Analysis using 7Cs
1. Choose an industry of interest where several companies have developed online e-business strategies with public B2C web sites. This industry might include traditional companies operating as bricks-and-clicks firms, as well as dot-com companies.
2. After you have looked at several public websites for companies in this industry, select 3 or 4 companies you think will provide an interesting comparison about how companies are leveraging the internet today. (Hint: you might want to include one company with a website you think is significantly inferior to at least one other company site.)
3. Analyze each of the websites in terms of the overall look and feel Â of the site from the perspective of the targeted consumer, as well as how well each website has addressed the 7Cs in the model developed by Rayport and Jaworski (described at the end of Chapter 7 in the textbook).
4. Write up your findings, including the following content: Introduce the industry you selected and the websites you selected.Â Include the reasons why you chose this industry and these particular companies, and include the URL for each site.
Describe and also compare the ways that these companiesâ€™ websites address the 7Cs and any other characteristics you wish to emphasize. For example:
How easy was it to identify the content or services available?
How easy was it to navigate between pages?
Did the site download easily?
Was the use of graphics and animation appropriate for the target audience?
Were the linking capabilities of the Web exploited?
Was there a sense of â€œcommunityâ€Â?
Based on your analyses, provide some recommendations for the company whose website you considered to be the weakest. Be sure your ideas are appropriate for the industry you selected, and take into account whether companies in this industry traditionally have sold directly to end-consumers or not and using what channels (e.g., catalog, physical store, or via a distributor).
5. Use outside resources to provide current statistics and forecasts for the industry you selected, as well as any information about B2B applications that the companies may be using. Be sure to provide full citations to all third-party sources, including a â€œlast date accessedâ€Â for all references to a URL.
The travel industry around the world is growing at a steep rate and the travel industry of Saudi Arabia is not behind. In addition to this, the online travel companies are helping the industry to grow. The customers can sit at their home and carry out an entire research about the travel packages and the places of visit before booking any package (De Mooij, 2013). According to a study that was carried out in the year 2013, the online travel industry was expected to cross $1.9 billion in the year 2014 (Gazette, 2013). The online travel industry nearly doubled since the year 2011 when the value was around $1 billion (Tnooz, 2013).
The chairman of council of economic and development reforms, Saudi Arabia, Muhammed Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud implemented the vision 2030 where the travel industry plays a vital role. Makka and Medina sees a huge footfall in Saudi Arabia. The following graph shows the increase in the number of tourists in Saudi Arabia:
Figure 1: The rise in the footfall of the tourists in Saudi Arabia
Source: (Business Wolf, 2016)
The above graph is another proof that the number of footfalls have risen steeply for the tourism industry. The number of footfalls that was 3325000 in the year 1995 has risen to 18259000 in the year 2014. The use of the online sites has also risen and the competition among the sites has deepened. A study of the sites is necessary to understand the features incorporated in them to help the customers in various ways.
To study the online travel industry of Saudi Arabia, the following companies are being chosen for the present report:
- Ace Travel (URL: https://www.ace-travel.com/atnew/index.html)
- Zamil Travel (URL: https://zamiltravel.com/site/index)
- Attar Travel (URL: https://www.attartravel.com/)
- Global Travel Solutions (URL: https://gts.travel/GtsTravel.aspx)
The comparisons between the online travel industries will help the readers to understand the features that the travelling industry use and the level of competition among the online travel sites. While the names of the websites were searched, the names of the above-mentioned sites were the most popular ones than the other websites present.
The appearances of the websites are commendable. Out of the four websites, none of them can be termed weak or strong as far as the functionality and the beauty of the website are concerned. Out of the four websites, Global Travel Solutions can be preferred by the customers in the first look as along with the travel packages, it gives information regarding currency exchange, world atlas, weather forecast and time converter- all four are some of the important requirements while travelling at international locations (Czinkota & Ronkainen, 2013).
The use of graphics and the pictures are used appropriately in all the four websites. The place to search the travel packages and hotel are mentioned in the 1st page of the website and hence the users would not have any problem handling the websites. In this context, Zamil Travel is stronger than others as it shows the latest deal in the home page along with the price of the package (Zamiltravel.com, 2016). However, the biggest drawback of Ace Travel is that it does not let the users book hotels with their site. The users can book only flights by using the site of Ace Travel (Ace-travel.com, 2016). Some of the hotel deals can be found but that the choice is limited for the users. The ease of B2B business can be availed at Global Travel Solutions and Ace Travel. The corporate companies can contact the company for arranging events, booking hotels and flights for the employees of the organization. However, as Ace Travel is not well-acquainted with hotel bookings, hence, global travel solution will be stronger than Ace Travel.
