Free «Wal-Mart: Examining Communication with Core Customers» UK Essay Sample
Wal-Mart effectively uses e-commerce in order to communicate with its core customers. Its main clients are other businesses that purchase huge amounts of products for resale purposes. E-commerce stands for electronic commerce meaning that business transactions are done online. Most importantly, it refers to trade activities that are accelerated and enabled through information technology, especially through the Internet. The company uses business to business (B2B) type of e-commerce to reach its core customers.
Wal-Mart is a good example of a successful firm that has effectively used business to business commerce in order to communicate with their key clients. The organization uses virtual B2B e-marketplaces that provides a chance for businesses to buy and sell products to each other. Most importantly, they can transfer information and engage in various vital business activities (Sparks, 2011).
History indicates that Wal-Mart executives and its experts started Walmart.com in the year 1996 in hope that it would help to reach their core customers. However, most of the clients did not use the Internet in their transactions at that time. Today, the company has insisted that any business wishing to be their supplier of products should utilize Wal-Mart EDI. This enables the company to replenish its stock directly from wholesalers as well as maintain low prices for their customers (Brodie, Winklhofer, Coviello, & Johnston, 2007). Moreover, this measure helps to reduce inventory space that leads to the increase of room on the shelves used for services display in order to communicate its products to customers.
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Therefore, clients are able to access the company either online or through stores. It is clear that business to business transactions occur whenever organizations sell their products to customers that are other businesses like it is in the case of Wal-Mart. That ensures easy integration of both online and offline customers since one can order a product on the Internet and go to the company’s store to pick it up. Wal-Mart has also incorporated an effective marketing mix that it uses to pursue all its marketing objectives. The main ones are to attract and reach the core customers across the world (Bonanno, 2010). The marketing mix of the company does not include wide and generic strategies, which can reach and attract almost all potential businesses. It mostly focuses on the e-marketplace. Therefore, making contact leads to a formal relationship that includes negotiations needed when it comes to pricing, specifications, delivery timing and quality.
Wal-Mart also utilizes online advertisements that appear as small ads on the related sites. The company has realized that it can use other websites as a way of improving customers’ experiences of using their adverts. That has been evident in recent period as Wal-Mart is sending anonymous messages to Yahoo describing user’s browsing activities. It has also become clear that Wal-Mart has been offering an affiliate system that can be found on its website. Its membership is free and enables one to earn commission if he or she refers to its customers to purchase the company’s products (Brodie et.al, 2007).
In terms of payment made by the customers after the B2B transactions, the company has developed Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) that makes it possible for the clients to pay huge amounts of money. This deters them from paying big sums using credit cards and other options that might be ineffective. The costs of placing orders through the system are minimized hence encouraging customers to use the system rather than other methods of payment. That also has reduced paper work involved between the company and its business clients (Bonanno, 2010).
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In conclusion, Wal-Mart is a good example of a business that uses effective communication strategies in order to reach its core customers. It has succeeded in the efficient use of e-commerce for its operations. That has been evident from its efficacy in the use of advertisements, payment of products by customers and supply of products. Clients can easily access online systems offered by Wal-Mart to complete their transactions. The company’s core customers are other businesses it supplies products to through B2B e-commerce.