The Kiowa Quality Smokes website will be our newest distribution channel that will carry us forward and increase our client base in a shrinking market. Many people search the Internet for hard-to-find items and Kiowa plans to capitalize on this trend.
The Kiowa website needs to be a simple yet classy and well designed website that, at the same time, is in keeping with the latest trends and products in the tobacco industry. A site that is too flashy, or tries to use too much of the latest Shockwave or Flash technology can be over done, and cause potential clients to look elsewhere for online distributors.
The key to the website strategy will be combining a very well designed front end, with a back end capable of responding quickly and efficiently to our online customer's orders.
6.1 Website Marketing Strategy
Marketing in an Internet retail business depends on recognition for expertise. Once customers have arrived at our website, we will have a classy website that will leverage the company's long career as a specialty smoke shop to inspire confidence in our products and services.
Initial marketing starts with our existing store front customer base, informing them of our Internet presence and encouraging their word-of-mouth recommendations to others. In addition we will create a database of website customers so that we can regularly contact them concerning promotions and other sales events.
Once we have informed our client about our online presence, we will use an aggressive search engine positioning program. We use the database to make regular contact with email newsletters and notices about new products we carry, special offers, or activities we're sponsoring.
6.2 Development Requirements
The Kiowa Quality Smokes website will be initially developed with few technical resources. A simple hosting provider, Alta Vista Web services, will host the site and provide the technical back end.
Kiowa will work with a contracted user interface designer to develop the simple, classy, yet Internet focused site. The user interface designer will work with a graphic artist to come up with the website logo, and the website graphics.
The maintenance of the site will be done by the our contracted designer, as Kiowa does not possess the capability to do so in-house. Our online ordering system will use industry standard software for tracking and shipping. We anticipate that any new distribution channel will increase overall inventory and handling costs. To reduce this impact on Kiowa's business we have secured contracts with our major suppliers to provide us with just-in-time delivery services.