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The Effect of Digital Marketing on Customer Satisfaction

Background to the Study

Digital marketing according to the Financial Times Lexicon (2016) is defined as the marketing of products or services through the use of digital channels so that more customers can be reached. It extends beyond internet marketing to also be inclusive of channels which do not need the use of the internet. Examples are both SMS and MMS through mobile phones, social media marketing, display advertising, search engine marketing and other forms of digital media. To experts, the use of digital in marketing is not another marketing channel but one that necessitates a new marketing approach which better understands customer behaviour through the use of analysis and quantifying value of downloads of apps on mobile devices, Twitter tweets and Facebook likes to name three (Financial Times Lexicon, 2016). 

An example of companies using digital marketing successfully is Pizza Hut that created an app allowing customers to build their own specific pizza by dragging chosen toppings onto a graphical pizza base. The smartphone such as an iphone used for this, would then locate the nearest Pizza Hut location to the customer. This new app was advertised through the use of print, television and online allowing for the app to be downloaded 100,000 times in 2 weeks and pizza orders valued at US$1 million was done in three months. Apps such as these are popular as they allow for convenience as well as empowers customers to evaluate a product against other competitors using different features and metrics

What is the effect of digital marketing on customer satisfaction?


To explore how digital technology affects customer satisfaction 

Research objectives

1. To carry out on a literature review on digital marketing and customer satisfaction

2. To conduct a primary study on digital marketing and customer satisfaction

3. To recommend how Sainsbury could use digital marketing to improve customer satisfaction 

There is a relationship between digital marketing and customer satisfaction

According to Kotler and Armstrong (2014), there has been an increase in the use of internet connectivity which has allowed for people to communicate using social media, mobile applications and other internet connections and this is all facilitated through the use of digital technologies. This has become an integral part of people’s lives where in Great Britain, 82 percent of people who are considered to be adults are using the internet which amounts to 41.8 million people. This represents an increase of approximately 20 percent when compared to 2015 which had 39.3 million people and if the comparison is made between 2016 and 2006 it will show that 16.2 million people in 2006 was connected to the internet daily (ONS, 2017). Interestingly, during 2016, 70 percent of all adults within Great Britain used mobile handheld 
devices such as smartphones and tablets to connect to the internet and this shows an increase of 66 percent between 2011 and 2015.

Chaffey et al (2012) suggests that the use of digital marketing to promote products and service has significantly increased because of the digital channels that are available. The key for digital marketing by businesses is that they are promoting their brands by directly interacting with the customers on a variety of ways and this is one of the advantage that digital media provides for businesses. That is, companies are 
able to use websites, apps, social media, SMS messaging to target customers who are using mobile handheld devices that are connected to the internet. 

Katawetawaraks & Lu Wang (2011) defines the activity of online shopping is when customers use the internet to purchase their goods and services. According to Chaffey et al (2012), organisation which does not engage in digital marketing will have declined customer satisfaction and this is supported by Ginnopoulous (2014) who suggests that digital marketing has significantly increased customer satisfaction. 

A recent study carried out by Bright Local Consumer Review Survey revealed 95 per cent of customers perceive digital marketing to increase customer satisfaction when they are able to carry out searches online, use online coupons, receive newsletters online and when they are advertised to online. 

With the phenomena of the internet which has facilitated online and digital marketing, contemporary businesses have now started to increase the use of the internet to communicate with customers. For example, consumers are becoming more mobile meaning they have are moving about more than before and because of this businesses have to adopt to changes of seeking to be on the go with customers. 

Online shopping is made possible by using digital marketing to provide information to customers about products and services so that they are influenced to purchase it (eMarketer, 2015). It then becomes necessary for businesses to use consumer research as a medium to understand the consumer behaviour regarding how to use digital marketing to communicate with customers so that they can be impacted in a 
positive way to make purchases.

On the contrary, digital marketing can be a complex operation especially for small businesses because of requires expertise and knowledge that some small business does not have (Chaffey et al., 202). There is also the issue of data breaches causing persons to have their personal details being stolen and accessed by hackers and this represents a breach of trust. According to Kotler and Armstrong (2014), digital marketing pose the problem for businesses to integrate their strategic plans with digital marketing strategies as the two strategies may not yield the result the 
business seek to achieve.

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