Google has taken the webmasters and bloggers by a storm once the web giant announced the change in its search engine algorithm, the newest kid on the block, Google Hummingbird. Unlike Google Panda or Penguin, this is not an update but a completely new way to look at the web of things. So let us try to understand the implications of this change and how it may affect the bloggers and content providers: Continue reading
New technologies have become essential not only in our everyday life, but also when it comes to business and trade. That is the case of small business transactions, where we find there is a huge volume of transactions that involve millions of people each day.
People buy, sell, and trade all kinds of items every day, and one of the best ways to do so is by posting ads online. It is a simple way of obtaining many benefits in little time and a good chance of making great deals. How? Where?
OLX India is the next generation of free online classifieds. Wherever you may be, OLX is the best, easiest, fastest way to solve the complications involved in selling, buying and trading. Since it was founded in 2006, OLX has experienced a rapid growth and is now available in 40 languages and used in over 105 countries. And what’s more, all of this is completely free.
OLX has also discovered the advantages of using mobiles in order to improve their services. This is where Smartphone Apps come into play. With the implementation of OLX Classifieds Mobile Apps, finding, buying and selling products has become increasingly easier, even more than doing so from a computer.
The process is simple. You can instantly post your ad by clicking on the picture of the product you wish to sell from the App, including a summary of its features, the price you wish to charge for the product and providing your contact information.
It is also very easy to find products near you by using the location of your phone. It will automatically search offers that have been posted near your area and might be of interest to you.
If you wish to share your ads with people you know, there is also an option to share it on Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, and via email. These social networks are also a good way of sharing it with the rest of the world.
Food Plaza, the new organic multi-cuisine hotel cum restaurant was finally inaugurated in December 2012. This restaurant is based out of Rohtak, Haryana, which is an extension of the National Capital Region of India. It opened its doors with a promise of delicious food cooked and served with the authentic localized style and aroma of the distant exotic locations. But what are equally delicious are its ambitious plans to drive the existing business using social technologies. This restaurant wants to be much more than a place to dine, for the strategic focus of the senior management was very different. The focus on differentiation using technology was on the minds of the management. So how could the latest technology be used to create a differentiating factor for the restaurant in the minds of the customer? Marketing services successfully is always a big challenge.
This problem was resolved by going the “e-business” way. It was not an easy decision to move away from what everyone was doing. Even harder was implementing such an executive level decision. But Food Plaza decided to provide a vast social networking experience and not just food to its visitors. Inside the restaurant, located at the corner of Sheela Bypass and Delhi Road, a 100-square-feet LCD monitor constantly streams Twitter mentions with hashtags, restaurant specific news and blog updates, and eFood-Plaza check-ins. eFood-Plaza is a Web and mobile application developed by Food Plaza that allows registered users to connect with friends and update their location information. Points are awarded for “checking in” at the restaurant and then updating the Facebook status or Tweeting. Customers see tweets and status updates and reply to them or add their own messages with their cell phones or other mobile devices. A free WiFi zone has also been added which even facilitates streaming video entertainment for every visitor. Every status update, photo posts or tweet made after checking into eFood-Plaza, which gets over 10 likes or 5 retweets become eligible for brownie points, redeemable at Food Plaza. This makes young visitors go crazy about updating their status messages after checking into e-Food Plaza, with the objective of encashing on the additional value from such promotional campaigns.
This restaurant has multiple options for placing an order. You can place your order to a restaurant waiter directly, or by using a smartphone while you are located close by, or you can place the order online yourself for free delivery. Food Plaza was also designed and placed optimally for Location Based Services. Food Plaza also has its own Facebook page, which it uses for social marketing and for running marketing campaigns. Tagging yourself on its Facebook wall makes you eligible to win promotional coupons up to Rs.500/-. Food Plaza offers Rs. 500/- worth of food to whoever is the first in every week to post a picture of him or her in front of the restaurant’s “tag wall”, a wall in the front of the restaurant inviting people to write status updates using a Magic Marker and get over 50 Facebook likes. Food Plaza also uses social networks for promoting its “Chak De Rohtak” campaign for improving the conditions of women empowerment and children education. These campaigns have also added to the engagement with its customer segment, even beyond their presence in the restaurant.
