This paper discusses electronic commerce as a favorable technology that can be incorporated into the La Donna boutique-shopping platform. The boutique online shopping platform is not up to the standard. In turn, they are facing a lot of competition from other established competitors who have successfully applied technology in their product sales. This context reveals the possible options for online services.
As an appropriate solution, it has tried to validate the importance of the boutique implementing e-commerce services. The paper has put into consideration the various kind of e-commerce and outlined the most applicable steps for the La Donna boutique current situation. Technological advancement and need to expand the customer base as the driving force to technology application in businesses.
The La Donna Company Background
La Donna is a boutique located in La Jolla in San Diego. The boutique has been operational since 2001 and has served as the heart of La Jolla village fashions. The boutique provides high quality fashioned clothes. Their customers’ base is not limited to the local market. They have extended their services to other regions around the world. The major countries that they dominate include France, Spain, Japan, and Canada.
Their fashion product includes trendy clothing lines, shoes, accessories, and jewels. They have diversified their product to cater to both gender and age fashion needs. The company’s mission statement and objectives motivate clients to select the appropriate styles among the available products. Business growth and development has been made possible by their products universal urban appeal.
Their advertisements target those members of the population who are tired of wearing consistent old brand of clothes. The La Donna boutique is the place to be if in quest of modern trendy clothes that match a fashion with class. La Donna boutique is strategically placed where many customers can have easy access to it. The business owners and entrepreneurs proudly call it the La Jolla home.
The surrounding environment and community in which the company is located provide a friendly and welcoming site to both local customers and others from far regions that have visited for trading purposes. La Donna is the place to be when in need to satisfy the individuals clothing needs (Burns, 2002).
The La Donna Company problem statement
The fashion industry is a rapidly changing area. To acquire market dominance, the key players in the sector must ensure adequate customer interaction. Market dominance can only be achieved when all the infrastructure have been put in place. The La Donna boutique lacks adequate online service system. The lack of this essential service has forced the customers to move to buy the products.
Matthews (2008), argues that online services are necessary where competition is a challenge. Clients will always tend to buy those products that they can easily access. Primary competitors selling similar products include the 15th Street boutique and the Echoes boutique. It is furthermore problematic since all these boutiques have incorporated technology in their business practices.
They have effectively utilized online services with a bid of capturing more customers. The technological development and increased competition have revolutionized modern marketing practices. La Donna Company, in recent time, has tried to incorporate technology in their sales and marketing. However, this has not been that effective. They depend on the actual feedback that they receive from the clients concerning their products.
Inadequate feedback puts them miles behind other competitors who have integrated information systems. Such boutiques and companies can create an online platform where they can interact with their customers and respond to their demands in good time.
The technology used by La Donna boutique is substandard compared to its competitors, and this has impaired its annual profit margins. Inadequate technological input in product marketing means that there is an increased operational cost of the organization (Gohary, 2010).
High-level solution: e-commerce
The current problems experienced by the boutiques calls for the incorporation of technological trends in business practices. All businesses are formed with the aim of profit generation. E-commerce is an upcoming trend that is used in commercial transactions. The transactions in this set up are done electronically on the internet. E-commerce provides trading opportunities and services.
Electronic commerce is useful in the La Donna case. It allows for the use of mobile phones, electronic wire transfer, and other data interchange. The modern electronic commerce majors on the World Wide Web as a primary cycle (Gohary, 2010). Another component such as social platforms and telephones serves as peripherals.
Benefits of solving technological problems
Capital-intensive means of production are beneficial compared to labor-intensive methods of productions or sale in terms of reducing operational costs. Use of online services by the La Donna boutique is likely to reduce the operational cost incurred in the products selling. The impact of this is indirectly going to affect customer by price reduction. Operational cost reduction leads to a price reduction.
The services of the boutique will also be improved. Interacting costs will also be lowered since communication will be via the Internet. Internet interaction with the customer will give the boutique a better chance of negotiating the initial and final price of the product. The personal contact between the client and the customer creates goodwill and trust.
The level of interaction provided by technological use allows for quick feedback from the client, thus allowing them to respond to the client’s issues in time. The customer will see e-commerce incorporation as quality improvement, and this will serve in promoting the marketing of the company’s activities. Exposure will earn the boutique better marketing positions that will enable it to withstand competition levels (Burns, 2002).
