E-businesses must win customers’ trust

Speaking at Comdex Fall 2000 in Las Vegas, Brown said that successful e-business was ‘about enabling relationships, not just transactions’. He said that many failures were a result of businesses neglecting this relationship building.

‘I believe the industry has been so consumed with chasing the e-space in a rush to build the next big website, that we have lost sight of the basic business fundamentals – the big picture. We had the glitz but missed the guts,’ he said.

Brown explained that establishing consumer trust was one of four key principles to successful e-business. He also cited eliminating boundaries between customers and suppliers, increasing collaboration with partners and suppliers, and continually seeking improvements.

‘You must know your customers and they must trust that their information is secure with you. We’ve got to earn our customers’ trust so they’ll permit us to continue serving them,’ said Brown.

‘Organisations worldwide must go on the offensive to protect their businesses. An ounce of protection is worth a pound of cure. It will take industry and government from around the world working hand in hand to protect what is ours,’ he added.

Brown stressed that companies must form partnerships to survive. ‘Community companies win over standalone companies. A startup cannot survive today unless it partners from the get up,’ he said, adding that this rule applied to both startups and established businesses.

Ebusinesses should continuously seek improvements, Brown added. ‘Great organisations look beyond the horizon. Static business models are doomed – you’ve got to embrace speed and make it a core value. A company that’s not fast is not good,’ he said.

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