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33 Types of Competition

 , updated on June 29, 2023
Competition is the process of winning business in a crowded market. This is a fundamental force of economics that makes things more efficient, higher quality and cheaper. Without it, economic and technological progress would slow or stop. The following are basic types of competition.

Price

Price is perhaps the most common form of competition as products that fail to stand out in the market can only compete on price.

Promotion

Ads and other types of promotion that help products to stand out as recognizable, high quality or unique. In many cases, an advertisement does nothing but associate a product with a positive emotion or idea.

Niche

Serving a small market with unique preferences and needs.

Positioning

Developing products that fit a unique slot on the market such as the only black, unsweetened organic coffee beverage on the shelves of convenience stores.

Location

Convenient locations. In some cases, prime locations such as luxury shopping areas also help as they can make a brand seem luxurious.

Sales

Skilled salespeople.

Technology

Superior technology in areas such as products, operations or marketing.

Cost

The ability to produce at the lowest cost. In some industries, cost is the only competitive advantage possible as price is set by the market and customers see no difference between products.

Features

Products with superior features such as an unusually safe car.

Customer Experience

An overall experience that customers prefer such as a restaurant with a pleasant ambiance, tasty food and diligent staff.

Values

Values that customers identify with such as sustainability.

Innovation

Inventive thinking that leaps beyond the current state of the art.

Risk

The ability to navigate risk more successfully than the competition.

Figure Of Merit

Competing on a measurable aspect of a product that customers value such as the efficiency of solar panels.

Time to Market

Being the first to market with an anticipated product or feature.

Sustainability

Products that don't harm the environment over their full lifecycle.

Distribution

Advantages in getting the product to customers such as strong sales partners.

Customization

Allowing customers to customize products and services.

Reputation

In many industries, reputation is a primary competitive factor. For example, people want investment advice from reputable sources.

Social Status

Social signals such as a fashion designer who has plenty of celebrity friends and clients.

Scarcity

Offering something nobody else can. For example, a railway with a monopoly.

Speed

The ability to execute a service quickly.

Experience

A list of accomplishments such as a consultancy with an established history with major clients.

Scale

The ability to produce at scale generally lowers unit cost and allows a firm to serve large markets and customers.

Scope

Offering a broad range of products that compliment each other in some way.

Art & Design

Intangible qualities that capture the imagination of customers such as aesthetics.

Time & Place

Being in the right place at the right time such as an ice cream vendor at a parade on a hot day.

Impermanence

Producing things that feel once in a lifetime such as music festivals that are never the same twice.

Quality

Products, services and experiences that are superior in the eyes of customers such as a camera that is impossible to break or dessert with a remarkably soft texture.

Relationships

Personal or brand relationships with customers.

Legacy

An interesting history associated with a firm that gives it a strong presence in a market.

Storytelling

Communicating your value in a compelling way using storytelling techniques.

Awareness

Customers tend to prefer products they have heard about and may avoid the unknown.

Vision

A firm that paints an inspiring picture of its future or the future in general.
Overview: Competition
Type
Definition
The process of winning business in a crowded market.
Related Concepts

Competition

This is the complete list of articles we have written about competition.
Captive Market
Competitive Environment
Competitive Factors
Competitive Parity
Competitive Pressure
Competitive Threat
Competitor
Cost Competition
Disadvantage
Fair Competition
Greed Is Good
Growth
Imperfect Competition
Market Change
Market Economy
Mergers
Meritocracy
Monopoly
Oligopoly
Outrun The Bear
Perfect Competition
Substitute Good
More ...
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Meritocracy

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Marketing Economics

A reasonably comprehensive guide to marketing economics.

Bliss Point

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Mere Exposure Effect

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Market Saturation

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Switching Costs

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Price Discrimination

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Price War

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Price Economics

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Penetration Pricing

A definition of penetration pricing with examples.

Variable Pricing

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Value Pricing

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