Combining an offline and online business
An Amway case study

Page 1: Introduction

These days, we are surrounded by 'high-tech' developments. Ordinary citizens may not suffer too much from failing to keep track of new technologies the moment that they appear, but it can be disastrous for a business not to notice what is taking place. One key challenge for any business is to see how new technologies can be harnessed to develop the business and keep it ahead of the...
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Page 2: Amway

Founded in the USA in 1959, Amway is a global business employing more than 6,000 people worldwide. Amway is not just a consumer goods business, it is also one of the world's largest direct sales companies with over 3.3 million Independent Business Owners in more than 80 countries and territories in Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas. The critical relationship between Amway and the seller...
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Page 3: Creating the online presence

The project's starting point was to create a brand name for the site that was truly pan-European and which would be acceptable across a range of European markets. Developing a brand involves compiling for products with a range of features that identify them as a group e.g. name, logo and other distinctive elements. Marketers at Amway had to take into account the way in which the brand they...
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Page 4: Combining offline and online

Developing a new process like Amway's European online business takes place in distinct stages. The first phase was to construct a business analysis report that focused upon how the Independent Business Owners were likely to respond to the development of e-commerce opportunities. The market research involved running focus groups with Independent Business Owners in Italy, Germany, Spain and the...
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Page 5: Launching the website

The purpose of the Amivo site was to provide e-commerce support for Independent Business Owners that would help them manage their businesses. Available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, the site was developed to help users to find products, place orders, repeat previous orders and check all of the information about their businesses. All users needed was an Internet-ready computer and access to the...
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Page 6: Online gains

The web development provided Amway's Independent Business Owners with an alternative, enhanced way of managing their businesses. It gave them the chance to use technology to communicate in a different way with Amway. Within a short period of time, the website attracted a significant number of Independent Business Owners who wanted to try the online service. Promotions helped to encourage repeat...
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Page 7: Conclusion

The success of a new process depends largely upon how well the technological and marketing systems have been developed. There have been many changes to product distribution in recent years and organisations like Amway, which support a large number of Independent Business Owners, cannot stand still if they want to retain their competitive advantage. Many dot.coms have found it difficult to...
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