USE OF WEBSITE AND SOCIAL MEDIA OF WOOLWORTHS LTD Woolworths Ltd is retailer so main goal is to sell. Scale of online shopping increased manifold in last two decades. In present time in developed countries, such as Australia customers can buy online almost everything. On this base arose the need to create a new field of marketing – internet marketing and e-commerce. THE BASIC UTILITY AND USER-FRIENDLINESS OF THE FIRM’S WEBSITES From all 32 divisions of Woolworths Ltd, 16 have websites. Also there is one website which belongs to Woolworths Limited and describes enterprise as a whole.
All websites fulfil different roles. DIVISIONS| CHARACTERISTICS| Woolworths Limited| Customers can find reports, media releases, announcements, board of directors and management, information for investors, characteristics of strategies and actions adopted by company. http://www. woolworthslimited. com. au/phoenix. zhtml? c=144044&p=homepage| AUSTRALIA| Woolworths | Woolworths is main division of Woolworths Ltd. Now, there are over 700 stores in Australia which serve over 13mln customers every week. Its website is the most developed from all divisions.
Customers can buy online goods via site, get information about performances, use interactive options, store locator or leave feedback. http://www. woolworths. com. au/wps/wcm/connect/website/woolworths| Thomas Dux Grocery| Website provides only information about new coming products, promotions, recipes and store locator. http://www. thomasdux. com. au/| BWS Beer Wine Spirits| Via this website customers might only find information about types of alcohol sold in stores, current offers in stores. Except from wines and beers in this sores there is possibility to buy hard liquor. ttp://www. beerwinespirits. com. au/| Dan Murphy’s| This is online shop where customers can buy all types of alcohol. Additionally, customers get knowledge about offers and events. http://danmurphys. com. au/dm/home. jsp| Cellarmasters| Online shop – selling wines only (white, red and sparkling). Also provides information about hot deals and gifts. http://www. cellarmasters. com. au/| ALH Group| Website of Woolworths’ hotels. Customers may find information about company, media releases, venues, social responsibilities. http://www. alhgroup. com. u/| Caltex Woolworths/ Safeway Petrol | Website has information about products, offers, rewards, gift cards, safety issues, petrol station locator. http://www. woolworthspetrol. com. au/home| Big W| Online shop (home & garden, beauty & health, baby, electronics, entertainment, toys, sports & leisure) store locator, online catalogue, and big sale in stores. Has link to Facebook account. http://www. bigw. com. au/bigw/home. jsp| Dick Smith| Electronics online shop – TV & Video, Audio & Mp3, photography, computers, printers and office, mobiles & wireless, car & GPS, gaming, home & security, kids technology.
Customers can take advantages of online deals, store locator and links to social media websites (Facebook Twitter, YouTube). http://dicksmith. com. au/dsau/home. jsp| Masters Home Improvements| Website provides only information about new coming products, promotions, store locator and tips about decoration – Ideas & Inspirations. http://masters. com. au/| NEW ZEALAND| Countdown| Countdown fulfils the same role as Woolworths in Australia – main supermarket in New Zealand. Online shop, offers, stores, community, overview of company. http://www. countdown. co. z/| Super Value| Website provides information about current promotions, new releases, overview of company, tips about food and nutrition. http://www. supervalue. co. nz/| Fresh Choice| Website has the same layout as Super Value site – only colours are different. Store differs from Super Value by wider range of products (SV – convenience store, FC – full-service store). http://freshchoice. co. nz/| Dick Smith Electronics| Its website has the same layout and content as Australian Dick Smith’ website. Online shop. http://www. dicksmith. co. nz/dsnz/home. jsp| INDIA|
Croma| Website provides information about electronics products available in stores, special offers and news and media. http://www. cromaretail. com/| Table shows there are two main purposes of running website in case of Woolworth’s divisions. One of them is to provide information about products, current special offers, and overview of company, media releases and news, recipes and tips which can be useful to customers. It is used so the client can get the information he needs before leaving home. Customers focus on saving time and money and comparing offers to choose the best one which would fit their needs.
Companies realise that they must become competitive in its sector to ensure marketing success. Seven divisions have online retailers. It is a very dynamically developing branch in retailer world. Online shopping statistics give full view on this subject. * 88% internet users undertake one or more e-commerce activity * 69% have purchased one good or service in last six months * 1 in 5 Australians do most of their shopping online * Australian traffic to online retail sites: * eBay – 5,576,000 unique visitors * Amazon – 2,191,000 unique visitors Woolworths – 1,488,000 unique visitors * Average 15% growth of internet shopping every year since 2005 * Market share of internet shopping of 7% of all retail sales (14% growth from last year) * Australian-based ecommerce sales – A$16. 9bln in 2009, A$33. 3bln in 2015 These facts bring about that online shopping has dormant potential which most companies need to utilise to acquire new customers. To be successful a company must develop its website so that it will be attractive to customers. This attractiveness is defined as user-friendliness of the website.
