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The Digital Business Kit for Retailers

Learning Outcomes

Retailers will identify the eBusiness strategies that are relevant to their business.[printfriendly]

mod-arrow eBusiness Checklist

What are eSolutions and what eModule supports learning more about them?

Selling Online
Selling goods or services  Selling goods or services online can range from the simple taking of orders via a website through to processing the order payment and delivery of the product or service. The suitability of selling online depends on the goods or services being offered and the target customer base. Retail products for consumers are often suitable for online sales through well-designed websites and a range of easily implemented and affordable payment systems are available. For other businesses with highly customisable products or small customer base, such as Business-to-Business sales, online sales may not include payment but may be satisfied with an online quotation request method.

See module/s: Selling Online

Recommended additional resource/s: eMarketing, Security, Customer Support

Purchasing Goods or Services
Purchasing goods or services  Purchasing goods or services online typically does not require any unique software or skills. However, there may be online marketplaces or clearing houses available for different types of business needs that can facilitate finding the right products or services at the best price, thus reducing business costs. Certain types of businesses with a standard list of suppliers may be able to link into supplier systems to procure goods as needed based on inventory demand.

See module/s: Selling Online

Recommended additional resource/s: eMarketing, Security, Customer Support

Website for Business
Website for business  Business websites have become a virtual necessity for every type of business. They not only provide an online presence for your business to promote who you are, but they can provide a portal for selling online, promoting your products and services, supporting customer service, and generally helping you get found by customers from around the globe.

See module: Selling Online and website building tools and reviews.

Recommended additional resource: eMarketing, Cloud, Customer Support

eMarketing  Whatever goods or services you offer, using the Internet for advertising and promotion, eMarketing can open up new markets and expand your customer base. Your website can be used directly in your advertising and promotion efforts, but other methods also exist to use the Internet for advertising and promotion.  Including linking in to online marketplaces and trade sites, reciprocal relationships with related websites, using social networking, permission marketing, and more.

See module: eMarketing

Recommended additional resource/s: Selling Online, Customer Support

Customer Service
Customer service and support  Online customer service and support can range from the basic provision of an email link to customer account access to providing live online support through text chat or even voice communication. Call center applications can be used to integrate customer support with client-ordering systems. Providing improved customer support online can improve the customer experience and retention.

See module: Customer Support

Recommended additional resource/s: Cloud, eMarketing (Social media)

Rich Media
Rich media or service creation  Rich media and service creation can provide a more valuable user experience to promote sales and to keep people coming back to your website. Creating 3-D views of products, multi-media presentations, and value-added tools, such as online-calculators or map-based services, can create website traffic and support sales activities. Some content services may be suitable for recurring sales which are based on monthly subscriptions.

See module: eMarketing

Recommended additional resource: Cloud

Supplier Communication and Coordination
Supplier communication and coordination  Basic supplier communication and coordination is facilitated through email and RSS feeds. Where established and ongoing supplier relationships exist, more sophisticated supplier communication and coordination applications may be suitable to help manage supply chains in coordination with your business or production needs. For example, supplier orders can be generated based on your system identifying parts which are required to meet production demand.

See module: Cloud

Recommended additional resource: eMarketing (vendor management), Telework – Remote work,Telework – online meetings

Staff Training and Skills Development
Staff training and skills development  The value of staff training and skill development requires little explanation. Using online training methods can make training available to more staff on a flexible basis and significantly reduce training costs by eliminating travel and productivity impacts from out-of-office training. For in-house training materials can be provided online for self-paced learning and ongoing reference.

See module: Cloud

Recommended additional resource: eMarketing (vendor management), Telework – Remote worker

Accessing Collaborative Tools
Accessing collaborative tools  Online collaborative tools allow for easy sharing of information from any location and facilitate team collaboration and communication on shared activities. Collaborative tools have the added benefit of acting as an information repository for the business and reducing the incidence of working with out-of-date information. Effective use of collaborative tools enhances organisational productivity.

See module: Cloud

Recommended additional resource: eMarketing (vendor management), Telework – Remote worker

Teleworking or telecommuting, provides the functionality for people to work remotely from home as effectively as if they are working in an office location. Effective teleworking requires a similar level of Internet access and computing capability in the home office as in the normal workplace, thus enabling the worker to operate at the same level in either environment. Teleworking enables businesses to access skilled employees outside of their local area and reduces ongoing operating costs related to office space. Teleworking is not suitable for every occupation, but research shows that Teleworkers are just as productive as their office-based counterparts.

See module: Telework

Recommended additional resource: Cloud

Social Networking
Social networking  is a relatively new phenomenon that helps people connect with each other. From a business perspective, having a presence through social networking sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, can enhance communication with your customer base and provide another avenue of feedback on products and services. Social networking can also provide another means of communication among employees.

See module: eMarketing (social media)

Recommended additional resource: Security, Customer Support

Access to Government Information
Access government information and transactions  An increasing amount of government information required for businesses is being made available online. Access to government information only requires Internet access and, in some cases, access to secure government accounts for your business. Keeping abreast of government information relevant to your business is important and online access makes this virtually immediate.

Along with access to government information, many government services are becoming available for online transactions, such as submission of application forms and payments of fees and taxes. Use of online services for government transactions saves time and costs and reduces delays compared to traditional methods.

Banking and Financial
Banking and all financial institutions provide online services for transactions and viewing of account status, updated on a daily or real time basis. Some banks provide special value-added services online specifically for businesses to facilitate bookkeeping and other accounting needs. Using online financial services saves time and allows for conducting business transactions any time, 24/7.

See module: Selling Online

Recommended additional resource: Security, Customer Support, Cloud

Electronic Document Transfer
Electronic document transfer  Most businesses need to transfer documents, whether it is internally or between customers, partners, or suppliers. While sending attachments to email is a common practice, it is not necessarily the most convenient or secure method for transferring large and important files. Other systems can provide secure sharing of large documents online. Ensuring effective and secure document transfers for mission-critical documents is essential. In addition, some suppliers and customer require that key documents be transferred through their specific systems in order to do business with them.

See module: Cloud

Recommended additional resource: Selling Online, Security, Customer Support