Online marketing is the practice of leveraging web-based channels to spread a message about a company’s brand, products, or services to its potential customers. The methods and techniques used for online marketing include email, social media, display advertising, search engine optimization, and more. The objective of marketing is to reach potential customers through the channels where they spend time reading, searching, shopping, or socializing online (Tucker, 2014).
Online Marketing is the process of creating, delivering & communicating the value of a product or service and making it relevant to customers so that they are compelled to consider buying a product or a service when they encounter your brand online (Bell & Davison, 2013).
Online marketing uses all facets of internet advertising to generate response from the prospected customers and owing to the wide use of internet in all dimensions of life, the procurement in the first world countries mainly has been enhanced and now spreading to other countries rapidly. This helps in determining the success of emerging online shopping habits of new breed of consumers (Gupta, Balmer & Low, 2015).
On the other hand, more companies have realized that the consumer behavior transformation is unavoidable trend, and thus change their marketing strategy. As the recent researches have indicated that, the internet shopping particularly in business to consumer (B2C) has risen and online shopping become more popular too many people. There are many reasons for such a rapid developing of internet shopping, which mainly due to the benefits that internet provides. First of all, the internet offers different kind of convenience to consumers (Kemp, 2016).
Furthermore, the internet can enhance consumer use product more efficiently and effectively than other channels to satisfy their needs. Through the different search engines, consumers save time to access to the consumption related information, and which information with mixture of images, sound, and very detailed text description to help consumer learning and choosing the most suitable product (Moon, 2014).
Online shopping is, however, a different experience from shopping in a physical retail store. One major point of difference deals with store atmospherics. As flow experience occurs during network navigation, an issue Online-marketers must consider is whether consumers’ skills are competent to meet the challenges of the virtual environment.Information technology provides online consumers with tremendous access to information about products and services from anywhere in the world and from different sources other than solely from the product seller. The combination of less time available for shopping, limited information-processing capability and the explosive amount of information on the web has, however, led customers to demand more control, less effort and greater efficiency during shopping (Belch et al, 2012).
Today, in the area of marketing, changes take place at a staggering rate. Continuing marketing strategies that today’s organizations use in the marketplace is no longer a hazardous and challenging application. Companies, in addition to updating their marketing plans, have to revise their executive practices and marketing practices in order to cope with major environmental changes (such as globalization, the elimination of many regulations in various industries, the advancement of communication systems and Computers and ripping markets) get the right response with little or no budget (Kemp, 2016).
Today, in various business markets, there is a lot of focus on improving the efficiency and effectiveness of marketing processes. Many organizations and companies face many budget constraints in business and should be able to find it with the least amount of resources and investment to maximize profits for their long-term survival and stability (Eicher, 2011).
Online marketing is essentially any marketing activity that is conducted online through the use of internet technologies (Spree, 2016). Online marketing is any tool, strategy or method of getting the company name out to the public. The advertisements can take many different forms and some strategies focus on subtle messages rather than clear-cut advertisements. Online marketing is a set of powerful tools and methodologies used for promoting products and services through the internet (Willson, 2016).
Online marketing is the practice of leveraging web-based channels to spread a message about a company’s brand, products, or services to its potential customers. The methods and techniques used for online marketing include email, social media, display advertising, search engine optimization, and more. The objective of marketing is to reach potential customers through the channels where they spend time reading, searching, shopping, or socializing online (Goldfarb & Tucker, 2011).
A large number of potential customers browse the internet, look for information or simply enjoy their favorite pastimes with an internet connection. By taking advantage of the online tools and resources, it is possible to get the company name out to the public and encourage potential customers to look further for information. Widespread adoption of the Internet for business and personal use has generated many new channels for advertising and marketing engagement. There are also many benefits and challenges inherent with online marketing, which uses primarily digital mediums to attract, engage, and convert virtual visitors to customers. Online marketing differs from traditional marketing, which has historically included mediums like print, billboard, television and radio advertisements (Close & Kukar-Kinney, 2010).
The consumers buying behavior has been always a popular marketing topic, extensively studied and debated over the last decades. A distinction is frequently made between high and
low involvement purchasing, implying that in practice the actual buying activity can be less or more consistent with this model, depending on the buyer’s perceived purchasing risks. High or low degree of involvement is also a question of buyer experience; products purchased for the ?rst time, in general, require more involvement than frequently purchased products (Boyd et al., 2012).
