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Lesson 6 Customer expectations and the Web interface
Objective Meet your customers’ expectations with archetypes.

Customer Expectations and the Web Interface

You now have a site name and have begun to consider how it can appeal to your audience. A site must be familiar, alluring, and helpful. The issue now arises of what elements you can include to make your site conform to user expectations.
Most customers expect an e-commerce Web site interface (that is, the home page) to present certain standard elements or archetypes.[1]
The archetypes shown in the table below help make the customer's experience more interesting and help generate repeat visits.

Customer expectations and the Web interface

Any number of value-added services and business features may be integrated into your site.
Some examples of these are shown in the Slide Show below.


Archetypes Web Interface
Take special note of CRM applications. CRM software allows you to discover the cost-effectiveness of the site, track users, and ensure accountability.
  1. WebTrends was one of the first software companies to move in this direction. However, whereas WebTrends software conducts thorough log analysis, companies such as
  2. Hubspot and
  3. Salesforce.com
have provided ways to enhance tracking of customer and client interaction.
Customer relationship management software: CRM software allows you to discover the cost-effectiveness of a site, track users, and ensure accountability.

Business models

Each of the archetypes discussed above partakes in two basic communication strategies:
  1. Business-to-business: These transactions generally involve low-cost, high-volume transactions
  2. Business-to-consumer: Transactions of this nature vary widely in both volume and cost
Before you implement an e-commerce site, you should determine the exact nature of the business to determine which type of e-commerce solution it requires.
In the next lesson, you will develop a storyboard to outline your plans.

[1] Archetypes: Services and options that most e-commerce customers expect. These include shopping carts, free email, stock quotes, and simultaneous help desk support.