The Impact and Benefit of the Internet on
Marketing Mix

Arguably, the internet cannot be divorced
from social and economic activities in the 21st century. Electronic
commerce has become an everyday discussion, with many businesses and
organizations overhauling their business and marketing strategies to adopt
electronic marketing. According to Išorait?
(2016), the marketing mix refers to product, distribution, promotion and
pricing strategies employed by businesses and organizations to reach their
target markets. In a nutshell, the marketing mix entails the decisions and
actions taken by an organization to achieve its goals and objectives while at
the same time meeting consumer needs.

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In an article comparing
relationship marketing and internet marketing, Lim and Yazdanifard (2014) view
internet marketing as the process of using the web or internet as well as
information technology in marketing. Through internet marketing, marketers
target specific consumers with the primary aim of increasing visits to
particular websites to attract customers to buy their commodities or services. This
paper combines the concepts of internet marketing and the marketing mix,
exploring the impact and importance of the internet on the 4Ps of the marketing
mix.

Literature Review

Yannopoulos (2011)
discusses the impact of internet marketing on a firm’s marketing strategy. He
views internet marketing as an integral part in fostering the success and
competitiveness businesses in the 21st century where households are
increasingly embracing the use of internet and e-commerce. The article points
out that through internet marketing, the marginal cost of producing and
distributing digital commodities like music, pictures, software, news, health
tips, sports scores, horoscopes, stock quotes among others. Moreover, the
internet had enabled sellers and marketers to customize digital and non-digital
commodities. Concerning pricing, Yannopoulos (2011) argues that internet
marketing leads to increased information, interactive shopping agents, the
growth of online suppliers, auction houses and expand pricing research. For
distribution, internet marketing creates greater convenience when people buy
from home, more consumption time, various cost structures, electronic data
interchange and compresses time. Lastly, Yannopoulos (2011) postulates that the
internet had provided marketers with new ways of reaching target markets and
deliver the company’s message to the target market. He points out that a
website can be a combination of direct selling and advertising as it provides
information, generates awareness and exhibits the product to its existing and
potential consumers.

Pogorelova, Yakhneeva,
Agafonova, and Prokubovskaya (2016) highlight the dilemma of business
organizations in choosing whether to stick to traditional marketing or to
embrace internet marketing. They front the impact and benefits of e-commerce on
the marketing mix. For instance, for the product, they argue that a customer
can consult the seller for important information before purchasing the product.
Also, internet marketing allows the buyer to maintain anonymity, psychological
security and freedom from direct persuasion as in the case of direct selling. Using
e-commerce, the seller is able to price the product in line with competitors,
customer values, and cost of production. Regarding distribution, Pogorelova,
Yakhneeva, Agafonova, and Prokubovskaya (2016), argue that the social networks
and websites act as the points of sale. Specifically, sites serve as the point
of contact between sellers and buyers. They give examples of aliexpress and
ebay.com which provide goods at fixed prices and through auctions respectively.
Finally, they highlight the benefits of internet marketing in the promotion of
products. The internet offers a variety of promotional tools like native
advertising, mobile advertising, social networks advertising, contextual
advertising, and display advertising. Also, internet marketing replaces personal
selling with smart bots that enable customers to purchase multiple goods,
inform the customer concerning various events like delayed flights or when the
car needs servicing as well as the provision of financial services. Other
aspects of internet marketing covered in the article include sales promotion
using webinars, web conferences and email marketing; public relations where the
buyers are turned into brand advocates. Also, the internet acts as a tool
through which organic traffic increases through search engine marketing.

In an article comparing
the various marketing mix models for digital products, Wang, Wang, and Yao
(2005) reiterate the effectiveness of the 4Ps model of marketing digital
products. They mention the benefits of internet marketing on the marketing mix
such as convenience as the business operates round the clock without worrying
about opening or closing hours; reduced burden of distribution as the seller
does not have to open physical outlets. Also, the internet acts as a platform
for advertising and reaching out to target markets.

Ivanov (2012)
investigated the impact of the internet on the marketing mix. Using the
internet, sellers can sponsor events that increase the awareness about their
online websites, they can e-mail their clients to answer or respond to queries
or use the website as a tool for promoting and advertising their products.
Ivanov (2012) suggests that for smooth internet marketing, the site must be
up-to-date, easy to download, easy to navigate and attractive. While he does
not directly argue about the impact of the internet on the 4Ps of the marketing
mix, he provides crucial recommendations on the way websites should be
maintained to enhance internet marketing.

Jackson and Ahuja (2016)
conducted a study on dabbed the digital age and the evolution of the marketing
mix. In the study, they explored the benefits of the internet on the marketing
mix. Internet marketing provides sellers and buyers with opportunities to trade
a wide range of products and services. Second, internet marketing is useful in
creating strong brand images. Also, internet marketing is cost-effective,
allowing the seller to reach the target market in the unlimited space on the
web instead of operating physical outlets. Internet marketing is convenient and
inexpensive allowing for emailing, podcasts and instant messaging.