Consumer behavior includes the knowledge and feelings that people experience and what they do in their consumption process. It also includes elements of the environment that affect this knowledge, emotions and behavior. Consumer behavior is dynamic, because, knowledge, thoughts, emotions and consumer behavior are distinctly changing, target groups and society as a whole are constantly changing (Parsons & Conroy, 2006).
Consumer behavior is not just about buying goods, it also includes goods, services, activities, and ideas, and marketing efforts are called to meet the needs of individuals. Although buying is very important for marketers, but consumer behavior does not just cover purchases. Consumer behavior includes three acquisition, consumption and disposal activities. Consumer behavior does not necessarily reflect the behavior of a particular person. Deciding whether to buy a car, going to a particular restaurant, renting a home are behaviors that. Having an understanding of consumers and the buying process has many advantages. These benefits include helping decision makers, providing a cognitive basis through consumer analysis, helping legislators, and legislating on the purchase and sale of goods and services, and ultimately helping consumers make better decisions (Forman, 2014).
One aspect of the importance of examining the impact of online marketing on customer behavior is the importance of identifying customer online behaviors for marketers, especially online marketers.Understanding consumer behavior is important for any organization before launching a product. If the organization failed to analyze how a customer will respond to a particular product, the company will face losses. Consumer behavior is very complex because each consumer has different mind and attitude towards purchase, consumption and disposal of product (Solomon, 2009).
Understanding the theories and concepts of consumer behavior helps to market the product or services successfully. Moreover, studying consumer behavior helps in many aspects. As there is constant change in the living standards, trend, fashion and change in technology; consumer’s attitude towards the purchase of product varies (Kumar, 2014).
Understanding these factors is of utmost importance because the marketing of product are largely dependent on these factors. Thus, consumer behavior serves as a successful tool for marketers in meeting their sales objectives. Consumer Behavior or the Buyer Behavior is referred to the behavior that is displayed by the individual while they are buying, consuming or disposing any particular product or services. These behaviors can be affected by multiple factors. Moreover, it also involves search for a product, evaluation of product where the consumer evaluate different features, purchase and consumption of product. Later the post purchase behavior of product is studied which shows the consumer satisfaction or dissatisfaction where it involves disposal of product (Solomon, 2009).
The customers while buying a product goes through many steps. The study of consumer behavior helps to understand how the buying decision is made and how they look for a product. Moreover, the understanding consumer behavior also helps marketers to know the what, where, when, how and why of the consumption of product consumption. These help marketers or organizations to know the reason behind the purchase of product by consumers and how it satisfies them. Among other factors, the basic needs like shelter and hunger along with craving for psychological fulfilment tends consumer to buy a certain product or services (Kumar, 2014).
It is important for online marketers to study consumer behavior. It is important for them to know consumers as individual or groups opt for, purchase, consumer or dispose products and services and how they share their experience to satisfy their wants or needs (Solomon, 2009).
The importance of identifying customer online behaviors for online marketers, helps online marketers to investigate and understand the way in which consumers behave so that they can position their products to specific group of people or targeted individuals. In regard to the marketer’s view point, they assume that the basic purpose of marketing is to sell goods and services to more people so that more profit could be made. This principle of making profits is heavily applied by almost all marketers. Earlier, the marketers were successful in accomplishing their purpose. However, today, as the consumers are more aware about the use of product and other information of the product, it is not easy to sell or attract customer to buy the product (Kumar, 2014).
Consumer’s attitude towards online shopping refers to their psychological state in terms of making purchases over the Internet. Online buying behavior process refers to the products purchased online. The process of online buying behavior consists of five steps and it is similar to traditional shopping behavior (Liang & Lai, 2010). For instance, consumer recognize the need for buying some product (book), they refers to the internet to buy online and start to search for the information and look for all the alternatives and finally make a purchase which best fits to their needs. Before making final purchase consumers are bombarded by several factors which limits or influence consumers for the final decision (Laplante & Downie, 2015).
The buying-in decision-making process begins before buying, and after that, it continues. Therefore, the marketer should pay attention to the entire process of customer behavior instead of focusing solely on factors that make purchasing decisions. In addition, customers may never go through the decision-making process in stages. Instead, they can continue the process with different behaviors and even ignore some of them (Lasner, Sugarbett & Woolf, 2007).
