ITS 380-001 Global E-Commerce Systems

Xueying Mei

CH4 – Building an E-commerce Presence: Websites, Mobile Sites, and Apps


P.248   Case Study Questions:

Q1: Why did Dick's decide to leave eBay and take over its own e-commerce operations?

        Answer: Dick’s revenues began slowing down in 2014 and 2015, and due to eBay’s fixed commission on all online products sold, it began reaching unreasonable costs. During this time many large businesses began taking over their own e-commerce operations in order to minimize these expenses. This migration is a difficult one though because it is hard to customize software and services, but once done it is beneficial in standing out from other vendors. By 2017 Dick’s moved to independent e-commerce operations and rapidly increasing sales allowed the budget to undertake this transition. Total control of e-commerce operations allowed Dick’s to provide better support for their omnichannel features as well.


Q2: What is Dick's omnichannel strategy?

        Answer: Dick’s omnichannel strategy is making their physical stores just like distribution centers, means taking online orders from local and regional customers through physical stores. These physical stores act like product showrooms and customers can give their online orders and pick up orders from physical stores the same day.


Q3: What are the three steps in Dick's migration to its new website?

        Answer: The process has three steps: First, in 2004, Dick’s completed development of its e-commerce platform and integrating its existing systems. Second, in 2005, Dick’s began moving two of its lesser brands, Field & Stream and GolfGalaxy, onto the platform and continued development work on the e-commerce platform. Lastly, in 2016 and 2017, the company plans to relaunch its flagship Dick’s Sporting Goods site on the platform. Dick’s has launched its smaller sites one at a time to ensure that there are no major issues with any aspects of the platform.


Q4: What are the primary benefits of Dick's new system?

        Answer: The primary benefits of Dick’s new system include the ability to buy online and pick up in store and the ability to test different pricing and marketing approaches by region. It also helps improving search engine and better analysis capabilities. They want to get higher sales because multi-channel customers spend three times as much as single-channel customers. Finally, the new system allows Dick’s to speed up the innovation and development cycles of its online and physical store operation.

P.251   Projects:

Q2: Visit several e-commerce sites, not including those mentioned in this chapter, and evaluate the effectiveness of the sites according to the eight basic criteria/functionalities listed in Table 4.11. Choose one site you feel does an excellent job on all the aspects of an effective site and create a Power Point or similar presentation, including screen shots, to support your choice.


-       Amazon - US-based popular online marketplace.

-       Alibaba - China-based supplier B2B marketplace

-       e-Bay - US- and Australia-based online marketplace

Amazon and eBay are also dominant in the online retailing market through strong customer relationships made through exploiting their digital assets.

Description of Amazon: (

·         Presence of extensive stylesheet found in CSS

·         Search field present in forms

·         Links to other products present in hyperlinks and JavaScript

·         Site name and description in metadata

·         Images used for various functions present in pictures

·         Social media integrated in metadata

·         Linked to Partner Sites in hyperlinks

·         Shopping cart present in hyperlinks

·         Registered under Amazon domain name in Server Information •

·         Membership login present in pictures section

·         No indication of site broadcasting within extracted data

·         Review links present

·         No indication of region redirection or language support within extracted data


Alibaba: (

·         Search field present in forms section

·         Links to other products and categories present in hyperlinks

·         Presence of stylesheet and colour scheme in CSS

·         Site name in metadata

·         Images used for various functions present in pictures

·         Links to partner websites found in hyperlinks

·         Domain name and registered site address consistent with Alibaba

·         User login

·         VIP membership present

·         No indication of site broadcasting within extracted data

·         Locale and language detected


E-Bay: (

·         Search present in forms

·         Formatting and presentation done with JavaScript and CSS

·         Links to other products and categories in hyperlinks

·         Site name and description in metadata

·         Images used for various functions present in pictures

·         Social media integrated with hyperlinks

·         Linked to partner websites in hyperlinks

·         User login present in JavaScript

·         Registered domain name consistent with site name as eBay  

·         Shopping cart present in pictures and hyperlinks

·         Paypal available in JavaScript •

·         Banners present in pictures and JavaScript

·         No indication of user community from extracted data

·         Prices displayed in local currency


From the above points we conclude that e-bay is the most excellent site.


Q3: Imagine that you are in charge of developing a fast-growing startup's e-commerce presence. Consider your options for building the company's e-commerce presence in-house with existing staff, or outsourcing the entire operation. Decide which strategy you believe is in your company's best interest and create a brief presentation outlining your position. Why choose that approach? And what are the estimated associated costs, compared with the alternative? (You'll need to make some educated guesses here-don't worry about being exact.)


As the head of information technology for a fast-growth e-commerce start-up it is somewhat typical to decide whether to build the site in-house with existing staff or outsourcing the complete operation because there are advantages and drawbacks for both the strategies.

If the development is done in-house, it will be easy for an organization to continue towards the system development and observe the overall system growth. The plans can be changed easily and system development and its growth will be completely dependent on the organization managers and development division.

If the development is done by outsourcing operation, it would become difficult for an organization to have complete control over the system and is required to pre plan everything and discuss with their advisors, always it is needed to come out with the cost arrangement so that it is time consuming.

So as the head of information technology, I would like to select in-house development method. It is also useful in preparing the actions on time and helpful in looking out for much improved cost. The team and the cost of the system will be in the control of the organization. This method will help the organization in planning different features and system capabilities up to date and get it implemented properly so that it can be included into the system well on time.