Internet is a very effective medium for communication. The introduction of electronic communication has greatly boosted the performances of many businesses nowadays. Despite, the high costs that are associated with establishing electronic infrastructure, electronic communication has proved as a very effective medium that has greatly boosted the performance of organizations as well as business enterprises. Electronic communication has facilitated communication greatly.
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With the help of electronic mails, instant messaging as well as face book and twitters, many business associates are now at a better position to communicate with each other more efficiently. Similarly, the existence of internet has played a great role in the process of enhancing the awareness of products, services as well as the branding process.
Many companies nowadays are using the internet to market their products, services as well as their brand in order to enhance their sales in the market. The invention of a business idea of establishing a Gift Basket Store is a superb business idea. The reason behind the establishment of the Gift Basket Store was meant to give individuals as well as business entities a facility to pass their gifts to their friend or clients. As a result of the good management of the entity, the business became very successful in the locality2.
As a result of the good performance of the business, the partners are opting to augment their operations by adopting a virtual Storefront. The establishment of the virtual Storefront will help the business to increase their market niche. This is because more customers who are not within the locality will be in a position to access its service.
In addition, the establishment of the virtual Storefront will be accompanied with greater awareness of the service when it is well promoted in the social media such as face book and twitter. Despite, the initial challenges such as high costs that will be required to transform the business from Gift Basket Store to virtual Storefront, the business will eventually overcome its financial challenge and perform exceptionally.
The transformation of the Gift Basket Store into virtual Storefront will greatly affect the manner in which the business was formerly operating. The enterprise will change the manner in which it was branding itself. As a Gift Basket Store, the enterprise mainly focused on the local market that comprised of local residents as well as local businesses.
With the transformation of its operation from being a Gift Basket Store into a virtual Storefront, the enterprise will operate in a global market and thus, it will target customers from within its locality as well as across the border. Apart from using the local media as well as posters and billboards to market its brand, the management will consider adopting other advertisement means such as the internet to market the business.
The management should use Face book and twitters for creating awareness of the enterprise. Internet marketing and particularly face book and twitters are often very cheap. Customers can be in apposition to order for the services using their cell phone1. Therefore, the business will not incur a lot of expenses in promoting its services.
Subsequently, internet marketing will help the business enterprise to reach customers from far away without undergoing considerable expenses. The enterprise will also design and launch a website that it will use to brand as well as to sell its service to distant customers. The management will require hiring a web-designer who will design, develop as well as being responsible for maintaining the business website. The website will expound on the service(s) the enterprise is offering.
In addition, it will be designed in a manner to facilitate electronic buying. The virtual Storefront will have local as well as international clients. Therefore, the website should allow international clients to pay for their services online through the use of credit cards or PayPal among others.
The website should be secured accordingly in order to avoid exposing the credit codes of their customers to potential hackers who can use their credit cards to make unwarranted purchases like it had happened to many businesses. Thus, the web-designer should make sure that he/she has included encryption software to enhance the security of the system.
By establishing the virtual Storefront, the management will have an opportunity to access consultation services from appropriate professionals online. For instance, the management will not be required to employ someone to maintain its website, instead the management will make use of the available consultancy agencies to maintain as well as update their website. This will help to do away with unnecessary expenses.
For Example, the money that could have been used to pay the Information Technology (IT) personnel as salary can be channeled to other areas such as marketing or production to enhance the performance of the enterprise. The use of consultants for maintaining as well updating the website will help the management to receive updated information about new inventions IT that can be incorporate to establish a competitive edge over their rival brands.
Similarly, the management will get appropriate chance to get relevant information on how they can manage their businesses online through virtual trainings. Another aspect that is likely to change by establishing virtual Storefront is the mode of communications. Electronic mail, instant messaging as well as chats will be the most common form of communications. The website should have a feature that allows chatting in order to enhance customer care services.
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The presence of the chat feature will help customers to receive feedback for their quires promptly in order to help them make informed buying decisions. The management should hire people that are well informed about the existing intercultural communication challenges in order to be able to market their service to foreign regions effectively 3.
Operating a virtual Storefront will entail the business extending its operation to bigger market niche. The business will serve both the local as well as far away clients that have diverse culture, tastes, values, beliefs as well as attitudes. Therefore, the business will experience a lot of challenges in operating as a virtual Storefront than when it was running as a Gift Basket Store. The challenge will result because of the resultant customer diversity.
The customer care, sales and marketing team will take some time before learning their market accordingly. This will result to challenges in marketing as well as selling the service to new regions. Similarly, the management will have a lot of challenges in using the new technology that involves extensive use of the internet in marketing as well as selling their services.
Because the enterprise will be operating in a global market, it will face more competition from other international companies that are offering the same service. Moreover, doing business over the internet will be challenging because of the insecurity associated with e-commerce.
Nevertheless, the adoption of virtual Storefront will help the business to extend its market niche to other regions that will eventually increase the sales of its services and revenue generated. The existences of stiff competition from other companies that are offering similar services will help the business enterprise to became more innovative and differentiate its service accordingly in order to establish a competitive edge in the market4.