Business on the Web

Business on the Web

From SSRG Annoki

Jump to: navigation, search


The Internet and the Retailing Marketing

People Involved

Paul Messinger Eleni Stroulia

For the retailing industry, the Internet is not only a new marketing channel but also a new marketing communication tool. As a marketing channel, the Internet could inexpensively store, search, and organize vast amount of product and service information, could customize information on demand immediately, could serve customers around the clock, and could distribute some certain products (e.g., CDs) in a fast way. As a marketing communication tool, the Internet is fast, interactive, and economic, and it could reach consumers in a broad geographic area. We are trying to answer the following questions:

  • How do retailers utilize the Internet as a new marketing communication tool to better communicate with their customers?
  • Should established bricks-and-mortar retailers add an Internet channel to their channel portfolio? If they choose to do so, how do we evaluate the Internet channel additions?
  • How do retailers with dual channels coordinate their activities between the Internet and conventional channels to realize channel synergy?
  • Since the new online promotions mechanisms could boost both online and offline sales, how should these online promotions be designed?

Retail in the Metaverse

People Involved

David Chodos

Eleni Stroulia

SL E-Commerce
SL E-Commerce

The combination of realistic virtual environments and product information offers a compelling new medium for consumers to shop for products. Specifically, by combining the experience of exploring a virtual house with retail information on items in that house, a consumer can virtually populate a house with desired items. This is particularly appealing for people, such as a couple getting married, who are looking to furnish an entire house with newly-purchased items. The system discussed in our ICWS2008 paper provides this combination of realistic, 3D visualization and detailed product information. It uses Second Life to provide the realistic user interface, and a REST-style web-based application to create connections between this platform and publicly-available retailer APIs. In cases where a retailer API is unavailable, HTML wrapping may be used to obtain equivalent information. The economic viability of the concept is examined through a business case study.

The prototype of our SL Wedding Registry can be accessed from

Music Industry Trend Analysis

People Involved

Michelle Annett

Eleni Stroulia


Given the wide spread popularity of digital media outlets such as iTunes and the infusion of Web 2.0 ideas across the Internet, the power of collaboration and information sharing has never been more prevalent. While most companies have changed their business paradigms to adapt to these changes, one of the industries that has not adapted to this sudden shift in social behavior is the music industry. To support the new online trends that are occurring, the author has created Invenio, a geovisualization and trend analytic web service. Invenio utilizes a variety of different technologies (Yahoo! Maps, Amazon Associates Web Service, REST, and the Flex framework) to create a dynamic, innovative web service.

The Invenio project was developed for CMPUT 660 - Winter 2008 (a course on software services) and examines the power of intuitive visualizations supported by REST services for understanding trends in this fast evolving industry. A viewlet can be found at

The Internet and Service Industries

For decades, automation and self-service technologies have transformed service industries, and Internet technologies are accelerating this process. The banking industry, for instance, has seen a transition from exclusive use of tellers, to automated teller machines (ATMs), to online banking. The transition has influenced significantly service delivery processes. We are building up a conceptual framework for service processes that relate four stages of service management (strategy, design and implementation, delivery, and measurement) with multiple ways of service delivery (employee, self, and automated, possibly enumerated in multiple stages). Our framework highlights seven management challenges arising from combining human and automated service delivery processes.

  1. Recognize the key issues (conceptualize);
  2. Choose the value offer (strategize);
  3. Plan and roll out the process (design and implement);
  4. Deliver service through multiple coordinated points of contact (manage company processes);
  5. Influence customer self-delivery participation through suitable communications (manage consumer expectations);
  6. Track performance, including the process, outputs, and financial implications (measure);
  7. Coordinate interdisciplinary activities, including management information systems, marketing, operations, human resources, computing, and finance (coordinate).