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Chapter 4 Customer Interface
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  1. e-commerce Chapter 4Customer Interface

  2. Overview of Customer Interface • Technology-mediated customer interface • Shift to “screen-to-face” interface • Types of interfaces available • “Look-and-feel” of the website • Commerce activities • Communities in the business model • 7Cs framework

  3. Questions  What are the seven design elements to the customer interface?  What are the alternative “look-and-feel” approaches to design?  What are the five content archetypes?  Why be concerned with community?  What are the levers used to customize a site?  What types of communication can a firm maintain with its customer base?  How does a firm connect with other businesses?  What are alternative pricing models of commerce archetypes?

  4. Seven Design Elements • The 7Cs Framework for customer design • Interface is the virtual interface • Worth visiting? • What products or services? • What messages does it communicate: exclusivity, low price, or ease of use?

  5. Definitions and Simple Illustrations Context – aesthetic and functional look and feel Content – digital subject matter such as text, video, audio, graphics Community – interaction between users Customization – tailor itself or be tailored by user Communication – dialogue between site and users Connection – formal linkages between sites Commerce – sale of goods, products services on site

  6. The 7Cs of the Customer Interface Context Site’s layout and design Content Text, pictures, sound and video that web pages contain Community The ways sites enable user-to-user communication Commerce Site’s capabilities to enable commercial transactions Customization Site’s ability to self-tailor to different users or to allow users to personalize the site Connection Degree site is linked to other sites Communication The ways sites enable site-to-user communication or two-way communication

  7. Building Fit and Reinforcement Fit – extent each of 7Cs individually support the business model • Reinforcement – aesthetic context of the site

  8. Fit and Reinforcement of Cs Business Model Individually Supporting Fit Context Content Community Customization Communication Connection Commerce Consistent Reinforcement

  9. Performance of Lands’ End Site

  10. Look-and-Feel of the Design Context • Look and feel of a screen-to-face customer interface • Includes website, PDA, cell phone

  11. Dimensions to Context Function • Organized into sets of pages • Provides means to navigate through pages • Section breakdown • Linking structure • Navigation tools • Performance dimensions • Speed – site page • Reliability – lack of downtime • Platform independence • Media accessibility – download in various platforms • Usability – navigation ease

  12. Aesthetic and Tips Aesthetic • Color scheme • Visual themes Usability Tips and Tricks • Quick • Easy • Search capability • Get outside opinion • Clear categories • Clear product names

  13. Exhibit 4-4: Form vs. Function — The Design Context Frontier Integrated High Aesthetically Dominant AESTHETIC/ FORM Frontier is gradually moving outward as technology advances Low Functionally-Dominant Low High FUNCTION

  14. Aesthetic Example — KMGI.com

  15. Context archetypes • Broad, generic approaches to context design • New technologies introduce new techniques, introduce new aesthetics • Aesthetically dominant – look-and-feel, high form, low function • Functionally dominant – low form, high function • Integrated - balance of form and function

  16. Functional Dominant — Brint.com

  17. Integrated Approach Example — Patagonia.com

  18. Point-Counterpoint: Form vs. Function

  19. Five Content Archetypes • Content • Dimensions to Content • Offering mix – product, information, and/or services • Appeal mix – promotional and communication messaging • Multimedia mix – text, audio, image, video, and graphics choices • Content type – time-sensitivity

  20. Content Archetypes • Offering Dominant • Superstore • Category killer • Specialty store • Information-dominant – information, but may have entertainment • Market-dominant – market for buyers and sellers

  21. A Framework to Understand Offering-Dominating Archetypes Multiple Superstore NUMBER OF PRODUCT CATEGORIES SpecialtyStore CategoryKiller Single Broad Narrow DEPTH OF PRODUCT LINE

  22. Superstore Example — Amazon.com

  23. Category Killer Example — Petsmart.com

  24. Specialty Store Example — Frontgate.com

  25. Information Dominant — Business 2.0 (www.business2.com)

  26. Market Dominant Example — PlasticsNet.com

  27. Drill Down - Content Archetypes vs. Offering Types

  28. Point-Counterpoint: Is Content King?

  29. A Community • Community • A feeling of membership • Strong sense of involvement • User-to-user communication

  30. Elements of a community • Cohesion • Effectiveness • Help • Relationship • Language • Self-regulation

  31. Types of communities • Just friends • Enthusiasts • Friends in need • Players • Traders

  32. Degree of Member Participation • Passive • Active • Motivated • Caretakers

  33. Member Benefits • Need fulfillment • Inclusion • Mutual influence • Shared emotional experience

  34. Dimensions of community • Interactive community • Chat • Instant messaging • Message boards • Member-to-member e-mail • Noninteractive communication • Public member webpages • Member content

  35. Communities — Elements, Types, and Benefits Elements of Community Types of Communities Member Outcomes: Participation and Benefits Just Friends Degree of Participation • Cohesion • Effectiveness • Help • Relationships • Language • Self-regulation Enthusiasts • Need Fulfillment • Inclusion • Mutual Influence • Shared Emotional • Experiences Friends in Need Players Traders

  36. Community Archetypes • Bazaar – wander but not interact • Theme park – finite number of areas organized by categories and subcategories • Club – highly focused on only one areas of interest, promoting interaction among members • Shrine – highly focused community with minimal interaction • Theatre – focused in area but allows for moderate interaction • Café – focused on common area of interest but provides considerable interaction among members

  37. Bazaar Example — Games.Yahoo.com

  38. Theme Park Example — VoxCap.com

  39. Club Example — Gillette Women’s Cancer Connection

  40. Shrine Example — The Unofficial Dawson’s Creek Web Site

  41. Theater Example — iFilm.com

  42. Cafe Example — Bolt.com

  43. Drill Down - Focus vs. Interactivity Non-equilibrium state: Successfully-managed communities will move toward higher levels of interaction Games.yahoo.com Contact Consortium.com Bazaar VoxCap.com Bolt.com FOCUS Theme Park iFilm.com Trace.com leonardodicaprio.com Mall Women’s Cancer Connection Shrine Theater Cafe INTERACTIVITY

  44. The Levers Used to Customize a Site • Customization • Dimensions of customization • Personalization • Log-in registration • Cookies • Personalized e-mail accounts • Content and layout configuration • Storage • Agents • Tailor by site • Tailoring based on past user behavior • Tailoring based on behavior of other users with similar preferences

  45. Customization Types • Personalization by user • Consciously articulated • Acted upon preferences • Tailoring by site • Reconfigure past behavior • Reconfigure by other users of similar profiles

  46. Personalization by User Example — mylook.com

  47. Tailoring by Site Example - Amazon.com

  48. Karman Parsaye’s Measuring Personalization Quotient • Customization (PQ1) – individual preferences • Individualization (PQ2) – based on users behavior • Group characteristics (PQ3) – based on preferences of others with similar interests

  49. Types of Communication a Firm Can Maintain with its Customer Base • Communication • Dimensions of communication • Broadcast • Mass mailings • FAQ • E-mail newsletters • Content-update reminders • Broadcast events

  50. Communication ... • Interactive • e-commerce dialogue • Customer services • User input • Hybrid • Combines broadcast and interactive • Often “freeware” use as marketing