses, an organization can leverage its advantages while addressing areas that require improvement. Furthermore, recognizing external opportunities allows for proactive steps to capitalize on them, while acknowledging threats helps in developing contingency plans to minimize their impact. Overall, conducting a swot analysis enables a more focused and informed approach toward achieving goals and maintaining competitiveness.
For students seeking assistance in crafting a swot analysis essay or assignment, relying on professional paper writing help can be beneficial. Expert writers can offer guidance on structuring the analysis, gathering relevant data, and ensuring a comprehensive evaluation of the subject matter.
Why Should Students Learn to Write a Swot Analysis Essay?
Learning to write a SWOT analysis essay equips students with valuable skills applicable across various fields and industries. Understanding how to conduct a SWOT analysis develops critical thinking, analytical, and decision-making abilities. It enables students to assess an organization’s or a project’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, fostering a deeper comprehension of strategic planning and evaluation.
Mastering the skill of writing a SWOT analysis essay allows students to:
Develop Analytical Skills
Analyzing internal and external factors cultivates a structured approach to problem-solving and decision-making. This skill is transferable to many scenarios beyond business settings.
Enhance Strategic Thinking
Recognizing and evaluating strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats fosters strategic thinking. It encourages students to consider multiple perspectives and anticipate potential outcomes, which is vital in making informed decisions.
Writing a SWOT analysis essay involves organizing thoughts and presenting information coherently. This skill enhances communication abilities, allowing students to convey complex ideas effectively.
Prepare for Real-world Applications
SWOT analysis is widely used in business, marketing, project management, and other fields. Acquiring proficiency in this area prepares students for future professional endeavors where strategic evaluation and planning are crucial.
Steps to Writing a Good Swot Analysis Essay
Here’s a step-by-step approach to learning how to write a swot analysis essay that even the experts working with the most experienced coursework writing service would follow.
Step 1: Choose a Subject
Select an organization, a project, a product, or a specific situation to analyze. Clearly define the scope and objectives of your analysis.
Step 2: Identify Strengths
- List the internal factors that give the subject a competitive advantage or positive attributes.
- Consider unique resources, skills, market position, or any other advantageous aspects.
Step 3: Pinpoint Weaknesses
- Evaluate internal factors that hinder the subject’s performance or pose challenges.
- Identify areas for improvement such as lack of resources, inefficient processes, or any other internal limitations.
Step 4: Explore Opportunities
- Analyze external factors that could positively impact the subject.
- Look for emerging trends, market shifts, technological advancements, or any other external opportunities that can be leveraged.
Step 5: Assess Threats
- Identify external factors that could potentially harm the subject’s success.
- Consider competition, economic factors, regulatory changes, or any other external threats that could negatively impact the subject.
Step 6: Organize the Information
Create a structured format to present your analysis. This could be a table, a matrix, or a written narrative divided into sections for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
Step 7: Analyze Relationships
Explore how strengths can counteract weaknesses or how opportunities can offset threats. Highlight connections between internal and external factors.
Step 8: Provide Examples and Evidence
Support each point with specific examples, data, or anecdotes to strengthen your analysis and provide credibility to your arguments.
Step 9: Formulate Recommendations
Based on the analysis, propose strategies or actions to capitalize on strengths, address weaknesses, exploit opportunities, and mitigate threats.
Step 10: Conclusion
Summarize the key findings of your SWOT analysis and emphasize the significance of the insights obtained. Conclude with a clear takeaway or recommendation.
How Can Students Get Better at Writing a Swot Analysis Essay?
Students can enhance their skills in writing a SWOT analysis essay through several methods:
Engage in consistent practice by analyzing various subjects using the SWOT framework. This repetition hones analytical skills and strengthens the ability to identify relevant factors.
Review a well-written swot analysis paper example or report to understand the structure, language, and depth of analysis. Analyze how to present a swot analysis and how to conclude it well. Going through examples will also allow you to understand the swot analysis format.
Gather Comprehensive Information
Ensure a thorough understanding of the subject being analyzed. Gather data from reliable sources to support each point in the analysis, enhancing its credibility.
Share your SWOT analysis drafts with peers, instructors, or mentors. Constructive feedback helps identify areas for improvement and enhances the quality of the analysis.
Utilize academic resources, online materials, textbooks, and guidance from professionals or writing centers to grasp different approaches to conducting and presenting SWOT analyses.
Critical Thinking Development
Practice critical thinking by challenging assumptions, considering alternative perspectives, and evaluating the significance of each factor within the analysis.
Refinement through Revision
Revise and refine the analysis multiple times, focusing on clarity, coherence, and depth. Each revision contributes to a more polished and comprehensive SWOT analysis.
Apply Real-life Scenarios
Practice applying the SWOT framework to real-life situations or current events. This helps in understanding the practical applications of the analysis beyond theoretical knowledge.
Keep abreast of industry trends, market changes, and relevant developments to conduct a more accurate and up-to-date SWOT analysis.
Allocate sufficient time for each phase of the analysis, from research to drafting and revising. Effective time management ensures a more thorough and well-constructed SWOT analysis.
In this blog post, we’ve focused on a systematic approach to learn the process of crafting a compelling SWOT analysis essay for students. We wanted to make it easier for students to write a good swot analysis essay, so we broke it down into clear steps. Our goal was to give them a complete guide that covers everything they need to know. We want students to see how important it is to understand both their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as the opportunities and threats in the outside world. Our approach is all about teaching them the skills they need to make smart decisions and plan strategically.
This guide gives students a step-by-step way to write a SWOT analysis essay. First, you have to choose a topic and figure out what the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats are. Then, the guide helps you analyze and organize your info. It’s important to connect what’s happening inside and outside the topic when making recommendations. By the end, you’ll have a well-rounded and smart analysis.
For students seeking additional support and guidance in crafting their SWOT analysis essays, our essay writing service provides a valuable resource, enhancing their understanding and proficiency in SWOT analysis writing.
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Home — Essay Samples — Business — Swot Analysis — Strategic Management: SWOT Analysis
Strategic Management: Swot Analysis
- Categories: Swot Analysis
About this sample
Words: 792 |
Published: Jan 30, 2024
Words: 792 | Pages: 2 | 4 min read
Table of contents
Definition and explanation of swot analysis, importance of conducting a swot analysis, steps to conduct a swot analysis, limitations and criticisms of swot analysis, case studies: successful implementation of swot analysis.
- McKinsey & Company. (n.d.). Making strengths productive and focusing on priorities. McKinsey & Company. https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/strategy-and-corporate-finance/our-insights/making-strengths-productive-and-focusing-on-priorities
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Home / Essay Samples / Business / Entrepreneurship / Swot Analysis
Swot Analysis Essay Examples
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