Companies started using the web to provide information, but one in five consumers now buy items online that they used to buy in-store. The idea that all websites are equal in the eyes of consumers is also wrong: there are extreme traffic flows, with a small minority of sites carrying a disproportionate amount of traffic. Most websites are invisible to most users.
Online customer promiscuity is a major commercial fear, but research suggests consumers new to a site overestimate their propensity to switch at a later date: familiarity encourages return visits. The most common means of reaching a website is memory. Given the importance of recollection, companies should try to build top-of-mind awareness through online ads and website entreaties.
Links from peer sites are the second most common means of navigation, so businesses should also seek to partner with other sites.
Source: Is your company web savvy?
Business Strategy Review, Vol 17 No 1, spring 2006
Review by Steve Lodge