But what makes Food Plaza really stand out is its use of crowd-sourcing for both marketing and menu development. This restaurant has developed an App for customers with smart-phones, which allow them to invent their own dishes and to give their recipes innovative names. Every time someone orders an item invented by another customer, the inventor receives a voucher with an in-store credit. With Food Plaza’s list of ingredients, millions of combinations are possible. Some customers will no doubt use their extensive social networks to promote the burgers they invented. Those with thousands of followers on social networks could conceivably earn “free dishes” for the rest of their lives if they constantly promote Food Plaza. All of these measures create very low-cost incentives for large numbers of customers to actively promote the restaurant. They also generate word-of-mouth “buzz” with minimal expenditure. All it takes is establishing a presence on social networks and rolling out promotions. One would feel that such a strategy would actually go beyond the regularly posited “theories of services marketing”
Competing with the other restaurants based out of Rohtak won’t be easy for Food Plaza. But by using social networking technology to forge ties with customers and giving those customers a stake in the success of dishes, Food Plaza hopes to have the recipe for not only multiple successful recipes but also a successful business model. With huge success the Food Plaza wanted to have faster reach in different parts of India. It has done an acquisition of a well known multi-cuisine restaurant ‘Brown Chilli’ having presence in all metro cities in India. The Brown Chilli is having fully IT enabled integrated system to perform all aspects of operation and analysis requirement but lacking the innovativeness of Food Plaza.
Disclaimer: This is a case study which has been created fictitiously. The purpose of this case study is to create a scenario for academic discussions in classroom teaching. This case bears no intentional resemblance with any real life institution or person operating any similar business, even if there is close resemblance in terms of name or business processes or both, to any existing organization.
References: Laudon, K. C., & Laudon, J. P. (2004). Management information systems: managing the digital firm. New Jersey, 8.
Business Process Outsourcing on Cloud- Reaping High ROI
Cloud brings in a great deal of benefits for different type of businesses, to cut costs and improve efficiency of different business processes. From SaaS to Iaas, there are about countless ways through which business can implement cloud to outsource their critical system and processes.
This article is going to discuss how in-take of cloud based solutions for BPO helps in gathering momentum.
Using Cloud to get The Maxim
You are going to get an ample of examples of where cloud computing has been done, for instance – an organic baby food manufacturer may be using the cloud to streamline its massive logistics, while other firms are thinking to sign up for cloud-based HR services.
This article focuses on the way various BPO companies are picking up clouds from market to test the environment, so that they execute more processes to their clients.
However, there is an interesting caveat to note here, is the suggestion that use of cloud is still in its early steps and 13% of business process outsourcing services is already cloud-based. With cloud call center services are able to cater massive amount of scope to businesses that are able to derive advantage from these benefits.
CLOUD- Driving Benefits for BPO
With cloud computing and business analytics, new life has been injected to BPO sector through reduced upfront costs and better use of data.
IT enabled BPO services has a large role to play, and they can be fine tuned to cut costs, but the best performing BPO deals are using IT to innovate and speculate.
Recent researches affirm that 20% of BPO projects are able to deliver sufficient business value for high performance. The findings from the research confirm the changing role of technology in BPO.
Software-as-a-service (SaaS) means businesses can introduce the applications used in BPO agreements without giving large upfront payments. Business magnets are of the opinion that best-of-breed technology is easily available and are easy to apply.
They further added, earlier BPO agreements are usually overloaded with cost-loaded technology. In past a business have to purchase license and then install heavy-duty business applications as a part of BPO deal, but now they can easily sign up for BPO services and easily scale up and down the number of users.
What is the concept of researchers on CLOUD, used in BPOs?
- 85% of high-performing BPO considers cloud service provider to be a strategic partner, compared with 41% of typical BPO services
- 75% of high-performance BPO involve senior leaders from both parties spending time to understand each other’s objectives and strategies
- 90% of high performers reported that client and provider were able to productively resolve conflicts
- 77% of high-performing BPO have successfully executed change management plans
- 85% of high-performing BPO proactively refine their objectives as the relationship matures
- 67% of BPO include business benefits beyond cost in the business case, compared with 26% of typical engagements;
- 58% of will consider service options with greater value, even at higher costs
- 56% of high performers seek competitive advantage through BPO
- 64% of BPO places more focus on capturing other benefits as they achieve cost reduction
- 54% have contract performance incentives in place
A new approach to cloud computing is helping enterprises to recognize more of the business transformative aspects, such as improvements to productivity, business agility and business continuity as they present plans and sells concept to management teams. In fact with cloud computing and business analytics, new life has been injected to BPO sector through reduced upfront costs and better use of data.
Author Bio: Emma Johnson is an outreach expert and is closely associated with lead generation and telemarketing services. She is in contact with inbound order taking services that are popular for their prompt answering services to appease both client and customer with quality outsourcing.
And here come 2012. The era of computing has seen some dramatic improvements in 2011. But what is interesting is the evolving focus of technology majors from large enterprises to small and medium sized businesses. So what could be the major movers and shakers for the next two years as we gear ourselves to ride this wave of technological evolution, more in terms of focus and perspective?
