Wednesday, October 3, 2012
How the Internet Changes the Competitive Battleground
Consumers will seek out brands that they know well. The internet gives you vastly more marketing depth as well as breadth.
That being said there is something unique to the world wide web of the internet in a basic sequence that may well be called the "hub-and-spoke strategy". This also facilitates the law of twos: A hub-and-spoke strategy is the increasingly common arrangement where a major retailer establishes relationships with other Web sites, promising them a percentage of any sales (generally 5 to 15 percent) that result from any traffic sent to the retailer by these "affiliates." It's not uncommon for a major affiliate program to have over 10,000 participating members, all of whom refer traffic to the central site. What's even more interesting is the extent to which this type of business model is proliferating: Refer-it is a site that lists credible affiliate programs for prospective members. As we go to press, it is approaching 500 distinct plans.
The Internet is already taking its place as a central tool in everyday business life. Each aspect of commerce is changing in light of the new capabilities available. The coming changes are so powerful that it is both terrifying and exciting. The first phase of Internet business has principally focused on the creation of new types of businesses: The next phase will involve the impact of these developments on brick-and-mortar businesses and on the economy as a whole.
The new capabilities that the Internet makes available for business-to-business commerce and for business-to-consumer sales will transform many industries from top to bottom. Winning companies will understand that in the emerging era success now requires new rules for action and the mastery by the organization of different types of skills.
Questions may arise on what the future will look like: "Will my business be helped or hurt?" "What should I do to survive?" Until recently, the pace of change has been so great that attempts at answering these questions were often unsatisfying.
Elements that will play a central role in how the Internet economy evolves. These elements have the potential to greatly harm our economy or to power us into prosperity for the twenty-first century. The best way to discuss these ideas is to provide two contrasting visions of the future:
The Potential Downside of Internet Growth More than any other aspect of the Internet, shopping "bots," software that searches the entire Internet for products and services based on predefined criteria (price being the most popular), have the capacity to offer great benefit to consumers while potentially bringing great harm to businesses.