A social process that directs an economy's flow of good/services from producers to consumers in a way that effectively matches demand and supply and accomplishes the objectives of society.
- Phyiscal - e.g. climate change, pollution
- Political & Legal - e.g. policy making, EU, regulations
- Economic - employment, interest rates, BREXIT
- Social - demographic, culture
- Technological - e.g. bluetooth, vending machines, 3-D etc.
The forces that effect a companies ability to operate efficiently:
Regulations - political/legal force
- Intellectual Property Rights - e.g. trademarks, patents, copyright
- Compeition Law - Companies get fined for reducing consumer choice and/or increasing prices. e.g. GlaxoSmithKline fined £37.5m for creating their own monopoly
- Taxation/Pricing - e.g. the sugar tax, minmum price per unit of alcohol
- Manufacturing - product safety (under the sale of goods act, products must be fit for purpose), environmental (biodiversity, pollution, chemicals), extra safety certificates (toys, electrical products, machinery etc.)
- Advertising - ASA(Adversiting standards authority), e.g. small prints
- Consumer Law - Consumer Contract Regulations (give protection when shopping online), Consumer Credit Act (credit card purchases, loans), Data Protection Act(the right to company information about you), Consumer Protection Act 1987(right to compensation if a products causes death or injury.
- Special Products - e.g. cosmetics, children, food, pharameceutical, medical, gambling etc.