- Small and Medium Enterprises (Popularly called SMEs) will ride the wave on e-business offerings. The time has come when even the smallest service provider will leverage m-commerce to advertise his service range for the customer in serviceable range, with the growing popularity of location based services. Everyone with a mobile is potentially reachable through this technology, which is fast increasing in popularity. The fact that Forrester Research predicts m-commerce will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 39% through 2016, and that tablet adoption will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 56% per year through 2015, indicates Location Based Services have a really bright future.
- With the increased popularity of SaaS models in Information Technology offerings, small business can today harness the power of costly powerful technological resources, shared by multiple users, without shelving off millions of dollars. I foresee more and more focus of offerings in the domain of Business Intelligence, which are in a cloud model, for SMEs from the technology service providers. With the resources moved to a cloud, it would be possible to harness the power of ever improving processing capabilities to the available data and then leverage the information and knowledge and gain competitive advantage. The offerings of Business Intelligence on the cloud, should be of the greatest boon to the SMEs and should have a great rate of technology adoption.
- With the increasing access and penetration of the internet, the years to come may witness a growing proliferation of web based start-up ventures, which may operate purely on a click first e-business model. There may be a splurge of knowledge disseminating service providers or web-based internet marketers leveraging the power of affiliate marketing. However, it would remain to be seen whether this time the wave survives longer than the last wave which crumbled during the dotcom burst of the late 1990s. These pure-click e-business models may be further boosted by the integration of such business with the social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, the likes of which have seen a faster adoption amongst the consumers than any other technology.
- With a greater focus on web-based offerings, very soon SMEs will start harnessing the power of open source resources and applications, in the regular operations and transactions. Job monitoring, scheduling, live meeting and communications in general will start being more accessible to the SMEs without deep pockets. This may see a fast growth amongst businesses who are able to assimilate the benefits of the increasingly accessible technological offerings.
- Last, but not the least, technology may again be leveraged in providing social services. With the increasing focus on social marketing, and the issues centered on triple bottom line, sustainable governance structures may evolve amongst the SMEs which would be heavily leverage on the power of technological advances in general, and e-Business models in particular.
In short the next few years promises to deliver a lot to us. But to what extent the technology evolution and revolution will witness an adoption and assimilation in the SMEs will be interesting to monitor. What do you feel about this era of technological evolution and its impact on SMEs? Write to us.
Location-Based Services (LBS) typically are information based or entertainment providing services, accessible with mobile devices like smart phones, web-enabled phones, PDAs, Notepads and Palmtops through the services of a telecom network provider. Typically these services utilize the ability to make use of the geographical position of the mobile device. These services are getting immensely popular as a tool for services marketing for B2C focused businesses.
For example, you are at location X. You suddenly need servicing for your car or gas. Also you are hungry. With Location Based Services enabled on your mobile device, you can be guided to the closest place at the time of your need to the junction that can service your needs in the best possible way. It may be a Gas Station with a food joint.
This is not all. Location Based Services have a very high potential for cross-selling and upselling new services and lower cost of customer acquisition. Intimation of location specific services may be offered to potential customers, and conversion of leads to sales may be extremely high, in certain services. For example, close to a highway, if a joint is present that provides refreshments, and the travelers are intimated of the same during a journey about the same, this may rake in huge benefits. Many CRM solutions used location based services to rake in value for their users.
With the increasing popularity of cloud computing in the era of information technology enabled services (more often internet enabled services), Location Based services are one of the more promising services technology majors are focusing on, due to it extremely high potential revenue generating future. Started first by the 3 majors in 2000, Ericsson, Motorola and Nokia,Location Based Services and the research on the service science on the domain has never looked back. The first major full-scale commercial Location Based Service was launched by DoCoMo in Japan , based on triangulation for pre-GPS handsets in 2001. Services like Friendfinder, Yellow pages, houseposition, emergency call location etc. were the first few services that harnessed enormous acceptance from its targeted consumer base across geographies.
- Network-based positioning (NBS): Relies on base stations to find the location of a mobile device sending a signal or sensed by the network
- Terminal-based positioning (TBS): Calculating the location of a mobile device from signals sent by the device to base stations
- Global positioning system (GPS): A worldwide satellite-based tracking system that enables users to determine their position anywhere on earth
In fact, in current times, major technology majors like IBM have their own extensive solution for work-force management, that uses platforms for location based management systems. Customer knowledge management by effective usage of location based services is another area that is expected to create a lot of value in the near future. The recent acquisition of GoWalla by Facebook is another such indication that even Social Media majors are considering potential revenue from advertisements from such services. The potential profitability of such services are encouraging the trend, and as more and more focus is increased on the Cloud Computing, these services are bound to be a major revenue earner for technology giants, and can be a crucial ace for the players in the IT services and IT enabled services industry.