A Cross-Industry Review of B2B Critical Success Factors

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A cross-industry review of B2B critical success factors
Riyad Eid Myfanwy Trueman and Abdel Moneim Ahmed

Introduction
In recent years business-to-business international Internet marketing (B2B IIM) has received widespread attention. Avlonitis and Karayanni (2000), Hamill and Gregory (1997), Hoffman et al. (1999), Porter (2001) and Quelch and Klein (1996) conducted in-depth studies to understand those factors that are needed to enhance B2B IIM implementation. Various articles, empirical research, and secondary case studies on B2B, Internet, international marketing, and information technology were studied. The findings of these studies identified 21 factors that have a direct impact on successful implementation of the B2B IIM. These factors were classified into five categories: marketing strategy, web site, global dimension, internal and external related factors. Definitions, techniques and discussion on these factors are described in the following sections. Further discussion on each category is also underpinned.

The authors Riyad Eid, Myfanwy Trueman and Abdel Moneim Ahmed are all based at the Bradford University School of Management, Bradford, UK. Keywords International marketing, Success, Business-to-business marketing, Internet Abstract Business-to-business international Internet marketing (B2B IIM) has emerged as one of the key drivers in sustaining an organisation’s competitive advantage. However, market entry and communication via the Internet have affected the dynamics and traditional process in B2B commerce. Difficulties resulting from these new trends have been cited in the literature. Research into identifying what are the critical success factors for global market entry is rare. This research presents a comprehensive review in this field. The study identified 21 critical success factors applicable to most of the B2B IIM. These factors were classified into five categories: marketing strategy, Web site, global, internal and external related factors. The significance, importance and implications for each category are discussed and then recommendations are made. Electronic access The research register for this journal is available at http://www.emeraldinsight.com/researchregisters The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available at http://www.emeraldinsight.com/1066-2243.htm Internet Research: Electronic Networking Applications and Policy Volume 12 . Number 2 . 2002 . pp. 110±123 # MCB UP Limited . ISSN 1066-2243 DOI 10.1108/10662240210422495

Critical success factors definitions
Digman (1990), Butler and Fitzgerald (1999) and Guynes and Vanecek (1996) defined critical factors for success as the areas or functions where things must go right to ensure successful competitive performance for an organisation. Oakland (1995) links these factors to what an organisation must accomplish to achieve its mission. Kanji and Tambi (1999) stated that for these factors to be more effective, they have to represent managerial areas, which require continual attention to lead to high performance. This research attempts to identify and discuss in the following sections those areas or functions through the secondary case studies and reviewing literature. This will guide an organisation while implementing B2B IIM.

Available techniques
Leidecker and Bruno (1984) proposed several techniques for identifying the critical success factors (CSFs). These included environment scanning, industry structure analysis, 110

A cross-industry review of B2B critical success factors Riyad Eid, Myfanwy Trueman and Abdel Moneim Ahmed

Internet Research: Electronic Networking Applications and Policy Volume 12 . Number 2 . 2002 . 110±123

industrial expert’ s opinions, competitors’ analysis, best practice analysis, assessment of the company’ s internal feeling or judgement, and gathered data of profit impact of market strategy (PIMS): Environmental scanning. This technique is used to identify the economical, political...
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