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Sunday - May 21, 2000

Irish Companies Need to Improve eMarketing

Despite heavy use of the Internet and email, Irish companies are not successfully adopting online marketing strategies.

According to a new report from NewWorld Commerce and the Irish Marketing Institute, 87 percent of Irish companies have corporate websites and 82 percent have email for all employees.

Less than a quarter, however, use viral, affiliate and anticipated marketing programmes.

About 80 percent of Irish companies communicate with customers via email and their average expenditure on email marketing is IEP32,160. Only 18 percent have email addresses for more than 80 percent of their customers.

One in 5 Irish companies have used bulk email marketing programs and 11 percent have used permission based email. About 15 percent have a subscription based email service for communicating with potential and actual customers and only 1 in 10 of those offer personalised content.

Although 56 percent say they have used offline media effectively to drive traffic to their sites, less than 10 percent say they are "adept" at driving traffic. 44 percent of respondents said traffic to their ecommerce sites is not enough to produce good return on investment.

Just over 25 percent of Irish companies have a specific ecommerce presence on the Internet but only a quarter of those recommend other products and services to visitors, based on buyer preferences. Only 23 percent of Irish ecommerce sites offer multiple language support.

More than two thirds do not allow site visitors to 'opt in' to future marketing information but only 9 percent have a refer a friend button and only 12 percent conduct online customer or partner satisfaction surveys.

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