The Marketing space has seen an evolutionary change and migrated largely to the electronic space. There has been a big change the way businesses have started selling their products and services and the way consumers are reached and targeted. It’s the digital space which has today become the meeting place for consumers and marketers to converge and thereby perform their business. As the internet has already exploded with an enormous number of websites, blogs, forums and social networking sites it’s important to understand the specific types of online presence available for marketers and businesses to stage their products and services with intentions to be reached by their prospective customers. While we access the relevance and importance of E-Marketing it’s also important to understand that different business types have different opportunities and challenges. According to today’s internet existence, there are mainly 5 types of online presence which are possibly available.
a) E-Commerce Sites also called transactional sites: To put it in simple perspective transactional sites are sites where financial transactions are allowed or occur. These sites are created for selling and purchasing products and services in return for financial payment which is conducted via the site itself. All E-Commerce sites are the best example of transactional sites as there are many players who can take leverage of a transactional site like Manufacturers, retailers, travel or financial service providers.
b) Service oriented Sites: This is a type of websites wherein it is made as a window to project the services provided by the company or even the products available for purchase. These sites do not provide any products to be purchased online and hence there are no transactions done here. Typically these sites are used for relationship building and lead generation. The main business contribution is via off-line sales and generating inquiries. The best example for such sites is that of car manufacturers or IT companies who project the features and qualities of their services or product.
c) Portal or Media Sites: The main purposes of these sites are to provide maximum content and information to the visitors. The term portal itself means to be a gateway to information about a range of services and other websites for seeking more information. The best examples would be www.yahoo.com or www.tripadvisor.com
d) Brand Building Websites: Brand building websites do not sell online any product or services but help in building an online value and reputation to support the brand. Best known to be used by FMCG products wherein the brand image of the company is mostly focused on.
e) Social Networking Sites :As is the emerging way of amplifying products and services online is the Social networking sites where the platform is more of enabling interactions between different consumers or should be said more of a C2C model. There are various ways of communicating with which can be posting, commenting, likes, sharing and replies, hash tagging etc. The most well-known examples are always there on everyone’s palm via the smart phones which are Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and many more social networking sites.
It’s not necessary that all the other virtual media platform are covered as today every now and then there are so many new platforms developed and deployed online that to Digitally market the business. It all depends on the type of business for which platform best suites it and thereby make a choice of the platforms available. But emphasis today is choosing Social Media Marketing or Social Networking site as this has become the best place for one to one interactions with consumers let it be any type of business, product or services offered.