Delivery systems for e-commerce purchases
Delivery in the goods: Internet EC allows the user to order what they want, when they want, but then they have to wait until the post man arrives. That can be okay in ordinary circumstances but if the requirement is an urgent, it will not fulfill the need of the e-customer.
The delivery system for EC purchases has to depend upon the product size, nature, emergency and the distance the product has to travel.
I. Post: The post is relatively cheap, reasonably rapid and is useful for small packets of non-perishable products, books and CD’s are the ideal products for posting. It has been said that you can sell anything online provided it will fir through a letter box.
II. Packet: Call these packets or parcels, there are a variety of organizations that provide a home delivery parcel service. Packet delivery services, are not that cheap and the next day delivery is requires, then there is a premium rate to pay.
III. Local delivery: The idea that all e-commerce can be conducted from a central warehouse with minimum overheads starts to breakdown when it comes to perishable goods. A second issue with local delivery is cost. There is no real savings to an e-commerce retailer if his business is small or restricted to a geographical area.
IV. Collect your own: On alternative to the local delivery is for the * customer to collect there own goods. The product is ordered electronically paid for online and backed by the vendor, but the customer fixed it from a local store.
The one way to not only order, what you want, when you want, but also get it when you want. That type of delivery is called as electronic delivery.
Ex: Downloading of music videos etc, but the copy right of the downloaded product is not in your name.
The final category is for those intangible products where there is no need for delivery. Ex: air tickets booked online.
Overall the issue of delivery of electronically purchased goods is somewhat problematic. Inter organizational systems transfer’s tasks to the customers and can achieve savings for the order and payment stages of the trade cycle.
There are types when the bank customer wants to know their bank balance or make an urgent payment without visiting a bank or at a non conventional time. This is highly impossible for the customers without the use of internet banking. In other words internet banking can solve the above mentioned problems. Internet banking reduces the cost of processing cash transactions and has the potential to reduce the overhead of the branch networks. Online banking allows customers to check their balances at any time of the day or night. The services offered by online banking are as follows:
ü Online balance statements giving up to the minute information.
ü Credit transfers i.e. bills can be paid on time.
ü Maintenance of standing orders and direct debits.
Even after providing internet banking still to get cash, the account holder has to leave home and visit an ATM or a branch bank. There are security problems included in online banking such as hacking a password etc and it also needs special software downloads into your computer to access internet banking. The supply chain banking, using e-banking, reduces usage of the branch networks.
SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGAMENT
SCM means having a series of rights as mentioned below
All the above right things are the part of B to B commerce framework. The approach of SCM transforms the way in which companies deal with their suppliers, partners and customers. The goal of SCM of to improve efficiency and profitability by providing new opportunities for exchanging information.
SCM is a powerful tool to exchange information so as to improve customer service by fulfilling the orders quickly and minimizing excess volume of inventory. In SCM the following are the essential ingredients:
ü Collaboration among various business partners.
ü Co-ordination for logistics for timely delivery of goods.
ü Co-operating suppliers and business parties.
ü Connectivity through network to speed up the response time.
Michael Porter’s Value Chain Model:
Micheal porter introduced this model in 1985 concerned with internal activities of the company mentioned below.
1. In bound logistics: It involves handling of goods that are bought into the company and storing them to make available in the time of operations as required.
2. Operations: Production process that can be represented on a detailed value chain analysis.
3. Outbound logistics: It involves taking the products of the company and storing them if need arises and distributing these products to the customers in a timely manner.
4. Marketing and sales: To find out the requirements of the potential customers and making them know the products and services that can be offered.
5. Service: Requirement for installation and after sale service after the transaction is completed.
The above are the primary functions; to support these primary functions there should be supporting activities mentioned as under.
A. Firm’s infrastructure: This is the bachelor of the business unit. It includes various activities like business management, accounting, finance, planning and other activities.
B. Human resources: This is another major activity to match the right people for the right job. It includes recruitment, career development, training and development of workers.
C. Technology development: Organization needs to improve the production process for being competitive. This activity contributes to the quality of the product, integrity and reliability.
D. Procurement: This activity focuses on the supplier of the materials whether the supply of quality material is regular. It involves negotiating quality supply at a reasonable place within a reasonable time.
