E-Business Alberta | The Alberta E-Future Centre blog
E-Business Alberta | The Alberta E-Future Centre blog

 

The Internet: Changing The Way Sales Are Made.

The Internet has changed the way sales are made by giving consumers access to information. Many consumers now research mid and high level involvement products on the Internet before they purchase them. As a small business owner if you understand how consumers make purchases you can be more effective in making sales.

High involvement products are products that are expensive in comparison to your wealth and could have a high negative impact (risk) on your life if the purchase does not meet your needs. Therefore, for high involvement products you are prepared to spend considerable time researching them and expend high levels of energy searching for the best one. Low involvement (convenience) products are products that are bought frequently and have minimal impact (risk) on your life if the product does not meet your needs; therefore it requires minimal thought to make the purchase. Lastly there are mid involvement products, they fall in between high and low involvement products. There is no specific point where one involvement category ends and one begins but rather is based on an individual’s wealth. As an example, an average consumer would find a home or automobile a high involvement purchase but for an extremely wealthy individual a home may be a low involvement purchase.

The Internet provides consumers with specifications on products, professional and consumer reviews. As well the internet offers the ease of finding all of these sources without leaving your home, no pressure salesperson and allows the consumers time to absorb the information you research.

All of the aforementioned factors have changed the way mid and high involvement products are sold. Consumers may order the product online, never setting foot into a store. Consumers, like me, that still feel the need to go to the store to make a purchase are better educated. The sales representative role has changed as many consumers enter stores knowing which product they desire. If the person has not yet decided what product they want, the salesperson has the advantage of dealing with a well educated consumer which makes their job easier. Even if the consumer has not chosen a specific model or brand they have like formed opinions of brands and models they refuse to purchase.

Jeremy Cato (2006). “Web-savvy buyers are changing car industry“. The Globe and Mail’s article retrieved February 16, 2006, has a great specific example using the car industry.

Read the E-Future Centre’s info guide on Internet Marketing for more marketing techniques.

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