1. Describe the business strategy, the business model and the marketing approach of the chosen company.
Ao.com which is Electrical Appliances Company is a purely online shop that was launched and branded in 2000. Ao.coms main strategy was getting recognition through social sites like facebook, pin interest, youtube, and twitter. Ao.com realized that their activity on social media directs most of the people who visit the website via searches. Ao.com mostly targets traffic on mobile because their sites can be accessed through all devices; it also brands itself with a smiley face on the logo. Online platforms also allow for quick feedback which may be negative if a customer is not satisfied. In the case of a negative comment, the company has a team of customer cares who are trained to respond honestly within a maximum of ten minutes. If the mistake is AOs they admit to it and find a way to rectify or make up within the shortest time in their possibility (Kare-Silver, 2014). Positive feedback from satisfied customers serves as a recommendation for other customers who have not yet used ao.com services. Since the white goods are not popular and their contents not easy to create the company mixed the fun of social media with their content to capture target audience. The company invested heavily in facebooks platforms of advertising to get the attention they want.
Some of their recent content includes the video of the man who won the Guinness World Record for balancing a washing machine on his head for the longest time ever. Additionally, content is a video of a man named Tony who runs a charity marathon for people living with cancer with a fridge that weighs 42-kilo grams on his back. AO hacks are tips on how to use AOs products faster and efficiently like warming two sets of food on two plates in one microwave at a go and how to maintain the freshness of your clothes using their products. Occasionally on youtube, AO creates competitions whose winners are rewarded with white goods or receipts on AO hacks.
Impression matters and AO strives to make a great impression. AOs drivers who supply their goods to customers usually carry a record of positive and negative feedbacks from previous deliveries since they meet customers face to face. They show the booklet containing the comments to create a great impact which is the good impression. The company has managed to get over 1.6 million likes on Facebook.
2. How many years did the technology adoption process take to penetrate the market? What other products/services have been replaced?
In 2014 their applications could not support the rapid growth, and it cost the company so much to maintain. They then upgraded to the New Relic Applications Performances monitoring which had the ability to spot problems automatically at a faster rate. It takes the company months to improve systems if they are not complying with the growing demand. The constant rapid test for the best available upgrades elongates the span because the company is constantly upgrading to the best available technology. AO has changed its company culture to a culture based on service to their customers. Their focus is on transformative culture, content that is of quality, best designs and a safe website for its customers. AO has managed to expand the business to other countries which are an upgrade to international fronts (Management Case Book, n.d.).AO systems are encrypted with safety locks using industry standard technology to ensure privacy in payment detail if a customer complains about a product delivered AO sends a new product on the same day.
AO employs staff caring and has a passion for best delivery to customers because care cannot be instilled. The employees must have values that will match with the culture of the company. Most improvements made by AO are on customer service. AO ensures precise contact details of customers while offering assurance and protection for returns, refund and exchange of goods within at least 14 days of delivery. AO has adopted testing impacts and growth radically and its implications for the business. Optimization and testing were adopted by the company in 2014 and became part of them, and their evolution in online service provision is proof to this.
3. Is the company sustainable for the years to come? Please critically evaluate the company and their business model.
AO is likely to be sustainable for the next years coming because of their focus on customer impression and best online expression. AO is one of the online retailers whose focus is on customer satisfaction. AOs value is on its customer focus which offers great experiences while shopping and browsing on their sites. Unlike many e-commerce companies, AO communicates value and service propositions that are unique throughout the experience of their customers. AOs universal header is located after their logo. AOs site differentiates their messages using bold and straightforward for recognition which includes their prices, payments, returns, and delivery. AO will stay in the market above their competitors because they are transparent they are open on their services. Visitors are communicated to directly on the services offered by AO by leaving a white space between their messages. Their site provides the distinction that is recognizable in their main messages by use of icons, use of different colors to promote visibility and repetition of keywords.
Unlike most e-commerce businesses AO provides free delivery on all orders and they offer their services seven days a week which includes Sunday. AO provides clarity on all expenses their customers will incur via their calculator while providing the comparison of prices with their competitors. Unlike most e-commerce companies AO recognizes different customers tastes for browsing. They have a different pathway that fits different customers behavior that helps customers make informed decisions. AOs website recommends favorite products mostly bought by their old customers to new a customer which is relevant.
The companys site has a filter option which beats all shops that are not online; this option provides distinct products based on numbers, prices, brands, colors and many other details on specifications. AOs website is also a proof of excellent customer service because of the content on their home page which is evident in their headline and messages of feedbacks of happy customers. The provision of social proof and record of past services keeps them one step ahead of their competitors because most new clients prefer recommendation or evidence of reliable and excellent service delivery. AO manages this through social sites like Facebook reviews and clients ratings by stars (Lewis, 2015). Customers satisfaction is evident and visible in summary on their homepage. If a customer reads the reviews and scrolls down, he/she will see all detailed information including the size of the family of the person reviewing. AO is on top of most e-commerce businesses because of delivering experiences that are one of a kind, full of emotions and persuading to their customers both new and old.
Kare-Silver, M. D. 2014. Digital Insights 2020: How the Digital Technology Revolution is Changing Business and All Our Lives. Troubador Publishing Ltd.
Lewis, K. (2015). Facebook Marketing: How to Use Facebook for Effective Internet Marketing and Social Media Success. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.
Management Case Book. (n.d.). Excel Books India.