The genuine value chain is the beginning point for constructing a specific value chain for a company. After properly identifying the component activities and linkages there-in, each element can be analyzed there-in, each element can be analyzed in terms of cost and value so as to establish the overall efficiency of value chain.
Internet advertising: The following are the important reasons for the development of internet advertising.
1. The television viewers migrated to the internet. The medial follows, acknowledging that the goal of any advertiser is to reach its target audience effectively and efficiently.
2. Ad’s can be updated any time with a minimal cost. Therefore, they are always timely.
3. Ad’s can reach very large number of potential buyers globally.
4. Online ad’s are sometimes cheaper in comparison to newspapers, TV or radio. The later are expensive since they are determined by the space occupied how many days they are shown and many national and local television stations and newspapers they are posted.
5. Web ad’s can effectively use the convenience of text, audio, graphics and animation.
6. The use of internal itself is growing rapidly.
7. Web ad’s can be interactive and targeted to special interested groups or individuals.
Advantages of internet advertising:
a) Internet advertisements are accessed on demand 24hrs a day, 365 days in a year and costs are the same regardless of audience.
b) Accessed primarily because of interest in the context, market segmentation.
c) Opportunity to create one-to-one direct marketing relationship with consumer.
d) Multimedia will increasingly create more attractive and competing ad’s.
e) Distribution costs are low, millions of consumers, can be reached at the same time.
f) Advertising and content can be updated supplemented or changed at any time and therefore always it is updated. Response and results of advertising are immediately measurable.
g) Ease of logical navigation- you click where you want and spend as much time as desired there.
Disadvantages of internet advertising:
a) No clear standards or language of measurement.
b) Immature measurement tools.
c) It makes viewers comparison difficult for media buyers.
d) Difficult to measure the size of market, therefore difficult to estimate rating, share or reach and frequency.
e) Audiences are still small in number.
Various internet advertising methods
I. Banner: It is the most commonly used form of advertising on the internet. As you surf your way through the information super highway, banners are everywhere. The file size of the image should be about 7kb to 10kb. The smaller the file size the quicker it loads. Designer of the banner pay a lot of attention to the size of the image because long downloading times may cause the viewer to become impatient, and move on before the banner is fully displayed.
II. Splash screens: It is an initial website page used to capture the user’s attention for a short time as a promotion to tell the user what kind of browser and other software they need to view the site. The advantage of this method over others is that one can create innovative multimedia effects or provide sufficient information for a delivery in one visit.
III. E-Mails: Another way to advertize on the internet is to purchase e-mail addresses and the company information to those on the list. Advantage of this approach is its low cost and the ability to reach a wide variety of targeted audience.
IV. Chat rooms: There are hundreds thousands websites having millions of chat rooms to exchange messages in the real time for participants.
A vendor frequently sponsors chat rooms. Chat capabilities can be added for free by letting software, chat vendors, post your session on their site.
Software agents are computer programs that help the user to conduct routine tasks, search and retrieve information, support decision making, and act as domain experts. Agents sense the environment and act autonomously without human intervention. This results in a significant saving of time to users. There are various types of agents, ranging from those with no software agents to learning agents, which exhibits some intelligent behavior.
Agents are used to support many tasks in EC. One of the primary reasons for using such agents is to overcome the tremendous amount of information overload. In going through the purchasing decision process described earlier, for ex: A customer must examine large numbers of alternatives, each of which is surrounded by considerable amount of information.
A search engine is a computer program that can automatically contact other network resources on the internet, search of specific information or keywords, and reports the results.
Unlike search engines, an software agent can do more than just “search and match”.
Software agent for information search and filtering:
Software agents can help to determine what to buy to satisfy a specific name and where to buy it. An agent that helps consumers decide what product best fit their requirements by narrowing down selection through a filtering process. Consumer specifies requirements and constraints and the system returns a list of products that best needs their desire.
Software agents for products and vendor finding:
Software agent helps consumer decide where to buy comparing merchant offers. A pioneering software agent for online price comparison was bargain finder. This agent was only used in online cd shopping. The agent quires the price of specific cd from a number of online vendors and returns a list of prices.
Software agent for customer services:
Several software agents enhance computer service by helping search as was shown earlier and by providing help to shoppers.
A learning agent is capable of learning individual preferences and making suggestions. An example is memory agent , developed by IBM. Memory agent uses a neural network technique called associative memory, which learns by creating a knowledge base of attributes of cases.