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Identify the weaknesses/threats associated with the ‘Direct to Consumer’ strategy. This should be based upon a discussion from within the academic/case literature and an analysis of P&G.

 Analyse various case studies on accessing consumers through e-Business.

Identify and analyse a variety of case studies that address the weaknesses/threats identified in Part 1. Develop a set of guiding general principles from these case studies that will underpin your solution.

Describe solution for the ‘Direct to Consumer’ strategy based upon the general principles developed in Part 2. This business plan will detail

    • Discuss the basics of your solution showing how it will address the issues discussed in the first two parts.
  • Product/Service Description. You will need to know the P&G product offerings and decide which will be provided through your solution and how the solution will do this. Consider the implications for:
    • Operations,
    • Accounting and Finance,
    • Human Resources,
    • And any other function of the business that may be impacted by this proposal.
  • For this section you will need to make use of the market databases (e.g. Mintel) available through the library.
    • What is the target market for your proposal Why this market
    • Where is the competition for your proposal coming from
    • What are the Competitive Advantages
    • What are the Barriers to Entry
    • And any other market related aspects of your proposal.

Overview of the Direct to Consumer strategy and its importance

The advent of newer technologies has helped organizations to undertake steps in order to modify their structure of availability in the market. The importance of the reforms has brought about considerable changes in the organizational structure (Combe 2012). The modifications brought about by the organization in order to cope up with the environmental changes are an important consideration for the growth and expansion of the same.

This section of the report aims at understanding and discussing the important prospects of threats faced by the company Procter and Gamble and thereby determines the risks that the organization is facing. In order to understand the market position of the company and thereby modify the policies, the company must make a note of the threats that the company is facing in regards to the competition and the actions of its competitors in the market.

The major weaknesses of the company can be enumerated in regards to the implementation of the e-commerce sites for the company. The products that are being manufactured by the company are based on the consumer’s requirements of the hygienic and sanitation products. The products that are being manufactured by Procter and Gamble are facing a threat due to the duplicity that might occur in the e-commerce sites (Wymer and Regan 2013). The substitute products also pose a serious threat to the growth of the organization. The market availability of the products of the company helps in determining the market position of the same and therefore it helps in retaining the brand loyalty. Diversification of the culture of the consumers greatly affect the demand for the products in the e-commerce sites, therefore the company also faces a threat as per the availability of the resources based on the diverse requirements of the consumers.

The organization is also facing a threat from the other brands that are manufacturing the same line of products (Huang and Benyoucef 2013). The company is taking steps in order to undermine the effects of the competitors in the market and improve their market availability. The other aspect of threat that the company is facing is their online presence.

In this era of advancements in technology, the concerned organization has not undertaken steps to make their online presence more vivid. The company is recently developing a tool in order to support the cause of their online presence, which is supposed to be helping them in retaining the market they are into. The online presence of the market is going to help the organization in keeping the consumers aware of the new products launched by the company. Moreover, the online presence of the company will help in expanding the probable scope of the company beyond the physical borders of the nation, but there are certain threats that the company must consider in making the online presence.

Threats faced by Procter and Gamble related to e-commerce and the competition

The different approaches taken by the companies are based on the requirements of the consumers that the company determines as its target market. The involvement of the companies in the e-business is the growing trend in the market, which facilitates the growth and expansion of the companies. There are certain weaknesses too that the companies must consider and modify before undertaking the idea of formulating an e-commerce site, or even implementing the idea on the business. This section of the report aims at understanding the problems that are being faced by the companies that are into e-business at the time of implementation of the idea. The different concepts that are being implemented by the companies in undertaking the processes of the e-business is based on the requirements of the organization. The requirements can be varied in a number of ways depending on the situations that are being faced by the companies at the time of the inception and the range and type of commodities that are being presented by the organization.

The difference in the approach of the companies facilitates the varied discrepancies that might affect the growth of the company (Vivek, Beatty and Morgan 2012). The problem that is being faced by many companies in implementing the idea of the e-commerce is based on the returns or the refunds that is being made by the consumers after purchasing a commodity. The basic criterion that meets the objective of the buyers is based on the contingencies that arise out of the preferences and the requirements of the consumer. The consumer might buy a product hoping to derive the maximum utility from that particular product, but a change in the mentality of the consumer might result to a declining rate of demand for the product. another major challenge faced by the developer of e-commerce trade is based on the consumer issues or delivering the after sale services in order to make sure that the consumer is satisfied with the product and the service that is being delivered (Cheung and Thadani 2012).

