Internet Marketing - Advantages and Disadvantages
Everyone seems to be jumping on the internet marketing bandwagon lately.
In the race to get their business online, many successful businesses
forget to ask themselves some tough questions about what they are doing,
what their expectations are and what their plan is to meet those
The internet can be a powerful tool that can put you on solid footing
with bigger companies. On the other hand, the other companies may have
more money to pay for advertising. Here are a couple of things to keep in
mind as you analyze your internet marketing strategy.
Advantage of Internet Marketing
- your store is open, 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week. Further, your
customers are worldwide in reach, and can shop anytime that they want to
- the cost of spreading your message is next to nothing. Emailing your
subscription base is more oftne cheaper than sending a letter through the
- updating your subscribers can be done almost instantly through email.
Visitors to your website can get up to the minute information on each
visit. If you are having a sale, your customers can start shopping at the
discounted prices literally as soon as they open their email
- if you have an information sensitive business, such as a law firm,
newspaper or online magazine, you can deliver your products directly to
your customers without having to use a courier
Disadvantages of Internet Marketing
- online marketing is not free. The cost of software, hardware, wed site
design, maintenance of your site, online distribution costs and of
course, time, all must be factored into the cost of providing your
service or product.
- slightly over 50% of households shop online. While that number will
continue to grow, you are reaching less than two out of three households.
- the internet is still regarded as a source of information gathering for
the majority of your customers. Of the number of visitors to your site,
the vast majority of visitors who are motivated to buy will do so in
person. Many people prefer the live interaction when they buy. If you
have a small business with one location, this may deter customers from
- easier to have outdated information on your site, thus timing of
updates is critical
- there is no replacement for good old fashioned customer service. The
majority of internet marketers lack customer service and inquiry response
programs. As a result, many online visitors to your site will already
have painted your site as poor service before they have even contacted
you. The majority of websites also have poor navigation, which makes it
difficult for your visitor to find what they are looking for. Many sites
were created with a marketing view, not a customer service point of view.
- is your site secure? Does your customer know this? There are many
incorrect stereotypes about the security of the internet out there. As a
result, many of your visitors will not want to use their credit card to
make a purchase. The fear of having their credit card info stolen is a
clear and present danger in the minds of your visitors
- there is a lot of competition for your product already out there. By
the time your visitor finds you, they have already been clicking many
links. Unless they can find what they are looking for quickly, they are
- many web visitors expect something for free. What do you have to offer
There are many other pros and cons of internet marketing. Its important
for you to consider each when creating your internet marketing strategy.
Each of the disadvantages can be overcome, but only if you view the
customer experience from the eyes of your customer, not as an internet
Northern Source offers web design services for small businesses. You'll
find more helpful hints at http://www.northernsource.com
Christopher Smith has been creating web sites for small businesses for
over 7 years. In addition to providing deisgn and consultation services,
Christopher also provides tips on search engine optimization, internet
marketing and traffic generation.