Concept And Meaning Of On-line Marketing

The on-line marketing is conducted through interactive on-line computer systems. The on-line system links buyers with sellers electronically. There are two types of online marketing channels; commercial on-line marketing and the internet marketing.

1. Commercial On-line Marketing

Commercial online offers on-line information and marketing services to subscribers on the payment of a monthly fee. These services provide information, news, entertainment, shopping services, dialogue access, and e-mail services. On-line subscribers can order a variety of products and services electronically from a variety of sources listed in the commercial on-line service sites. Customers can do on-line banking, make investments, reserve airline tickets, or book hotels. There are unlimited possibilities of on-line marketing. Amazon.com, Yahoo.com, the two most popular sites are examples of commercial on-line marketing.

2. Internet Marketing

The internet is gaining popularity in recent years as an important direct marketing channel. The internet is a vast and ever growing global web of computer networks. It connects most of the computer users around the world. Computer users around the world can obtain and share information on any topic, product or service using internet. The application of user friendly World Wide Web (www) browser software (Netscape Navigator, Microsoft Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox etc.) has made the surfing very easy. The use of internet for e-marketing is practiced at four levels:

i. Business to consumer
Business firms sell a variety of goods directly to consumers over the internet. The most frequently sold products are books, music, computer software, air tickets, personal computer peripherals, clothing, home videos, hotel reservations, toys, flowers and consumer electronics.

ii. Business to business
Use of websites targeted at business buyers is more than those targeted at consumers. Internet has changed the structure of the supplier-customer relationship. There are online B2B auction sites, spot exchanges, and product catalogs that facilitate business transactions.

iii. Consumer to consumer
The chat rooms allow a very large number of consumers to exchange information, share experience with products or services and buy or sell products through a mutually beneficial transaction. The e-mail which functions as a digital post office has enhanced the level of consumer to consumer communication. Consumers of a specific product or service have come together and formed their own websites for sharing information and experiences. Consumers create enhanced level of product information and exert considerable buying influence through 'word or web'.

iv. Consumer to business
The internet has also facilitated to establish communication link between the consumers and the company. Consumers can access websites of the company that allows entering a call-me-button that connects to a company employee ready to listen to the consumers' comments, complaints and suggestions. Consumers can also communicate with the company using the e-mail services.

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