Formulating an e-commerce strategy for success
2011-01-13T10:00:39Z (GMT) by
The year 2000 saw many dot-com companies created and many existing companies going into E-commerce. However, with many companies failing, it is clear that companies need to follow a well thought out strategy for E-commerce. The main research aim was to assist companies towards a successful E-commerce strategy. This research was sponsored by NSB Retail which offers software solutions to high street retailers. Published literature on E-commerce was studied to determine success and failure factors in establishing a viable E-commerce business and lessons that can be learned from this. As a result of the studies of E-commerce company experiences a strategy formulation framework was created to help companies carry out feasibility study and form a strategy for implementing E-commerce. At the heart of this framework were twenty key questions for managers considering entering E-commerce and twelve critical success factors needed for sustained E-commerce success. This strategy formulation framework was tested by applying the initial stages in a feasibility study for an established, traditional retail company to determine whether it should move into E-commerce. The later stages of the framework were then retrospectively applied to successful and unsuccessful E-commerce companies. The case studies were also used to investigate whether traditional business and marketing theory could still be applied to an E-commerce company. To further test the concepts behind the strategy formulation framework, a series of papers were submitted to peer reviewed conferences and journals. Feedback from the reviews of these papers and from the audiences at the conferences was very positive and showed that the experiences of experts in the E-commerce field generally agreed with the findings. Investigations from the research has also revealed there is a shortage of case study material for training E-commerce workers. Three case studies used in this research were published in an MBA course book to be used by Ball State and other universities. It is concluded that this research has made a valuable contribution for companies contemplating an investment in E-commerce, and further work is identified to continue to assist companies to form a strategy for E-commerce implementation in the future.