How Internet changed the retail buying process

Topics: History of the Internet, Cost, Broadband Internet access Pages: 7 (1817 words) Published: May 15, 2014

Internet has grown rapidly in the past few years, the use of the Internet in business-to-business has changed the way in retail buying process. In general, every buyer will go through process which include Identification of Need, Product criteria required, Selection of Supplier, Order Specification and Performance review. With the grown in the use of internet, retail buying process are greatly influenced. One of the greatest potential of the internet is the way how communication and collaboration changed between buyers and suppliers. As there are very few boundaries on the internet, anyone can share informations much more rapidly and effectively through various use in social media tools. Second, changed the way how buyers source for their suppliers. Third, how the buyers now can reduce costs on behalf of the organization. However, there are also some factors that are not influence by the growth of the internet. These factors include the product and color trends, product-life-cycle, seasonal products and duration in delivery.


Five stages of a retail buying process:

Identification of Need
In general, a buyer first need to establish a consumers needs in order to supply that category of consumers with products they desire. The need in the market needs to be determine first. For example, if there is a need for guitars that needs to be established. The buyer needs to determine what types of guitar would best suite their target customer, then the process of getting the guitar to the store. Following by the identification of product demand from both existing customers and non-customer. In the past with no internet; no email, the buyers need to get informations regarding products and customers through the use of phone-calls, fax machine or feedback forms from the store managers. Also, a buyer needs to visit the sales floor so as to understanding the consumer buying behavior by interacting with the in-store shoppers. By doing these, can be time-consuming as the buyer needs to travel all the way down to the store and time taken to interact with in-store shoppers. Moreover, costs like transportation and phone bills are involved, possibility of engage calls as a buyer is working with several suppliers and other departments, such as sales and marketing or financial. However with the support of internet, communications and sharing of informations via email can be done at one go much more efficient and effectively. Furthermore, communication barriers are break down through the use of social media tools such as facebook, twitter, blogging and company sites enable customers to feedback and share informations much more globally and rapidly. As such, the buyers can easily gain access to all the information needed. By doing this, not only being able to provide the sufficient volume in the store but, satisfying market demands as well as strengthening its market positioning. On the other hand, there are a few factors that have not been influence by the grown of the internet. These factors include product and color trends, seasonal products, and location of the store as these helps to anticipate the upcoming consumer demands.

Product criteria required
After the process in identification of need, generally buyers will move into the development of the identified need or want into a retail product designed to satisfy customers. With the internet, customers now have greater sources due to the limitless choices to satisfy their need. One need can be satisfied by different solutions. An example will be, a buyer or customer looking for neck solution can now easily find many different solutions from heat therapy products to energy field magnetic products. Where in the past, he or she can only dependent on traditional mass media such as radio, television ads and newspaper. If not, paying a visit to a pharmacy. However, visiting the pharmacy may not find the solution that he or she desires. At the same time,...
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