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# Feedback for my AWA Essay :)

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Intern
Joined: 11 Mar 2018
Posts: 2
Feedback for my AWA Essay :)  [#permalink]

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11 Mar 2018, 12:27
Hello,

This is my first attempt at an AWA. The 30 minutes definitely came and went quicker than I anticipated. However, I stuck to the prompt and stopped sharply at the 30 minute mark. I would LOVE for feedback and possibly a potential 1-6 score. Please do not be shy. Constructive criticism is very appreciated. Thank you!!

The argument: "On average, middle-aged consumers devote 39% of their retail expenditure to department store products and services, while for younger consumers the average is only 25%. Since the number of middle-aged people will increase dramatically within the next decade, department stores can expect retail sales to increase significantly during that period. Furthermore, to take advantage of the trend, these stores should begin to replace some of those products intended to attract the young consumer with products intended to attract the middle-aged consumer."

My essay: "The following argument is flawed for a number of reasons. Primarily the argument is based on the assumptions that middle-aged shopping habits are consistent across all types of department stores, across all department store locations, and across current and future middle-aged consumers of different generations.

While the argument notes on average 39% of middle-aged retail expenditure is made at department stores, it fails to mention the type of department store. For instance, a hardware department store could make up 35% of middle-aged consumption while a clothing department store could make up the less than 1% of middle-aged shopping habits. In fact, the majority of clothing department store consumption could actually come from younger consumers. If this is the case, then clothing department stores should not undergo the same strategies as the hardware department store. If the argument mentioned that middle-aged shopping habits were consistent amongst all different types of department stores, then it would be easier to make the conclusion that all department stores should target the shopping preferences of middle-aged consumers.

The argument also fails to mention the shopping habits of middle-aged consumers in various locations. In some locations, department stores might be widely used because there is a limited number of other retail stores. In these locations, middle-aged consumers might spend significantly more than 39% of their discretionary income at department stores. However, in other locations, there could be a greater variety of suitable retail options, and middle-aged consumption at department stores could be much less than 39%. Therefore, it would not be as beneficial for department stores located in these areas to restructure their business model to accommodate middle-aged consumers. The argument would greatly benefit from a breakout of middle-aged consumption per location. If middle-aged consumption in all locations were at or near 39% of consumption, then the argument’s claim that all department stores should adjust the business model to accommodate middle-aged consumers would be strengthened.

Finally, the argument states that it would behoove department stores to continuously focus on products that would benefit middle-aged consumers. This statement, however, does not take into account the potential of consumer preference shift that comes with each generation. Products targeted for middle-aged people of Generation X will generally not have the same appeal as products targeted for the future middle-aged Millennial Generation. For instance, Millennial Generations could have a preference for online shopping, whereas the current generation of middle-aged consumers could have a preference for in-store shopping. Therefore, it would not benefit department stores to undergo sweeping changes to its business model that will likely be continuously evolving. If there argument were to include a contingency plan for future generations, it would strengthen the argument.

In conclusion, the argument does not provide enough information to support its claim that all department stores should shift its target focus towards the shopping habits of middle-aged consumers. If the argument were to include a detailed breakout of department store type and location, and if the argument provided consideration for the generational shifts that will occur with future middle-aged consumers, then it would be easier to support the argument’s conclusion. As it stands, the argument lacks key information and poses too many questions to make it completely sound."
Current Student
Joined: 28 May 2014
Posts: 515
GMAT 1: 730 Q49 V41
Re: Feedback for my AWA Essay :)  [#permalink]

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12 Mar 2018, 07:52
You can evaluate yourself here:
http://www.gmatawa.com/
_________________
Re: Feedback for my AWA Essay :)   [#permalink] 12 Mar 2018, 07:52
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# Feedback for my AWA Essay :)

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