In this task I will be discussing a very important subject of today’s world of business which is internet marketing. To start off my task, I am going to give a general idea of history of the internet, general functions it can perform and how the internet has generally changed the society in many different ways and aspects. The history of establishing the internet originally goes back to 1950s and that’s when it first came on the scene, no one ever thought of the possibility that this project of internet would go quite far with the time. Nowadays, there’s no one that doesn’t depend on internet/computer usage.
We’d clearly see that most of the important daily processes and work are most likely to be done through the use of the internet; there would be no such big popularity for computers in our today’s society if it wasn’t for the internet. The 1970s was the period when networks were interlinked, 1982 is the date when worldwide network was established and 1995 can be pointed at as the year when internet was widely commercialised. The internet functions in many different areas and it’s always useful and helpful to everyone in order to accomplish their different needs. For example, internet services such as E-mail provides a great mean of communication, not only between businesses (B2B) but also its very useful between businesses and customers (B2C) as well and customers to customers’ (C2C) communications too.
The Internet is also considered to be the most common, advantageous and fastest source of gathering information, for instance the services that the internet presents such as the World Wide Web (WWW) holds tremendous amount of information, much of which is easily accessible and available 24 hours per day. Also, another use of internet’s wide services is that you can process payments through it very easily and smoothly; there are so many advantages of online payments/transactions which the internet’s service provides. Some of these advantages include businesses earning more by enabling customers globally to make their own purchases at any time of day or night, which basically means that an online store-front is open for shoppers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year.
Also, online banking services provided by a lot of banks is considered to be hugely cost effective, that’s because banks don’t need to have too many personnel or clerical staff around to help getting the banking transactions done. Example of B2B: the internet is very useful in B2B operations generally, for instance a company like H&M are cooperated with the Royal Mail for the purpose of delivering the goods to customers and that requires H&M to be in consistent interaction with the Royal Mail.
The internet has made it a lot easier for H&M to interact with the Royal Mail and track the items they sent and the orders they receive from their different warehouses across several countries. Example of C2C: there are many examples for how easy the internet has made it for C2C operations and interaction, the example for this would be the service that Facebook and other communication websites provide like Twitter and that service is basically the accessibility to all people to communicate and interact so this interaction can involve customers messaging each others to enquire about products and goods.
Now I’m going to relate the marketing mix to internet marketing and how it developed into the extended marketing mix. This will be done by taking each element of the marketing mix, describing how the internet has affected them.
Extended Marketing Mix:
This marketing mix is a tool which marketers use to describe their marketing strategy. It is constructed of the original 4P’s and it expands the number of manageable variables from the four in the original marketing mix model to seven.
there are some products/services that wouldn’t exist without the internet, for instance the service that Skype and Yahoo Messenger provides which includes the ability to make free computer-to-computer calls and the utter cheap calls from computer to phones and mobile phones globally. These services/products are obviously not tangible which means that they’re nonphysical sort of services unlike services such as personal training for instance. Place (non physical boundaries):
The internet in itself is considered to be the biggest non-tangible place for communication where most people from all over the world get the chance to communicate and interact. This is widely and commonly used by individuals through websites such as Facebook, Twitter etc. also virtual tours that are web-based accessible gives better experience of getting to discover places that users would generally be unable to interact with, this can be done through Google Earth, Google Maps for instance. Price:
Disintermediation is a term that basically defines trading directly without needing any sort of mediation. This word is used to describe many internet-based businesses such as eBay and Amazon, these businesses offer products directly to customers online rather than going through traditional retail channels. By doing so, companies and businesses can sell their products a lot cheaper and faster as well because the goods would be directly delivered to customers without no involvement from the middlemen. It is believed that the internet will transform the way products are bought and sold, and disintermediation is the motivating force behind this revolution.
Promotion is basically the method by which businesses communicate with customers. By promoting, customers get to make a decision to purchase a product or service. This can be done through the use of internet by nearly most of the online-based companies such as eBay and Amazon, this is called e-mail promotion, eBay and Amazon in particular can reach and target their customer needs and send them matching offers to what they’re interested in through their online marketplace which helps both companies to reach new customers and promote and advertise very widely. This also gives the ability for businesses to spot what their customers’ different needs are and by doing so they can offer them specific products matching their specific needs.
Cookies are very helpful on promoting for businesses as well; cookies are basically bits of information associated with the accounts of online market customers’ and shoppers such as on eBay and Amazon, they are normally saved on customers’ computers to make their online shopping experience quicker and easier. Cookies are used by eBay for instance to recognise customers when they sign in to their website for the purpose of remembering their preferences , and by doing so, eBay and Amazon are able to send their customers the offers they’re most likely to be looking to and the products and goods they’re interested in.
It’s very vital and crucial for any business to have the right people/staff in order to provide sufficient service to the customers. For example, the admin team behind FAQs, forums with other customers. I would say that it’s impossible to close a sales deal without the interaction with customers. Also, the business blogs which are a corporate tool for communicating with customers are very helpful in terms of sharing knowledge and expertise with all the customers.
These blogs basically aims at sweeping the business community in a smart way of sharing information about the business online, they’re really an example of an excellent method to share a company’s expertise, build additional web traffic, and connect with potential customers. It’s fundamental for any online-based business to anticipate and understand their customer needs that’s why understanding customers’ profiles in terms of their demographic, psychographic, economic and usage-based segmentation is vital to businesses; in order to achieve that, marketers must get serious about matching their site strategies to the needs of their target customer market segments.
Using the internet to do shopping, online banking, and other different types of practices and operations made it a lot easier for businesses as well as different types of people. In our modern world, the internet has grown its popularity and become one of the important methods in linking between businesses and customers as well. One role of internet in business is also the ecommerce websites and online payment solutions that allow people to shop online from the comfort of their homes. Also, another thing the internet has also provided is online banking which has made it a lot easier for people involved in banking activities to manage their accounts, pay bills, and manage their bank accounts generally.
In terms of Physical Evidence, the internet has provided lots of services that allow the users of it to have access to different types of media resources by which they can gain knowledge about a specific product/service. For example, if someone is thinking of buying a new mobile, they can have access to lots of video reviews of it online in different websites and places. Also the internet has made price comparison service very profitable, that’s because the number of online shopper is increasing daily and the internet has made it at ease for them to compare prices between different online marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay etc.