Technology is changing the way in which traditional retailers do business

Technology is changing the way in which traditional retailers do business. Brick-and-mortar retailers understand that a shift is taking place between retailers and consumers. In the past, the retailers control over pricing information provided them with the upper hand in most transactions. With information provided by the Internet, the consumer’s knowledge in transacting and negotiating with retailers has given them the upper hand. By channel surfing, consumers can gain detailed pricing information about product ranging from bikes to office supplies to digital televisions, thus enabling them to negotiate better deals. What is expected of retailers is changing dramatically. In order to compete, companies like JCPenney, Target Corp., Best Buy, and Amazon.com are pushing new mobile programs. They hope these efforts make it easier for customers to shop online with their smartphones. This enables customers to get news of sales earlier than with other methods such as commercials or circulars. Failure to keep up with the Internet will spell failure for most retailers.
1. How would you use the Internet to purchase your next car?
2. Using your smart phone, laptop computer, or desktop computer, select two or three different auto websites.
3. List their web addresses, such as www.autobytell.com, and make a report describing what they have on their websites.
4. Which one you like best?
5. Why?
6. Can you purchase online from each website?
7. What is the buying process?
8. Can competitors gain anything from looking at these websites?