The following are some of the points discussed that explains the value to marketers of understanding and applying consumer behavior concepts and theories.
ü To understand Buying Behavior of consumers
ü To create and retain customers though online stores
ü To Understand the factors influencing Consumer’s buying Behavior
ü To understand the consumer’s decision to dispose a product or services
ü To increase the knowledge of sales person influence consumer to buy product
ü To help marketers to sale of product and create focused marketing strategies
Online marketers can have some bearing on the outcome of the buying process by engaging different marketing tools, the most prominent being the 4Ps – product, price, place and promotion – also known as the marketing mix. Understanding the mechanisms of virtual shopping and the behavior of the online consumer is a priority issue for practitioners competing in the fast expanding virtual marketplace. This topic is also increasingly drawing the attention of researchers. Indicative of this is the fact that more than 120 relevant academic papers were published in 2001 alone (Cheung et al., 2013).
Having said the above, understanding the mechanisms of virtual shopping and the behavior of
transaction volumes and business penetration, quite a lot of research has endeavor to uncover
various technicalities involved. More than 20 per cent of Internet users in several countries already buy products and services online, while more than 50 per cent of US net users regularly buy online (Forrester Research Inc, 2014).
These developments are gradually transforming ecommerce into a mainstream business activity while at the same time, online consumers are maturing and virtual vendors realize the importance and urgency for a professional and customer-oriented approach. Yet the Internet meltdown at the end of the 1990s and plenty of more recent anecdotal and empirical evidences indicate that many online firms still do not completely understand the needs and behaviors of the online consumer, while they sell products online (Joines et al., 2013).
As in the case of traditional marketing in the past, most of the recent research and debate is focused on the identification and analysis of factors that one way or another can influence or even shape the online consumer’s behavior; a good deal of research effort is focused on modeling the online buying and Decision-making process (Miles et al, 2016).
While many researchers do not see any fundamental differences between the traditional and
online buying behavior, it is often argued that a new step has been added to the online buying
process: the step of building trust or confidence (Lee, 2012).
Online marketing can also be crowded and competitive. Although the opportunities to provide goods and services in both local and far-reaching markets is empowering, the competition can be significant. Companies investing in online marketing may find visitors’ attention is difficult to capture due to the number of business also marketing their products and services online. Marketers must develop a balance of building a unique value proposition and brand voice as they test and build marketing campaigns on various channels (Zentner, 2012).
Online marketing has several advantages for customers, including:
ü Low costs: Large audiences are reachable at a fraction of traditional advertising budgets, allowing businesses to create appealing consumer ads.
ü Flexibility and convenience: Consumers may research and purchase products and services at their leisure.
ü Analytics: Efficient statistical results are facilitated without extra costs.
ü Multiple options: Advertising tools include pay-per-click advertising, email marketing and local search integration (like Google Maps).
ü Demographic targeting: Consumers can be demographically targeted much more effectively in an online rather than an offline process (Kim & Han, 2011).
The theory of online marketing and consumer behavior in online markets has been intensively observed over the years. However, a huge number of researches do not comprehensively study the view of the aspects of an effective and successful website. Each year the number of organizations that utilize the Internet for marketing purposes increases. Correspondingly, an increasing number of consumers use the internet not only for gathering information but also for purchasing goods. A website is the front page, the first picture for organizations that operate online and it is better to be developed in a way that brings customers close to the online market and form good impressions. The online marketing had become a vital marketing medium for businesses all over the world. Many studies have examined the online consumers behavior (Bridges & Florsheim, 2015).
The influences on consumer behavior are often made between external and internal factors. External factors are come from the environmental conditions, and internal factors are usually from the consumer’s mind. There are many factors could influence consumer’s behaviors. According to Warner, the external influences could divide into five sectors: Demographics, socio-economics, technology and public policy; culture; sub-culture; reference groups; and marketing. The internal influences are variety of psychological processes, which include attitudes, learning, perception, motivation, self image, and semiotics (Malcolm, 2013).
Some companies from all over the world has already established their business in Iran from two years ago. Many other European & Non-European Companies are doing market research to enter Iran Market but speed is an important issue because the ones who come sooner & with plans has the most power of choice (Zare & Mohammadi, 2016).
