Relate that back to your own shopping experience. Can you recall viewing an item in a shop but actually making the purchase online? Perhaps you have seen the item on a shelf, making a mental note of the price before checking it online against other suppliers before making the final decision where to do the deal? If so, you are not on your own.
Looking at the figures, 80% of the total active online population have visited an online retailer or an ecommerce website in August. Now, not all of those visits would have resulted in a purchase. It would have been very good if it did and the current economic climate would have benefited from this, but the facts are that it just did not happen. From the 80%, 16% made a purchase.
With the .com and .co.uk is now preceding many high street brands and large supermarket names, consumers can now search, view, compare and purchase items online that are also in store. The facilities online to make these purchases have made an impact on the more traditional high street shopping or retail outlet visit.
So, what sites are we or should we be going to? Well, the most common sites that have contributed to this shift to be ‘in on’ (at home online) are EBay just ahead of Amazon, Apple, Tesco and Argos, but Amazon is catching up EBay very quickly.
The main reasons that consumers use this ‘in on’ concept is because of price (57%), which did drive EBay previously and is also fuelling Amazon currently. The online sites are open all the time (32%), which helps when you are at work or you can’t travel to the right places. If you wanted to ask in store to match the same price online, you would deal with a sales person or store employee, which is also not a liked idea (29%). These three factors, price, opening times, and in store help have converted consumers away from ‘off out’ to a ‘on in’ buyer.
Could SKYPE replace current business communication channels, including core Telemarketing activities?
SKYPE is a software facility that allows phone calls to be made over the internet. Calls can be made to mobiles and landlines (with the appropriate subscription) all over the world. Other services that SKYPE offers include instant messaging (IM) and video conferencing.
The set up that SKYPE have is unlike other Voice over IP (VOIP) services because there are no servers involved in the calls. The SKYPE software that is downloaded onto your PC or mobile device is the gateway for all its services.
Traditionally SKYPE was only accessible from a PC that has an internet connection. Time has moved on and now manufacturers have included SKYPE onto many mobile devices and computers.
Following that, SKYPE is also accessible from a WiFi area. A SKYPE app was released for download from iTunes for the Apple iPhone. This emphasis in alternative communication launched a whole series of SKYPE handsets products generically called SKYPE WiFi Phone.
With the appropriate subscription package, a SKYPE WiFi Phone and an internet connection, calls can be made to a mobile or landline anywhere in the world. In addition, if your PC has a webcam, the facility to engage in a more personal video call is available, for 2 or more people, while sending IM to invite other contacts that you have included onto your contact list in the call or conversation.
In a classic business office would SKYPE calls be useful? Would it be easier to close deals using a video call and not a traditional phone call? Could marketing information from a sample of people be more effective if they could see who they were dealing with? So, calls and video conferencing can be made from your work by using your PC, potentially saving money but also adding more value to an activity. I also include that a call between two SKYPE members is free!
SKYPE will be included onto business cards, default signatures on emails, pre-recorded voice mail boxes, website ‘contact us’ pages and company signage before we know it. Advertising a SKYPE contact is vital when trying to open doors for potential customers or new business prospects.
With this new channel online and established, the telemarketing activities and marketing campaigns may include an automated voice mail message or IM to a SKYPE audience. This message would include a return SKYPE username for the selected audience and return the message via IM or call. The benefit to the business is a new captive audience and the return IM or call from the audience would be free!
Blog Posts Calendar
- Is the Internet going to be the television replacement?
- Google to Launch Cloud-based Music Service
- Skype is in demand but not from members or users.
- You may have the content right, perfect images and a great customer journey on your site, but is it quick enough?
- 4.3.3 is available for download, now Apple can’t track you…(for as long!)