Situation Analysis

A typical e-commerce / e-marketing plan will start with an

  • Analysis of the external environment
  • Analysis of the internal environment
  • SWOT analysis


We have already covered 2 of those 3 points in module 2, Strategic analysis: The analysis of the external environment has been covered by the competitor analysis (2.A.3). The SWOT analysis was discussed in modules 2.A.1/2.A.2 and you prepared it for your business case in module 2.A.6.

So we will only focus on the second point: “analysis of the internal environment”, in order to be able to check your business’ readiness to go for an e-commerce solution.


Analysis of the external environment

Pleace refer here to the analysis of the external environment, already covered by the competitor analysis (module 2.A.3 and implemented in 2.A.6). This matches what is required under this paragraph.


Analysis of the internal environment

This is often called describing the “As-Is” situation. It's an audit in the company to understand those topics which are relevant for our future e-business solution. The domains we cover for an audit are:


  • Current marketing approach
    Investigate/list how marketing is done today


  • Current internet presence
    What is your current internet presence (e.g. website, internet marketing, social media,…)

    Example: "We have a static website with downloadable excel document with current standard product and pricelist. There is a business Facebook page, but we use it only occasionally e.g. after an event to post some photo material"


  • Current resources and skills
    How about the skills and the availability of resources in your company. Document your current resources and their skills. While doing so, mark people in your organization who will be able to take up specific roles related to maintaining the e-commerce solution (for example ICT activities, graphical design, text writing, product catalogue maintenance, order processing,…) You need also to check who is involved in customer orders intake, handling and delivery in the as-is situation. Document where they are located (you will need staff to pick and dispatch orders coming from the e-business platform.

    Example: "We don’t have an ICT professional in our company. We have one person available 20% of her time for communication management and 10% of the time available to maintain the products and descriptions in the ERP system." (Interpretation: this person might be suited for website content management and catalog management of the webshop)


  • Processes and infrastructure to deliver to the customer
    List the relevant processes and infrastructure used to serve the customer.

    Example on a fragment: "We have 3 brick shops, no dedicated warehouse. In case a brick shop is out of stock, we might fetch the product a customer is requesting from another shop. We rarely ship parcels, customers simply come to our shop."


  • ICT landscape
    What is the ICT landscape you are currently using ?  Think of domains such as systems for order intake, billing, production, logistics, inventory, customer relationship ?

    Example: "We have a Microsoft dynamics CRM and a Microsoft Navision ERP system. For bookkeeping Cubic Pro is used."


SWOT analysis

The SWOT analysis you have already studied in modules 2.A.1/2.A.2 and you prepared it for your business case in module 2.A.6.  So refer to that and you are done.