There are a number of benefits to using the Internet as a ... medium for both ... and ... Benefits to ... this day and age of 24-7, ... are able to search the internet
There are a number of benefits to using the Internet as a marketing medium for both Consumers and Marketers. Benefits to Consumers In this day and age of 24-7, consumers are able to search the internet for goods and products at a time that suits them. More and more people are now working outside of what used to be deemed ‘normal’ working hours of 9 – 5. Not only can they use the Internet at a time to suit them, but they are also able to compare brands, prices and buy goods and services without having to face a single sales person! This enables them to make a calculated decision free from sales pitch or emotional persuasion, so their decision is more likely to be clarified and deliberated. Buying over the Internet is quick, convenient and private. There is no need to drive anywhere, fight for a parking space, or battle through crowds of other consumers all doing the same thing. And indeed because of lower overheads for companies selling on the Internet, consumers are able to benefit from lower prices as these lower costs are often passed on to the consumer in the form of discounted prices. Benefits to Businesses Wide reaching The Internet provides businesses with the means to reach prospective customers that they would not normally be able to reach so quickly and inexpensively. Opportunity to learn about customers’ needs and wants Once they have reached these customers, the Internet offers the opportunity to learn about those customers’ needs and wants by interacting with a customer and gaining valuable feedback from them. In doing so, a company is then able to better target its goods and services to those customer needs and wants. Ordinarily, conducting market research of this nature would be a costly exercise for any company and yet here is a sales medium that allows this type of market research to be built in. Reach A Wider Audience at Less Cost By marketing goods and services online, companies are able to reduce costs. Whilst there are still costs incurred in maintaining and hosting a website, they are considerably less than maintaining and renting a shop and advertising goods and services. In general terms, it is far less costly to set up a website than it would be to buy 30 seconds of commercial air time on prime time TV and yet the Internet has more viewers between the hours of 9am and 4pm than TV and Radio put together. Flexibility When a company decides to change its goods or services, it can be a costly and time consuming task whilst changing them on a website is instantaneous and far less costly. Imagine a catalogue has been printed and mailed out to a database of customers. Then imagine a company wants to add another product to that catalogue; it would then have to mail out the addition to all its customers again. It is costly for the company and inefficient for the customer. Yet, if that catalogue were an online catalogue the process would be far quicker, more simple, more customer friendly and far less costly for the company. Access to Global Markets The benefits of marketing on the Internet for small companies are immeasurable. These small companies are now able to market their goods and services globally. Before the days of the Internet, these small companies would have been unlikely to have been able to have access to global markets without spending a considerable amount of money to do so. Conclusion The Internet offers companies an inexpensive, yet effective way to reach new customers. Not only are they able to reach new customers, but they are also able to interact with them. By doing this, they are able to better understand the needs, wants and indeed, buying habits of their customers. “Online marketing can yield fantastic performance and conversion with relatively low costs compared with traditional marketing and advertising mediums.” Chris Martin Vice President of Production and Technology at Ask Jeeves (Source: Marketing Direct March 2004) The benefits of marketing on the Internet are many however; this does not mean that every company should market their goods and services on the Internet. Thought must be given to the target market and the goods and services being sold. Are your target market likely to search the Internet for your goods and services, or would they be more likely to pick up a Telephone Directory for instance? There are of course, costs involved in marketing on the Internet and they can vary vastly. For any company embarking on such a course, I would say that one of the most important factors is that you have good support from your Web Designer and Internet Marketing company, otherwise you could find yourselves left with a website that is out of date and inaccurate and that will cause more harm than good.
Nicky Nelson is the proprietor of Crystal Clear a web site marketing & consulting company based in North Wales, UK. Having spent a number of years in Sales & Marketing, her area of expertise has naturally progressed to the Web. Crystal Clear offer a range of services to enable businesses to generate better results from their web site and digital marketing.