The major challenge faced by a e-commerce business operation is based on the criteria of the after sale services that is being provided by the company, after making a desirable sale. It has been noted, that most of the companies, like the Amazon or the Flipkart are unable to provide the consumer with a n abundance of the after sale services which might result to a decline in the brand loyalty (Chaffey 2015). The customers who have suffered on the basis of the expected ,services for the products, and equivalently harassed on the same, does not opt for the  product the second time. It affects the growth of the company. Amazon and Flipkart is perhaps considered among the best e-commerce sites, that provide a wide range of products to the customers. The customers literally can opt for any other service or products, after being harassed. On the other hand, the businesses that offer a limited range of products suffer the loss of the decline in the brand loyalty (Huang and Benyoucef 2013).

Challenges faced by companies in implementing e-Business

Lack of integration is the important consideration that every e-commerce company must undertake in order to collaborate the efforts to suit the purpose of the organization. Integration helps the company in achieving the common goal of the organization. Integration is an important issue that most of the e-commerce companies have faced in the latest modifications that has being undertaken by the businesses in this modernized era of technological advancements. Companies like Alibaba and Taobaorave have been reported several times as per the lack of integration among the internal and the external departments, which have resulted to the rise of grave issues (Boone and Kurtz 2013).

The important consideration that is being undertaken by the company is based on the principles that have been enumerated from the case studies that have been studied above. In order to make use of the strategic measures the company is required to facilitate the decisions that might help them in avoiding the situations of the discrepancies that are being faced by the previous companies (Vivek, Beatty and Morgan 2012). In order to make use of the principles the organization must make a market survey and thereby undertake training among the staff members of both the internal and the external departments in order to facilitate the integration function within the teams. On the other hand, the organization must also make use of the feedback from the side of the consumers in order to understand the requirements of the consumer and make use of the feedback in order to understand the modifications that the organization must bring about in the product or the service. The organization must create a feedback section or a personalized texts section and incorporate them on the portal to make sure that the feedback from the consumer is received.

3.1 The concept of the business

The most important consideration that must be undertaken by the company is based on the perspective of the consumers who will be making use of the products that is being offered by the organization (Mohapatra 2013). In order to avoid the discrepancies that might arise out in the process of online marketing, the organization must take certain steps. The step that must be taken by the organization is being discussed in the earlier section of the report. The training helps in making the people aware of the job role and thereby helps them in identifying their individual goals and the organization goals as well. On the other hand, the inclusion of the personalized texts in handling the demands of the consumers is an important phenomenon, which helps in making the necessary modifications by the organization in its line of product or the services.

Guiding principles for a solution based on case studies of successful e-Business operations

The most important consideration that every company has is the satisfaction of the consumers (Huang and Benyoucef 2013). The inclusion of the feedback in the portals helps the organization in understanding the important modifications that the organization must bring in their line of products to meet the expectations of the consumers and the target market. The concept of the business is to deliver the commodities and the services at the doorstep of the consumers in order to exclude the intervention of the middlemen. The exclusion of the intermediaries from the business processes help the organization in cutting down the cost incurred, which in turn makes it more preferable by the consumers over the commodities that are present in the retail markets.

The concerned company for this report is into the manufacturing of the sanitation and hygiene materials (Huang and Benyoucef 2013). The specialty of the goods is based on the healthcare and hygiene goods that are being manufactured by the organization. The target market for the company is huge, as the organization manufactures all sorts of personal care and hygiene products that is being used by millions of users around the world (Chen and Holsapple 2012). The important consideration that must be taken by the organization is based on the resources and the decisions of the organization must be taken after a thorough planning based on the consumer requirements.

The safe and hygiene products must be made available through the ‘direct to consumer’, or more simply the e-business, as the hygiene product face a tough competition in the market from the substitute products. In order to make use of the consumer’s confidence in the organization or the brand, the organization must make use of online marketing in order to avoid the market competition (Vivek, Beatty and Morgan 2012). Although the global competitors broaden the competition through the e-commerce sites, then again the scope of the business expands beyond the borders of the nation. as the organization excels in the production of the self care products and services, the organization must take steps in order to include the line of products in the e-commerce sites to accelerate the sales of the commodity (Carayannis, Sindakis and Walter 2015).

The change of the company’s operation from the retailing to the e-commerce is a transition that might change the organizational structure largely. The most important consideration that must be undertaken by the organization while undertaking the transition is to determine the importance of the change and how the change is going to affect the organizational structure and to what extent. The change of the operation is based on the transition from the retail trade to the online trade. In retail trade a lot of intermediaries are involved in order to make a smooth advancement in the business process (Chesbrough 2012). On the other hand, the online marketing involves the direct communication with the consumers and adhering to the requirements of the consumers relating to the commodities and services that are being delivered.  The change in the operations of the organization brings in changes in the organizational structure which affects the smooth functioning of the organization.