Competition and relatively obsolete technology is a challenge in many companies or organizations. La Donna boutique lacks adequate online service system. Clients will always tend to purchase those products that they can easily access and make payments. The cost of physical transport to the business location may seem too much for some clients. In such cases, they opt for other cheaper options.
La Donna depends on the actual feedback they receive from the clients concerning their products. Lack of enough feedback puts them some miles behind other competitors who readily have integrated their information systems. The opportunity provided by incorporation is aimed at putting the company on par with other organization. They are also able to provide the same or better services as the other strong competitors.
Stansfield (2004) argues that people are always curious about new technology, and the actual incorporation will be aimed at attracting even some clients whose interest may be to explore the effectiveness of the technology. The client may end up purchasing products due to impulse buying. E-commerce is an emerging and well-established trend.
The change that is going to be revealed is on business operations. Technological applications in new companies always tend to decrease the labor force that was previously employed. The individuals who were tasked with money collection may be relieved from some of their duties.
Technology reduces operational cost as time progresses. Reduced operational cost is possible by cutting down the workforce that was initially required for the project completion. E-commerce is likely to increase the chances of manipulating electronic. The software used is designed in a manner that makes it hard for human manipulation. The possible impact of this is increased client number and leveled competitions.
Electronic commerce, also known as e-commerce is an online method of doing a business activity. It entails buying and selling of product and services by the business class through electronic means, and there is minimal paper use, every datum collected is stored electronically and can be easily retrieved in case of need. The internet provides the most suitable platform for carrying out this kind of trade.
The three major subsection of electronic commerce includes the business to business abbreviated as B2B (Cisco), business to consumers abbreviated as B2C and (Amazon) and a regular consumer to consumer C2C (eBay). A new upcoming trend in electronic commerce is the extended enterprise computing. It is commonly referred to as newly emerging value chains. E-commerce allows one to sell his or her products at the doorsteps.
E-commerce has also provided for the cheapest alternative of doing business since the cost of promotion and services have been greatly reduced. The product delivery time is reduced in e-commerce because there are usually alerts to inform the clients and the business organization of the available opportunity. Development of the internet has led the business world to realize the need to use the internet as a tool in business expansion (Burns, 2002).
E-commerce allows for the creation of an international market place. Businesses were restricted to the certain geographical area, and this has however changed such that in the current system it has become borderless. Businesses now have access to clients around the globe. It has also provided for a lower telecommunication cost.
Fax and leasing telecommunication lines used by organizations are expensive compared to Internet-based communication. Examples of electronic commerce practices in modern times include the acceptance of credit cards when conducting certain online sales and generation of advertising income through online platforms. Individuals are accessing information about a certain company through the internet, among other many examples.
This channel, therefore, does not limit the applicant company to specific areas but has a wide scope and benefits to the users.
E-commerce has witnessed important stage transformation from the usual simple product promotion to allow for more client-based type; this has through the personalized relationship between the target consumer and the marketers. In product marketing and sales in a competitive market, no one can win at a price. Following each transaction, the client must always be made to feel that he has bought the commodity at a fair price (Gohary, 2010).
The business to business abbreviated as B2B (Cisco) e-commerce
B2B e-commerce refers to the online transaction involved in the buying and selling of products within an organization. In this setup, the buyers are individual customers, while the sellers are the business organizations. The system of online business usually involves a series of complex earning, product manufacturing, and planning. Most complexes are the terms of payment that are entailed, and agreement patterns that are round-the-clock.
The web-based business-to-business e-commerce includes direct selling and support to business such as the one supported by Cisco case, e-procurement where the clients can request to purchase from vendors. The other web-based B to B includes information sites. A typical characteristic of the B2B electronic e-commerce involves small market such as the chemicals.
They are long term binding. B2B is signaled by negotiations and commitments criteria between the suppliers and the manufacturer manifested by the increased number and volume sales. Knowledgeable buyers dominate B2B e-commerce (Gohary, 2010). The product suppliers and the buyers are well conversant with trading in the sector. Another character of B2B e-commerce is the high supplier’s’ expectation on the kind of service they expect.
The companies applying this kind of online business practices must be able to respond to the hand-to-hand demand of the clients. Marketing done through the B2B system is entirely online (Sheldon, & Strader, 2002).
Meaning that there is no value in designing and applying print adverts. It covers a wide geographical range. The B2B portal is tasked with providing the following service. It is a platform for business promotion, reporting business trends, classified displays, and facilitating other kinds of online presentations.
