A study of the Internet and its impact on the direct sales industry
Since the introduction of the Internet as a viable channel of electronic commerce and marketing, consumers and businesses alike have been strongly challenged. As a customer-driven market, the Internet has triggered emerging consumer behavior that demands new approaches to communication, customization, and pricing from businesses.
This study looked at the impact of e-commerce on the traditional marketing mix; how the traditional market, consumers, and firms are influenced; current trends and issues; and the importance of organizational transformation. A case study approach was used to explore the trends in the direct sales industry and specifically, Avon Products, Inc.
The differences between traditional marketing transactions and those in an electronic environment are significant enough to demand change from business. This study demonstrates that the Internet has resulted in increased competition, the need for pricing flexibility, and simply the necessity to be online, even if only to have an Internet presence.