Considering the importance of reviewing and identifying customer behavior in the field of online marketing, the aim of this study is also, the impact of online marketing on consumer behavior in the iranian retail market.
Importance and necessity of research:
The most important aspect of this research is the importance of customer and customer buying behavior for online marketing companies.E-marketing which is also known as online marketing can be define as marketing of goods and services done through electronic tool. It’s developing the tools online transactions of business in buying and selling. It’s the modern way of marketing in which technology used drastically. It has now become a huge tool between marketers and customers. (Kemp, 2016).
E-marketing is new and rising tool in marketing world. It is done through audio, video, 3D, etc. it is effectively adopted by most MNCs and International Business worldwide. Its scope is rising throughout the world. (Hooda & Aggarwal, 2012 ). Internet has changed the whole concept and view of marketing. Its growth is highly effective the overall world economy. Exchange rate of foreign currency rises.There are different synonym use for online marketing that is e-shopping, e-store, e-web stores, internet shops etc (Ashwini.N & Manjula, 2016).
The e-marketing and especially social media marketing has drastically changed the consumer behavior and marketing method. Social media is a path to communicate regarding particular goods or services of any particular brand on its social media page. Social media customers mostly belong to the young or teen-age side rather than business and professional people. The social media is one of the e-marketing tool which attract or capture a wide range of consumers. It’s a path for consumers to communicate regarding product or services online. Those are mostly peers who talk about the brand, style, product type, services etc. As they mostly belong to same age group, approximately same financial background, so the easily or effectively help or guide each other for buying that particular product or availing any services. (Vinerean, Cetina, Dumitrescu, & Tichindelean, 2013 ).
You can easily search the product information online, no sales tax for company as everything done online. Different e-shopping and e-marketing coupons are available on different websites as well. The research showed that there is a positive relation between consumer buying decision and internet security. (Dehkordi, Rezvani, & Rahman, 2012).
In today’s busy and critical time running period, people want updated information instantly, with the help of just one click on the site. They are floating product and services for marketing purpose on their web pages, that help consumer to find about their products or their services or their company’s information. We create a base or a foundation by explaining or defining how e-marketing work.And also how to identify and distinguish it and its components as well. It’s a very crucial task for companies or marketing and advertising sectors to build up a website that will define company’s products, services and other factors that is link with marketing. Planning and building a web is a crucial and the difficult strategy (Ashwini.N & Manjula, 2016).
Online marketing is the future of globalization and online marketing industry. Study showed that online word of mouth has greatly effecting on consumer purchase behavior and decision. Study also showed that 70% of the U.S population trust online shopping by experiencing them personally, through dealing with different buyers, sellers, and other legally online shopping websites. There is high percentage of increasing online buying in developed countries rather than developing ones. For eg. Companies like Walmart is highly effectively and efficiently dealing with their online customer and consumer, getting their feedbacks on time, capturing a huge marketing at same time with their traditional buyers and with their online buyers. This is the reason their sales activities increase rapidly at a limited time (Chen, Fay, & Wang, 2011).
Research objective and research questions:
The main objective:
ü How does online marketing affect on consumers behavior?
The sub objective:
1- What are the components and factors of online marketing that affect customer behavior?
2- Online marketers can focus on what approaches can positively influence customer behavior?
3- Online marketers focus on which customer attributes to deliver on-demand products improve their online shopping behavior?
4- Does online marketing have unique features compared to other marketing methods to influence customer behavior?
Definitions of variables (Conceptual and Operational definition):
Online marketing: Online marketing is a set of powerful tools and methodologies used for promoting products and services through the internet. Online marketing includes a wider range of marketing elements than traditional business marketing due to the extra channels and marketing mechanisms available on the internet. In fact, online marketing is the practice of leveraging web-based channels to spread a message about a company’s brand, products, or services to its potential customers. (Roberts & Zahay, 2017).
Consumer behavior: Consumer behavior is the study of individuals, groups, or organizations and all the activities associated with the purchase, use and disposal of goods and services, including the consumer’s emotional, mental and behavioral responses that precede or follow these activities (Kemp, 2016).
Online marketing: Activities related to customer purchasing and marketing of companies online with using the Internet are considered as an operational indicator of online marketing in the current research.
Consumer behavior: The performance of the research sample statisticians in the researcher-made questionnaire on customer online behaviors, is considered as an indicator of the behavior of consumers in this study.