Out of the four websites, Global Travel Solutions and Ace Travel have the capability to do commercial transactions like converting the currencies. All the four websites can help the customers booking the tickets and the hotels online but Global Travel Solutions and Ace Travel stand out in the crowd for helping the users with the currency converter. Even though Attar Travel opens other external links, yet the products sold in the links are out of context and hence, success of the commercial transactions with the use of the external links is under question mark (Shani & Chalasani, 2013).
Customization of the website in only available for Attar Travels as the user can change the language of the website (Attartravel.com, 2016). However, as the option is only available for language, the customization might not help the company to get business from the international locations. Customizations of the travel packages are available at Ace Travel. The section for customization in the bottom of the website where the users have to fill in their information along with their contact details and the customized package will be send to the customers in the mail ID provided.
Attar Travels gives the sense of community to the customers of Saudi Arabia by making an alternate way of changing the language of the website to the language of Saudi Arabia. It might help the Attar Travel to create a sense of community among the users of Saudi Arabia and who are natives of the county but in the international level, it might not help the company. If the company would have created some other language changing options then it would have helped the company to get an international recognition (De Mooij, 2013).
Attar Travel helps the users with certain external links like hair transplants and weight loss. However, the links do not match the types of industry Attar Travel is functioning.
Conclusions and Recommendations
After going through the websites, it can be said that the all the websites have made use of proper pictures, graphics and animations to attract the customers. After looking into every aspect of the websites, it can be concluded that global travel solution is the strongest website out of all. On the other hand, attar travel has to do a lot of planning to make their website up to the mark. The tab coming soon does not have any result. Once the tab is present, the customers will expect some information. It is recommended that Attar Travel should either put information in that tab or make the tab visible only when there is some new incorporation will happen in the website. As far as Ace Travel is concerned, it is recommended that the website should explore the hotel bookings as well and make more options visible for the users online. The history suggests that ace travel is a well-known organization. However, online booking is booking is used by all. To stay in the competition of online bookings, Ace Travel should develop their website as per the need.
Ace-travel.com,. (2016). Ace Travel. Ace-travel.com. Retrieved 20 December 2016, from https://www.ace-travel.com/atnew/plan.html
Attartravel.com,. (2016). Attar Travel | Best Travel Packages & Holidays From Saudi Arabia To All Over The World. Attartravel.com. Retrieved 20 December 2016, from https://www.attartravel.com/#
Business Wolf,. (2016). Saudi Arabia vision 2030: Will the dream come true? How?. Business Wolf. Retrieved 20 December 2016, from https://businesswolf.org/saudi-arabia-vision-2030-will-the-dream-come-true-how/
Czinkota, M. R., & Ronkainen, I. A. (2013). International marketing. Cengage Learning.
De Mooij, M. (2013). Global marketing and advertising: Understanding cultural paradoxes. Sage Publications.
Gazette, S. (2013). Cite a Website - Cite This For Me. English.alarabiya.net. Retrieved 20 December 2016, from https://english.alarabiya.net/en/business/economy/2013/11/03/Saudi-Arabia-s-online-travel-industry-to-exceed-1-9bn-in-2014-shows-study.html
Gts.travel,. (2016). Online Hotel and Package. Gts.travel. Retrieved 20 December 2016, from https://gts.travel/GtsTravel.aspx?enc=L43Z5t+uiJsiRAHOC+XxbnL35lGAw2bsegK5rKjz9DUlLCkkiwCXys5GnrBR9CFzVDi67HMsRC5UDufGnawbUafHaRLcEbUEhqYXyUr5+9M=
Shani, D., & Chalasani, S. (2013). Exploiting niches using relationship marketing. Journal of Services Marketing.
Tnooz,. (2013). Saudi Arabia leads booming Middle East online travel sector. Tnooz. Retrieved 20 December 2016, from https://www.tnooz.com/article/saudi-arabia-leads-booming-middle-east-online-travel-sector/
Zamiltravel.com,. (2016). Saudi Arabia Travel Agency | Corporate Travel Solutions in Saudi Arabia. Zamiltravel.com. Retrieved 20 December 2016, from https://zamiltravel.com/site/index
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