There are some common characteristics features which determine user-friendliness: access to site map, logical navigation structure, low frequency of errors occurrence, consistent design and layout, access site search tool, access to contact details, easy language, search engine friendly, easy access to main navigational links in the page heading and footer and access to links to social media. There are also many more criteria which makes websites user-friendliness. Following table shows application of these elements on companies’ websites. – has feature and is user-friendlyX/+ – has feature but is not user-friendly X – doesn’t have feature | Site map| Navigational structure| Low errors occurrence| Design and layout| Site search tool| Woolworths| X| +| +| +The best design| +| Thomas Dux Grocery| +/XBad visibility| X/+| +| X/+Poor design| +| BWS Beer Wine Spirits| +| +| +| X/+Poor design| X| Dan Murphy’s| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| X/+Only for products| Cellarmasters| X| +| +| +| +| ALH Group| X/+Bad visible| +| +| X/+Old fashion style| X| Caltex Woolworths/ Safeway Petrol| X/+Bad visible| +| +| X/+Old fashion style| +| Big W| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| +|
Dick Smith (AUS and NZ division)| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| +| Masters Home Improvements| X| +| +| +| +| Countdown| X| +| +| +| X/+Not on home page| Super Value| X| +| +| +| X| Croma| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| +| | Contact details| Easy language| Search engine friendliness| Navigational links| Social media links| Woolworths| +| +| +| +| +Facebook| Thomas Dux Grocery| +| +| +| +| X| BWS Beer Wine Spirits| +| +| +| +| X| Dan Murphy’s| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| X| Cellarmasters| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| X| ALH Group| +| +| +| +| X|
Caltex Woolworths/ Safeway Petrol| +prominent| +| +| +| X| Big W| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| +Facebook| Dick Smith| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| +Facebook, Twitter, YouTube| Masters Home Improvements| +| +| +| +| +Facebook, Twitter, YouTube| Countdown| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| +Facebook, YouTube| Super Value| +| +| +| +| X| Croma| X/+Bad visible| +| +| +| X| The table shows that generally websites are user-friendly. Weak points are repeated in some sites. The most common weakness is placing site map and contact details in bad visible location – usually in page footer.
Second thing is poor and old fashion design – computer graphic is well developed and websites should adapt new solution to increase attractiveness and relevance of website. Smaller retailers do not engage in internet marketing and e-commerce. They use only information function in relation to their customers. Other elements work out smoothly and internet users should not have problems with navigation on the websites. Simplification for young people is the use of social media links. User-friendliness of the websites should be assessed positively. WEBSITES AND THE CUSTOMERS
Internet sources announce various rankings and list of top online retailers. On the list of 60 most popular listing retailers there are 3 retailers belong to Woolworths Ltd: #7 – Dick Smiths Electronics, #8 – Dan Murphy’s and #18 – Woolworths. List of Australia’s top 10 online retailers from February 2011 contains 2 retailers: again Dick Smiths and Big W. Dick Smiths were on the list three years in the row so it shows how well running is the website. Design, updates and layout of website encourage customers to shopping online. Success of Big W is spectacular because it started its activity on the Internet at 10th May 2010.
The easiest way to check what costumers think about company is to follow forums where they express their opinions. There are massive numbers of people who buy online and most of them do not complain about the quality of shopping on the Internet via its websites but complain about time they have to wait for delivery. Is it website fault? Delivery is next stage of internet purchase so probably people who organise work in warehouses bear responsibility for delay time. References Communications report 2010–11 series Report 1 – E-commerce marketplace in Australia: Online shopping [Online] Available from http://www. cma. gov. au/webwr/_assets/main/lib410148/CR_comp_report1-E-commerce_Marketplace_in_Australia. pdf [Accessed on 01st January 2012] Most Popular Listings [Online] Available from http://www. aussie-shopping. com/directory/popular-listing. html? limitstart=20 [Accessed on 01st January 2012] Walsh, J. , 50 Tips to a User Friendly Website [Online] Available from http://www. designinginteractive. com/design/50-tips-to-a-user-friendly-website/ [Accessed on 01st January 2012] Online shopping: Woolies or Coles? [Online]