Dell has immense challenges and opportunities ahead of its move to carry on 50% of its business over the Internet. There are several ways in which Dell should go about with carrying out its business in order to transfer a greater percentage of their total business to the online segment. One of the most important steps to be ensured when trying to move towards e-business is to ensure that there are enough IT resources and web assets to support, manage and maintain an IT portal.
An online business requires marketing as its most important component. The higher the number of customers reaching Dell’s website, the higher will be the number of purchases made online. Since the focus of Dell is to move towards Internet business to a high percentage, there should be adequate time, resources and budgets allocated towards the development of appropriate marketing, web and advertising strategies. For example, Dell could use web-viral marketing instead of the traditional spamming.
Since Dell has a history of providing out-of-the-box concepts and solutions, the online portal of Dell should be strengthened with more options: providing similar services and capabilities to customers purchasing online similar to what conventional customers enjoy. On a conclusive note, Dell should devise strong marketing and promotion campaigns on the Internet at subsidized costs and include online support to assist customers in learning about their purchases, which would be a normal process for a customer visiting any Dell franchise to make a computer purchase.
Dell has historically maintained its competitive edge on prices and costing. (Rangun & Bell, March 26, 1999) When a company relying too much on pricing finds its margins getting smaller, there is no option than to raise its prices. In doing so, it begins to loose out on its previous competitive edge which leave sit looking for a new strategy to compete with other firms. Dell is already in a situation where its prices are bound to go up due to the initial investments in its e-segment.
To match this investment, Dell will unwillingly have to raise its prices. To counter this price increase there are several strategies that can be adopted so as to maintain an edge over its competitors. At Dell, perhaps the best ones include after-sales service, customer relationship extension, feedback and product innovation. Traditionally, Dell machines and laptops have no distinction for being unique; this perhaps can now be the product strategy for Dell in a bid to increase its online business to 50%.
Product innovation i. e. constant evolution of existing products throught the inclusion of unique features should constitute Dell’s unique selling proposition (USP). Not only that, Del should provide the option to its online customers to order customized machines acording to their needs. Consultancy is perhaps one of the most growing industries at the moment: providing it in the form of advising customers as to the best machine that suits their purpose would be an effective strategy to boost more traffic towards their website and eventually boost up sales.
Extending the relationship with an online customer may very weel translate into great profits: online customers should be allowed to register with identifications which can be used for subsequent purchases. This will ensure personalized service to customers and will result in increased speed of transaction processing (since staff at Dell will have access to historical information about the customer easily).