Internet marketing is an activity of carrying out business transactions using computer networks that are selling and buying goods and services through the utilization of the concept of internet applications. It follows the basic principles of traditional commerce but in this case, buyers and sellers swap or exchange commodities through the internet for money. This has offered maximum convenience to buyers and sellers alike. Buyers and sellers in this form of internet marketing get the opportunity to compare prices, quality of the products, and other factors before deciding to undertake any business transaction. With internet marketing sourcing of goods and services internationally has become simple and has increased inter-reliance between countries in the supply of goods and services. With globalization being the form of contemporary business, internet marketing has taken the center stage in marketing activities and research indicate that it has yielded the best results in terms of increase in profit levels as a result of increased market share by organizations through the use of the internet (Mark, 2001).
Internet marketing is believed to have started in the 1960s where there was the development of the Electronic Data Interchange this was directed towards conducting business information and electronic transactions. This evolution took place in various stages whereby in the year 1984 the ASC X12, transformed itself to the Mosaic browser which allowed better and efficient access to electronic commerce browsers. This internet marketing was enhanced in the 20th century when ICT became the medium of communication, learning, education, and marketing. Internet marketing became fully utilized in the last decade especially given the fact that most sectors went online including online banking and online sourcing of products among others. (Yajnik and Towley, 2006).
Objectives of the Study
The main objective of this project is to examine the evolution and the importance of the internet and its use as a marketing tool in a business organization, the study will also look at how the management of internet marketing should be implemented.
Benefits of conducting the research
This research will apply to all those organizations who wish to attract and retain internet marketing relationships that can accomplish stated objectives efficiently. It will provide focus and insight to the management of internet marketing as well as portraying to the management the importance of motivated and satisfied consumers of the organization.
Limitations of the study
Because this is an exploratory study it will mean that more time will be required to carry out the research in order to find the relevant information that will reflect the issue of internet marketing as a key force to achieving results in an organization. Also, another limitation is the availability of funds because the study will require the researcher to reach a wider population by interviewing many respondents.
The Evolution of the Internet
The history of internet marketing can be traced back to the 1960s when the Electronic Data Interchange was developed. It was specifically tailored to conduct business information and electronic transactions the use of the internet evolved through various steps and in 1984 through the ASC X12, it transformed itself to the Mosaic browser which allowed better and efficient access to electronic commerce browsers. The kind of internet marketing got a boost in the 20th century when ICT became the medium of communication, learning, education, and marketing. Internet marketing became fully utilized in the last decade especially given the fact that most sectors went online including online banking and online sourcing of products among others. (Parries, and Jeffay, 2002).
Internet was first developed by the United States Department of Defence in the early 1960s. Since then, it is believed that there are almost over three hundred thousand networks which are spread all over the nations of the world. It has been the most exciting development in the world of computers today. Internet refers to an international network of computers worldwide with many people accessing the data available. By ensuring that computers in an organization are networked with the internet, the company stands to benefit a lot. Besides accessing files on other computers within the organization, one can run software located on all the other computers enabled. This, therefore, makes communication among the employees in the organization effective and efficient. (Parries, and Jeffay, 2002).
Since nearly every household in the world, today has a computer and most of them are currently connected to the internet, it makes an opportunity for the marketers to reach a high percentage of the target consumers which boosts their marketing activities.
The Use of the Internet as a Marketing Tool
For any business, the main goal is to increase its market share, increase relative industry growth, enhance competitiveness, and enhance its survival and growth in the ever-changing business environment. In the contemporary business world, information technology (IT) particularly the use of internet marketing has increasingly become essential to explore new markets and to widen the firm’s financial bases. More advancement of information technology is being witnessed, which is providing better solutions to ever upcoming challenges in marketing activities. Internet marketing remains an important feature in building organizational value and especially enhancing marketing activities. IT and particularly the utilization of internet marketing concepts could change product nature, their processes, change industries and companies, and even affect the competition itself.
Advantages of Internet Marketing
The use of internet marketing has a lot of advantages and that is the reason why many have opted to transact business using the internet mainly referred to as an online business. The use of the internet provides a direct link between the two businesses; it is possible that any party can update their e-catalog anytime they want especially if a new product has been launched in the market or when prices are to be adjusted. This will result in the reduction of expenses which could be incurred if the traditional methods were used. It also provides extensive search capabilities to the businesses in order to keep a record of any threat in the market (King, Lee, and Vineland, 2004).
With the use of internet marketing, there is usually an unlimited marketplace that businesses can achieve. In addition, there is the effect of an extended customer base that will ensure that the business will meet other customers electronically. The internet for example gives customers the opportunity to stay in their offices and perform their transactions. It really does not matter the distances, time, or resources availability, it provides a global outlook. Internet marketing is one of the cheapest ways of doing business. Business-to-business communication costs are reduced greatly when the two companies adopt this concept as a medium of transaction.