The finance and accounts team of the organization provides the organization with the valuable information on the availability of the resources and the probable fits and starts of the business. It provides the company with the valuable info on the company’s profits, the revenue, and the investments done by the organization in order to make them aware of the return on investments, which helps in the growth of the company (Lafley and Charan 2014). The company’s transition to the e-commerce is an important factor that will be affecting the finance and the accounting of the organization. the company’s indulgence in the online marketing procedures have helped the organization in reducing the cost of distribution of the commodities. E-commerce helps in eradicating the intermediaries, which helps in cutting off cost from the commodities, thus making the commodity more affordable to the target consumers. It helps in making the market of the commodities more competitive (Ferraro and Briody 2017).

The human resource of the company is also affected by the company’s decision of transforming to an e-commerce field. The human resource extracts a large amount of capital from the company (GalbRaith 2014). The salary of the employees and the people involved in the production as well as the distribution process of the organization is being minimized. The company’s decision of undertaking the change in the process of its operation brings about a change in the organizational structure therefore the company’s need of the increasing human resource is being revised.  

Target market

The target market of the organization is basically the elite and conscious people who are concerned about the healthcare and the hygiene. The concerned company manufactures its line of products based on the requirements of the consumers (Cavusgil et al. 2014). Although the organization is facing its expansion globally, the major target consumers can be enumerated as the people from the middle class to the elite class who are concerned with the proper healthcare.  The type of commodities manufactured by the organization determines the target market of this organization.

The competition that is being faced by the company in the market is from the functioning of Johnson and Johnson and the Unilever. They are brands that are into the manufacturing of the same kind of goods that is being produced by the concerned company (Ferraro and Briody 2017).

The most important concept that supports the aim of the company in achieving an advantage over the other competitors is based on the criteria of outnumbering the competitors on the basis of the new innovation sin the products and the strategies that is being undertaken by the organization (Turban et al. 2017).

The concerned company for this report faces a barrier to enter the podium of the online marketing and thereby in maintaining their online presence. The limiting factor is based on actions of the existing companies and their influence on the consumers (Voola et al. 2012). In order to understand the barriers and enumerate solutions to cope up, the company must make use of a detailed analysis of the preference of the consumers and the market in which their competitors are dwelling (Payaud 2014).

References 

Boone, L.E. and Kurtz, D.L., 2013. Contemporary marketing. Cengage learning.

Carayannis, E.G., Sindakis, S. and Walter, C., 2015. Business model innovation as lever of organizational sustainability. The Journal of Technology Transfer, 40(1), pp.85-104.

Cavusgil, S.T., Knight, G., Riesenberger, J.R., Rammal, H.G. and Rose, E.L., 2014. International business. Pearson Australia.

Chaffey, D., 2015. Digital business and E-commerce management. Pearson Education Limited.

Chen, L. and Holsapple, C., 2012. E-business adoption research: Analysis and structure.

Chesbrough, H., 2012. Open innovation: Where we've been and where we're going. Research-Technology Management, 55(4), pp.20-27.

Cheung, C.M. and Thadani, D.R., 2012. The impact of electronic word-of-mouth communication: A literature analysis and integrative model. Decision support systems, 54(1), pp.461-470.

Combe, C., 2012. Introduction to E-business. Routledge.

Ferraro, G.P. and Briody, E.K., 2017. The cultural dimension of global business. Taylor & Francis.

Ferraro, G.P. and Briody, E.K., 2017. The cultural dimension of global business. Taylor & Francis.

GalbRaith, J.R., 2014. Organizational design challenges resulting from big data. Browser Download This Paper.

Huang, Z. and Benyoucef, M., 2013. From e-commerce to social commerce: A close look at design features. Electronic Commerce Research and Applications, 12(4), pp.246-259.

Lafley, A.G. and Charan, R., 2014. P&G's innovation culture. Strategy+ Business.

Mohapatra, S., 2013. E-commerce Strategy. In E-Commerce Strategy (pp. 155-171). Springer US.

Payaud, M.A., 2014. Marketing strategies at the bottom of the pyramid: Examples from Nestle, Danone, and Procter & Gamble. Global Business and Organizational Excellence, 33(2), pp.51-63.

Strauss, J., 2016. E-marketing. Routledge.

Turban, E., Outland, J., King, D., Lee, J.K., Liang, T.P. and Turban, D.C., 2017. Electronic Commerce 2018: A Managerial and Social Networks Perspective. Springer.

Vivek, S.D., Beatty, S.E. and Morgan, R.M., 2012. Customer engagement: Exploring customer relationships beyond purchase. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 20(2), pp.122-146.

Voola, R., Casimir, G., Carlson, J. and Agnihotri, M.A., 2012. The effects of market orientation, technological opportunism, and e-business adoption on performance: A moderated mediation analysis. Australasian Marketing Journal (AMJ), 20(2), pp.136-146.

Wymer, S. and Regan, E., 2013. Influential factors in the adoption and use of e-business and e-commerce information technology (EEIT) by small and medium businesses. E-Commerce for Organizational Development and Competitive Advantage, 58.

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