When adopting the strategy process model, the e-commerce companies conducted adequate environmental scanning, which is the first step in developing a strategy process model. This move helped them pay attention to the seasonal increase in demand associated with the 2014 World Cup. Further, the companies set clear goals for increasing profits and developed a strategy based on improving advertising opportunities, introducing seasonal promotions and offers, and selling goods related to the championship. At the stage of monitoring the effectiveness of the implementation of the strategy process model, e-commerce companies discovered that they increased sales by 27% in Brazil and 75% in Germany.
The strategy process model is an action plan representing a logical sequence of all the critical actions required to develop an e-business strategy. It consists of five main elements or steps – environment scanning, statement of vision and objectives, finding, evaluating, and selecting strategic options, strategy implementation, control over effectiveness achieved. In the presented scenario, it can be assumed that e-commerce companies that entered the market with additional goods, promotions, and offers during the 2014 World Cup went through all these five stages.
Critics admitted that the three elements of strategy process models adopted by e-commerce companies had a decisive influence on increasing sales. In particular, increased presence on social media and other carefully selected online media channels helped companies to take advantage of the seasonal growth in demand. No less effective was the decision to change the text of advertising messages taking into account the preferences of football fans from nations who took part in the World Cup. Another successful decision was to take into account the time frame of the championship when developing special offers. In particular, fast and free delivery service was beneficial for increasing sales.
In terms of conducting a SWOT analysis, most e-commerce companies probably used the SO e-business strategy, using their existing advantages and focusing on seasonal demand opportunities. It can also be assumed that some companies inferior to competitors in specific characteristics – such as brand recognition or the presence of a customer base – used the WO strategy, utilizing the opportunities created by the World Cup to counter their weaknesses.
In developing the strategy process models, e-commerce companies probably made some critical e-business strategic decisions. These decisions usually concern the choice of e-business channel priorities, creation of market and product development strategies, positioning and differentiation strategies, development of business, service, and revenue models, outlining the marketplace restructuring. There are also critical solutions related to assessing supply-chain management capabilities and identifying internal knowledge management capabilities. According to the scenario, the most effective were the decisions related to choosing the right channel of e-communication, creating a proper positioning strategy, developing service models, and identifying the supply-chain management capabilities.
The e-commerce field is trendy since it provides plenty of opportunities to achieve the highest possible sales level. Therefore, today one can find numerous scientific researches on the development of various e-business strategy process models. Notably, Trejo defines e-business as:
“The integral practice of planning actions to address the market with strategy and tactics using e-business tools for achieving goals aligned with the mission and vision.”
He also mentions that e-business utilizes tools like e-media, e-marketing, and e-commerce in different situations. Further, Stanujkic et al. note that it is impossible to imagine a well-functioning online business that does not rely on an e-commerce strategy. Scientists emphasize that e-commerce:
“Defines a plan and approach based on which it is possible to determine the applications of internal and external electronic communications that can support and influence the corporate strategy.”
Thus, researchers agree that without a clear action plan, it is hard to organize e-business.
Other scientists also confirm that e-commerce has become common nowadays and, therefore, can have a significant impact on many companies. In particular, Saura et al. emphasize that:
“The internal structure and organization of companies has changed to evolve towards a digital environment influenced by internet business models and digital marketing techniques.”
Sanaei and Sobhani also discuss the success and competitiveness of e-business marketing; however, paying attention to some nuances.
Scientists believe that when developing an e-business strategy, one must be careful about the problems that occur “due to the use of constant strategies while the e-business environment is dynamic.” Besides, according to Sanaei and Sobhani, technology, information systems, risk management, and compliance are the main factors for developing the e-business strategy process model. Thus, scientists reinforce the opinion regarding the importance of using e-business strategy process models and expand the understanding of developing such a strategy. The advice of scientists can be useful for e-commerce companies from the scenario, who used the opportunities of seasonal demand so effectively.