Business Strategy vs. Corporate Strategy: What’s the Difference?

Basically, a business strategy focuses on how a company plans to compete in a market, while a corporate strategy focuses on the markets it wants to enter and the businesses it wants to compete with.

There are three levels of strategy in any business organization: corporate strategy, business strategy, and functional strategy. Only when all three levels of strategy are carefully considered will a business be successful. The corporate and business levels of strategy will be covered in this article because they are frequently conflated.

Corporate strategy is essentially created to give the company guidance for achieving their long-term goals. According to the organization’s goals and the range of its activities, a corporate strategy is developed. Additionally, it takes into account the nature of the business by looking at its operating environment, positioning in the market, and level of competition it faces. Corporate strategy focuses on creating a variety of business units that will enable it to succeed as a whole in order to respond to the question, “What businesses or industries should we be working in?”

The majority of large-scale businesses typically have a number of departments or business units that are dispersed throughout the various industries and markets that the organization has chosen to operate in. A product division or any other profit center may be a strategic business unit, and its goals may differ from those of the organization’s other business units. Business strategy is a form of strategy created at this level, and its goal is to specify how an organization intends to achieve its objectives in a specific business unit.

Corporate level strategies are the next level down from business level strategies. These strategies focus on more specific areas of the organization. At this level, three tactics are typically used: differentiation, cost leadership, and focus. These business-level strategies are meant to give the organization a competitive edge. Managers of business units or divisions use the strategies created at the business level to find solutions to issues they encounter in their daily activities.

Corporate vs. Business Strategy

What is a corporate strategy?

An organization can use a corporate strategy to help determine what markets to enter and how to do so. When businesses want to diversify or enter a new market, they frequently use corporate strategies. This strategy guides a companys growth. A corporate strategy typically includes:

Corporate strategies are used by upper management and business stakeholders to choose which markets to enter and how to aquire businesses that will make the company successful.

What is a business strategy?

A business strategy is a plan for luring clients, securing their patronage, and generating revenue from the sale of goods or services. It is intended to aid a business in remaining competitive in its market. Organizations create business strategies to reach specific goals.

An outline or summary of a business strategy might include the following steps:

A business strategy should outline a company’s or company unit’s competitive advantages and explain how to capitalize on them. It outlines the steps required to accomplish desired goals so that hiring and resource decisions can be made by managers. Managers can adjust their business strategy depending on market demand.

Differences between business strategy vs. corporate strategy

Business and corporate-level strategies differ primarily in their objectives. A corporate strategy concentrates on business growth and profits, whereas a business strategy concentrates on competing in the market. Corporate strategies function at a higher level than business strategies. However, since their choices have an impact on the entire business plan and reflect the organizations’ shared objectives, managers should create business strategies with the overall corporate strategy in mind.

The following are some additional significant distinctions between corporate and business strategies:


Department heads and other mid-level managers use business strategies to accomplish objectives and goals within their divisions or departments. This strategy is useful for a variety of company units. Executives and other senior managers use corporate strategies to advance their organizations in line with their goals. This strategy applies to the entire organization.

Sometimes small businesses develop corporate strategies to direct their expansion and achieve their objectives until they are large enough to require business strategies. Large-scale businesses require business strategies to assist their various units and departments in achieving their unique objectives. This is due to the possibility that each department may have unique objectives that call for a unique strategy for its goods or services.


While corporate strategies are typically long term, business strategies are typically short term. To address ongoing or routine operational problems and achieve measurable goals, such as generating a certain amount of new business or revenue, managers develop business strategies. These tactics are helpful for assisting teams in achieving transient and ever-changing goals that enable them to compete in a particular market niche.

Corporate strategists create long-term objectives like profit maximization and comprehensive problems affecting the entire company like expansion and diversification. Typically, a corporate strategy is long-term and built around a constant company vision. The CEO or stakeholders may evaluate the efficacy of this strategy over a long period of time.


The goals of business and corporate strategies differ when it comes to achieving and evaluating success. A business strategy focuses on:

A corporate strategy focuses on:

Basically, a corporate strategy focuses on the markets it wants to enter and the businesses it wants to compete with, whereas a business strategy focuses on how a company plans to compete in a market.


Managers can use business strategies to:

Company leaders can use corporate strategies to:


While success and profitability for the company are the primary benefits of any business or corporate strategy, each strategy has unique advantages. The benefits of creating a business strategy include:

The benefits of creating a corporate strategy include:


What is the difference between corporate strategy business strategy and functional strategy?

Corporate strategy is your company’s big-picture goals. If your company is large enough to have distinct departments, each one ought to have a business plan based on the corporate objectives. The functional strategy is a thorough roadmap for achieving the business objectives.

What is business and corporate level strategy?

Business-level tactics are employed to build a customer base and make a profit on a product sale. On the other hand, corporate-level strategy is utilized when determining which business units to sell and buy as well as how to integrate operations and identify synergies between them.

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