Merit Event - Expanding e-Business Horizons

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Can your business really make money from your website?

This question has occupied many business leaders in recent years. The problem is that, like any business decision, the issues need careful consideration before any investment is made.

To assist business to formalise their eBusiness plans, and to demonstrate how the Internet can open the door to a global marketplace, we are holding this showcase event in which a number of local businesses will demonstrate how their organisations have profited from the development of a company website.

The speakers at the event will include representatives from:

• A car import company who have used the Internet to turn their business from a back bedroom operation to a multimillion pound concern;
• The toy and hobby retailer who use their website to sell goods across the world; and
• The ferry operator who have used their online presences to provide a comprehensive service offering to their customers.

In addition to these real case study examples we have also invited Lloyds TSB to explain how online payment functionality can be added to a website.

The speakers at this event will not be talking about the theory involved nor will they be offering a magic panacea which can be applied to all business cases. The event will, however, provide you with an opportunity to generate ideas and learn from organisations that have practical experience of using the Internet to expand their customer base and increase their profitability.

To supplement this event the North West Development Agency ¡V has agreed to present details of the Northwest Broadband Fund. This programme is providing funding to support projects that will lead to increased use of broadband based connections within the region.

Published in: Economy & Finance, Business
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Merit Event - Expanding e-Business Horizons

  1. 1. <ul><li>A brief history </li></ul><ul><li>Key elements of the site </li></ul><ul><li>Plans for the future </li></ul>www.irishferries.com
  2. 2. A Brief History First Ferry Company in the world offering real-time ONLINE bookings <ul><li>Bookings </li></ul><ul><li>1998 - 400 bookings </li></ul><ul><li>1999 - 1,200 bookings </li></ul><ul><li>2000 - 13,000 bookings </li></ul><ul><li>2001 - 27,000 bookings </li></ul><ul><li>2002? - 50,000 bookings </li></ul><ul><li>Current weekly volumes are 25% of motorist business </li></ul><ul><li>Site pages </li></ul><ul><li>1998 - 50 pages </li></ul><ul><li>2002 - 1,000+ pages </li></ul>
  3. 3. Key elements of the site <ul><li>The Shopping (Browsing) Experience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Comprehensive, easy to access information and images on </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Routes, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ports, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Services and the </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Facilities Available including 360 degree images of the Main Passenger areas of the Ships, and the Cabin Accommodation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>FAQs – frequently asked questions </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Key elements of the site <ul><li>The Booking experience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Timetables, Fares, Special Offers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Best Fares available on-line 24-hours a day </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customer in control of the Booking Process </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>All of the customers securely stored on their Account </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>e-mail address and password secures the information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Air Miles and discounts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Real-time sailing update </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Key Elements of the site <ul><li>Our Customer Service </li></ul><ul><ul><li>All e-mails are automatically acknowledged, and an average response time of 20 minutes weekday, 2 hours in the evening, and same day at weekends is in place </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>We provide Phone support Weekdays 08.30am-9pm, Saturday 9am-4pm, Sunday 10am-2pm </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>24 hour sailing Information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SMS messaging to Mobile phone for Disrupted Sailings </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Key Elements of the site <ul><li>Customer Feedback </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Each page on the site invites the customer to comment. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Since Feb. 2001, 5000 site feedback forms have been submitted. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Every customer who completes a booking is separately encouraged to give feedback on the booking experience. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Since Feb 2001, 14,000 booking feedback forms have been submitted. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customer Feedback has been the backbone of the ongoing development of www.irishferries.com. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Plans for The Future <ul><ul><li>If I tell you, I Will have to Shoot you </li></ul></ul>

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