Yasmin, Tasneem, and
Fatema (2015) carried out an empirical study to explore the effectiveness of
digital marketing. They found that digital marketing includes pay per click,
search engine optimization, affiliate marketing, text messaging, social media
and email marketing. The main benefits of this form of marketing, according to
the study, include increased interaction with target markets, results that are
easy to measure, timely advertisement, fast and cheap promotion of commodities,
ability to go viral and two-way conversations that allow for real-time feedback
and responses.

Alford and Page (2015) conducted
a study that focused on the adoption of marketing technology by small and
medium enterprises. They found that most micro-enterprises adopt market
technology as a strategic response to the market forces. However, they found
that managers and owners of business organizations play a significant role in
the decision to adopt marketing technology. Internet marketing discovered in
the study implies that businesses adopt the technology that fits with their
business model. The study found that owners of small businesses have a positive
orientation towards the adoption of marketing technology due to the benefits
associated with internet marketing.

Stojkovi? (2013) wrote
an article on the impact of the internet on advertising and promotion. Promotion
being an important element of the marketing mix, the authors asserted that advertising
aims to ensure that customers have all the information concerning the product,
price and the terms of sale. According to the article, the internet allows for
quick access to product information, interactive communication, use of multimedia
and unlimited space, low costs of advertising and immediate feedback. Mih?lcescu
& Sion (2011) and Dehkordi, Rezvani, Rahman, & Fouladivanda (2012)
agree that marketing through social networking sites, web marketing, E-mail
marketing and mobile marketing have a significant impact on the promotion
element of the marketing mix.

Soomro, Hameed, Butt,
& Shakoor (2012), in a study on the significance of internet marketing in
promoting consumer goods, found that websites are the primary tools for
internet marketing even in developing countries. They front several
recommendations on how business organizations in developing countries should
adopt internet marketing strategies to assist them on their marketing
strategies. Firstly, they should employ sounds and voiceovers to attract customers
to their websites. Secondly, they should use other means such as direct mails
and newsletters to promote their internet marketing efforts. Thirdly, online
promotions should utilize e-zines, e-newsletters and banner ads. Moreover,
internet marketing efforts should be directed towards increasing awareness, personalized
services, and interactivity with customers.

Conclusion

All the sources featured herein provide rich literature on the impact and benefits of
the internet on the marketing mix. The common
digitized products include music, movies, pictures, software, news, health
tips, sports scores, horoscopes and stock quotes. The forms of internet
marketing, particularly promotion include native advertising, mobile
advertising, social networks advertising, contextual advertising, and display advertising. The sources advocate
for the move from traditional marketing to digital marketing, or an integration
of both. Some sources such as Soomro, Hameed,
Butt, and Shakoor (2012) provide the recommendations on how to implement
internet marketing in developing countries. Other sources like Alford and Page
(2015) focussed on internet marketing on small and medium enterprises as well
as the role of organizational leaders, managers, and owners in the adoption of
internet marketing technology. Collectively, the literature used in this paper
agrees that the internet has significant positive impacts on the marketing mix.

 

References

Alford,
P., & Page, S. J. (2015). Marketing technology for adoption by small
business. The Service Industries Journal, 35(11-12), 655-669.

Dehkordi,
J. G., Rezvani, S., Rahman, M. S., & Fouladivanda, F. (2012). A Conceptual
Study on E-marketing and Its Operation on Firm’s Promotion and Understanding
Customer’s Response. International Journal of Business and Management, 7(19),
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Išorait?,
M. (2016). Marketing mix theoretical aspects. International Journal of
Research-Granthaalayah 4(6), 25-37.

Ivanov,
A. E. (2012). The Internet’s impact on integrated marketing communication. Procedia
Economics and Finance, 3, 536-542.

Jackson,
G., & Ahuja, V. (2016). Dawn of the digital age and the evolution of the
marketing mix. Journal of Direct, Data and Digital Marketing Practice, 17(3),
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Lim
, W., & Yazdanifard, R. (2014). Relationship Marketing Vs. Internet
Marketing? which one Contributes
to Gain Higher Level of Consumer Loyalty. Global Journal of Management and
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Mih?lcescu,
C., & Sion, B. (2011). The functionality of the internet as tourism
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Nezamabad,
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Pogorelova,
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Stojkovi?,
A. (2013). ADVERTISING AND PROMOTION ON THE INTERNET  . FACTA UNIVERSITATIS 10(1), 77-87.

Wang,
K., Wang, Y., & Yao, J. (2005). A comparative study on marketing mix models
for digital products. International Workshop on Internet and Network
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Yannopoulos,
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Yasmin,
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