Business to consumers abbreviated as B2C and (Amazon) e-commerce
In consumer-to-consumer type of electronic commerce, the consumer sells specific products and services to another consumer. The business, in this case, usually acts as intermediaries. It means that the final customer is also the consumer in this kind of e-commerce system.
Amazon is a great example of this kind of electronic commerce. The outstanding characteristic of this kind of e-commerce is that the sales cycle is usually very short as the consumers are encouraged to buy the product of their choice immediately. The product purchases are made based on product prices. The B2B majorly focuses on retail kind of transactions (Raisch, 2001).
The B2C as per the works of Sandeep, a known analyst further divided it into five major categories. They include direct sellers, advert-based model, community-based model, and the online intermediaries. The above-listed categories cause much confusion as they mix the linked distribution strategies and sales channels to reach specific target audiences.
The intermediaries in this kind of transactions are tasked with performing brokerage activities. The brokers assemble the available services that they can avail for the willing buyers. Recent economic research based on technology application argues that the future of B2C is still bright as the kind of electronic commerce may still be in its early stages of development (Burns, 2002).
Normal consumer to consumer C2C (eBay) e-commerce
The consumer-to-consumer kind of e-commerce is also referred to as customer to customer. It entails electronically facilitated transaction between a customer and consumer to the other. This is done through the help of a third party since the two stakeholders may not be in the same locality. eBay provides the best example of this kind of transaction. In eBay, the specific client posts his or her item of sale through auction.
The role of intermediary in this kind of transaction is to watch the activity of the two parties. The C2C market provides the customers with an opportunity to interact freely with each other regardless of the geographical and other differences. This platform is different from the others in that in the traditional business practices; the client would have an established relationship with the business through interaction.
In this type, the customers can sell to other willing customers without necessarily establishing relationships. Once an individual has decided to put his or her product for auction, a small, non-refundable fee is charged for a product by the site based on the individual seller-opening bid. The transaction system used employ mainly the classified or auction system.
The products are second hand in most cases, as they are sold from one customer to the other. C2C is also the oldest of the three kinds of electronic commerce (Sheldon & Strader, 2002). The goal of this kind of e-commerce is to enable the sellers and the buyers to locate each as it is evident in the discussion.
Conclusion and recommendation
The fashion industry is a rapidly changing field. To acquire market dominance, the key players in the sector must ensure adequate customer interaction. To attain these, there is a need for the La Donna boutique to implement e-commerce technology. Use of online services by the La Donna boutique is likely to reduce the operational cost to be incurred in the products selling services.
Internet interactions with the customer will give the boutique a better chance of negotiating the actual and final price of the product. Good negotiation skills lead to increase in sales levels. An inadequate technological input in product marketing means that there are increased operational costs for the La Donna boutique.
Electronic commerce involves buying and selling of products and services by the business class through electronic means, and there is minimal paper use if any. Every datum regarding the collection is stored electronically and can be easily retrieved in case the need may arise.
E-commerce serves to benefit society through establishing connections; this has enabled individuals from developing countries to have access to products that, in other cases, could not have been available to them.
The three major subsection of electronic commerce that the La Donna boutique should consider using include the business to business abbreviated as B2B (Cisco), business to consumers abbreviated as B2C and (Amazon) and the normal consumer to consumer C2C (eBay).
The opportunity provided by incorporation is aimed at putting the company at par with other organization and being able to provide the same or better services as the other strong competitors.
High-level Project implementation and actualization
The La Donna boutique lacks adequate online service system. The project’s implementation will involve all key stakeholders. To have an online store, the boutique needs to have shopping cart software. The OS allows analyses of the aspects of e-commerce, such as tracking customer practices. To acquire market dominance, the key players in the sector must ensure adequate customer interaction through technology (Sheldon, & Strader, 2002).
To implement e-commerce technology, the boutique needs to explore it from different perspectives. The macro- environment perspective outlines how interaction technology, policy, and standards will work together to enable e-commerce. The boutiques also need to have a means of accepting online payment. This entails the boutique having a merchant account that can accept credit cards through an online payment.
Market strategy is also of importance to drive the clients to your products. The benefit of e-commerce integration into the business does not come overnight. It is thus important for the boutique to do additional research to develop its system to meet the client demands.
The diagram showing application of e- commerce in business, the bold arrows indicate the synchronization paths between databases.
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