Connection is a broader term used to define the linking of information via cyberspace. Internet interface connection offers the most powerful feature-packed website hosting as in the case of multiple server platforms. These platforms include; Sun UNIX, Linux, or Microsoft-NT solutions which are used to specify a database. Proper interface connectivity especially for Amazon will provide the following benefits; automatic update programs are available to ensure that the company does not lack behind in technology and any other current update softwares in the market. Also, use of Unzip applications for the facilitation of decompressing and downloading files for security reasons. This program will also assist in screening material sent to the network of this organization and all its addresses (Yajnik and Towley, 2006).
Managers of different organizations need to ensure good planning by availing resources in terms of finances and skilled employees who can provide technological advancement. It is important for the organizational structures of the company to be well organized to create an enabling environment for the company to succeed in internet marketing. Leadership in any company should be taken seriously, good leaders inspire their juniors and also ensure that they take the lead in embracing new technology in the company. Through this, the company will be able to attain its objective; of using internet marketing to improve the company sales. The management should use control to come with measures that can ensure that the company benefits a lot from internet marketing. Though internet marketing is full of advantages to the company, without proper control from the management, the company will not be able to realize the full benefits of this concept (Philip, 1996).
It has been the most exciting development in the world of computers today. Internet refers to an international network of computers worldwide with many people accessing the data available. By ensuring that computers in an organization are networked with the internet, the company stands to benefit a lot. Besides accessing files on other computers within the organization, one can run software located on all the other computers enabled. This, therefore, makes communication among the employees in the organization effective and efficient. (Yajnik and Towley, 2006)
This study necessitates the researcher to identify the main advantages of internet marketing. The researcher will mainly concentrate on the issue concerning internet marketing and how best it can be applied by organizations in their attempt to boost their profitability levels. Given that this study is exploratory research it will be based on; desired activities and time-based plans, research questions, selection of sources and types of information required, an outline of procedures for every research activity to be carried out and also it was based on the framework that specified the relationships among the samples identified for this research purpose. (Saunders, Lewis, and Thornhill, 2007)
The target sample will be mainly those organizations that are involved in the day-to-day operations of internet marketing. However, some middle-level and top managers will be considered and given an opportunity too to air their views. A total of five respondents will be identified and questionnaires administered to them. However, the administering of questionnaires as a tool of measurement will be based on the willingness of the respondents to adhere to the instructions thus in the process answer the questions to their best knowledge.
Techniques for Data Collection
Since a sample of the population will be identified the researcher will utilize both open and closed questionnaires to collect the required information from the respondents that will be selected from the sample identified. This method is considered and found to be effective and efficient to the researcher since he will only drop the questionnaires to the respondents and collected them at a later date. The reason for choosing both open and closed questionnaires to be administered is that it will give the respondents an opportunity to answer freely to a set of questionnaires that will be administered to them during the study. (Saunders, Lewis, and Thornhill, 2007).
Open and Closed Questionnaires
The researcher will utilize both the following closed and open questionnaires in order to achieve the best possible findings of internet marketing and the best ways of its management particularly in this case of the newspaper organization. The following are the questionnaires to be administered:
Please tick the appropriate answer for each question provided or indicate your answer in the spaces provided:
What is Internet Marketing?
When did the evolution of this type of marketing occur?
Mention the advantage of using the internet as a tool of marketing?
- Cheap labor
- Fast communication
How do you carry out the management of Internet Marketing?
What are the behaviors of customers you target through internet marketing?
Do you think the future of internet marketing will make Organizations Successful?
Internet marketing has become the way of doing business in this modern world and business activities have been made simple and interesting with the use of this concept. It has gained roots because of its simplicity and convenience in the ordinary course of businesses and it has been utilized by both Small-Medium Enterprises (SME’s) and Multi-national Corporations (MNC’s). Industry players agree the internet marketing is going to continue to grow (King, Lee, and Vineland, 2004).
Today cheap labor and availability of raw materials are not enough in world competition, technology advancement that leads to the production of high-quality products, which are more reliable and flexibly on the market is the key issue of competition. Internet marketing through the utilization of modern Informational Technologies is an important aspect in any organization; it helps in product advancement, better service delivery, and lowers the cost of production. In today’s economy, internet marketing continues to be very relevant to companies as they struggle to invent cheaper and more efficient to the market. The management of the company needs to familiarize itself with this concept of internet marketing in order to be a motivating force for the organizations’ prosperity. The future for internet marketing is considered to be bright, as studies show more and more organizations are turning to internet marketing particularly through the utilization of the internet as a way of carrying out business transactions. (Yajnik and Towley, 2006).
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