Technology for Bottom Line Dr. Ralph D. Westfall

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  • 1. Technology for Bottom Line Dr. Ralph D. Westfall California Small Business Roundtable September 25, 2005
  • 2. Initial Constraints
    • next slide has list of business problems
      • or opportunities
    • problems need to be solved
      • inexpensively
      • with very limited technical skill requirements
  • 3. Some Business Problems
    • communicate with people scattered over a wide area
    • communicate better with local people
    • use additional sales channels
    • create a unique product or experience for customers
    • get spouse a Valentine's day gift
  • 4. Generalize from Examples
    • the following examples came from my experiences as an educator
      • with non-profits and/or students
      • specific aspects should still fit many business situations
  • 5. Communicate Over a Wide Area
    • a previous student has adrenal cancer
      • very rare so research funding is limited
    • problems
      • raise more money for research
      • provide emotional support for others
    • solutions
      • web site entry , petition (limited traffic)
      • Google AdWords campaign ; guestbook
  • 6. Communicate Better with Locals
    • thrift shop in Bellflower, CA
    • problems
      • reach more people
      • help them find the store
    • solutions
      • Google: Local results , map
      • improved search engine ranking
  • 7. Additional Sales Channel
    • thrift shop in Long Beach, CA
    • problems
      • merchandise arriving faster than selling
      • selling some items for lot less than worth
    • solution: eBay already has technology
      • sales outlet
      • source of pricing information
  • 8. Unique Customer Experience
    • my senior level classes at Cal Poly
    • problems
      • content needs to be up-to-date/relevant
      • different skills need to work together
    • solution: entrepreneurial projects
      • E-Business and CIS classes work together
      • attempt to sell projects at end
  • 9. Conclusions
    • can do a lot with a little on Internet
    • don't need much technical skill because a (relatively) user-friendly infrastructure already exists
    • use your imagination to figure out ways to use existing Internet capabilities for the benefit of your business
  • 10. Valentine's Present
    • mrswestfall.com
      • top search engine ranking
    • additional advantage: can keep updating over time
      • animation added two years later
      • downside: animation requires more technical skills than traditional web site development
  • 11. Epilogue
    • thrift shop in Long Beach didn't have a good eBay person to keep it going
      • Bellflower thrift shop already had a specialist
    • maintenance
      • web sites need to be kept up after students leave