Sample Sidebar Module

This is a sample module published to the sidebar_top position, using the -sidebar module class suffix. There is also a sidebar_bottom position below the menu.

Sample Sidebar Module

This is a sample module published to the sidebar_bottom position, using the -sidebar module class suffix. There is also a sidebar_top position below the search.
2.2 Business Marketing
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Online business is a business that sells products or services using the internet. It is also known as an E-Commerce store. E-commerce stores sell products to customers online. These stores are often:

    • Linked with courier services that move goods to the purchaser
    • Linked with online banking services for transfer of money
    • Accessible on the internet (websites) 24 hours per day around the globe
    • Selling goods and services that are not commonly available in stores in Alberta 
    • Selling products or services at a lower price than a neighborhood store

E-commerce stores are rapidly growing, as they are convenient, cheap, and easy to access. Opening an E-Commerce store has advantages. The business can reach customers from the comfort of their homes. This business requires:

    1. Online capacity: a business website, use of servers, strong online marketing
    2. Inventory
    3. Relationships with courier and shipping companies
    4. Secure online money transaction links that allow customers to pay with credit cards, e-transfer from bank accounts, PayPal, Cash on Delivery or another means

Knowledge and Skills for an E-Commerce Store Owner

In addition to basic entrepreneurial skills and knowledge, the owner will find it very helpful to know:

    • Basic web design
    • Online marketing
    • Internet security, and
    • Basic computer skills
    • Demand and supply economics
    • Delivery and payment systems

Market research for an E-Commerce business is different from a shop. Some of the areas to consider

To make my E-Commerce Business successful I need to consider the following points:

    1. Sell something original
    2. Know the reasons why a customer will buy my products when there are 100 other similar online choices
    3. Know my online competition and the sites they use for advertising. I may choose the same sites to have direct competition.
    4. Offer a user-friendly purchasing process. My online store is easy to navigate and fun to share.
    5. Be responsive and provide great customer service
    6. Choose a name that is short, catchy, and easy to remember. If my planned name is taken I will get creative. I can spell numbers out, add a small extra word, or add a hyphen.
    7. Make a website that is not too flashy and is customer-friendly to make purchasing easy. I plan to have to purchase easily available by making no more than two clicks to the checkout
    8. Satisfy customers with good digital security
    9. Set up an account with a financial institution so that my customers can pay with a credit card
    10. Keep my prices low so that more customers will come
    11. Offer fast shipping at a low cost 
    12. Keep planning. I know that the safety of customers, flexibility, and scalability of my E-Commerce store are factors that will affect my long terms success
    13. Consider training and investment in reliable software

Steps to Start an E-Commerce Business

      • Like any other business, an E-Commerce business must start with registration, permits and other relevant steps. For details, review the main section of the tool 
      • Develop a business website. Many E-Commerce markets provide free online website templates such as Amazon and Shopify 
      • At times small and new businesses develop their business social media accounts instead of making complete websites. Facebook also has a market place where the individuals post their products for sale free of cost. These are not formal channels of online E-Commerce stores and are recommended for long term business
      • Many E-Commerce businesses need an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. ERP systems keep real-time exchange and recording of billing information, transfer of money, and tracking of inventory and orders. It is recommended to get technical support to develop this system from any software developer 

Many E-Commerce businesses connect with the online marketplace to make their products available beyond their website. People prefer to buy from market places because:

        1. A larger collection of products are searchable because there is more than one seller
        2. Buyers can compare prices
        3. The process of ordering is customer friendly
        4. Most market places provide free shipping

If an E-Commerce business does use a market place, a selection must be made. Each market place has its own customer base, rules, and policies, commission fees, and customer expectations. The selection of the market place depends on the need and scale of the business. 

If an E-Commerce business does not use a market place, it needs to establish a payment collection system. External support to provide technical work can be hired for the initial period

PayPalSquareAmazonVisa, MasterCard, Apple Pay, Google Pay

Charges 2.95 plus 0.30 cents

2.75% flat fee below $ 3,000 2.9% plus 0.30 cents, above $3,000 rates drop Rates Vary

The Top Six Marketplaces in Canada operates one of the largest marketplaces in Canada.  Sellers can benefit from an established brand like Amazon.

This company started its business as an auction company but now they have expanded as a proper market. This is the oldest online market. They also accept PayPal Best buy is a well-established retail brand with store locations across Canada. They provide training and professional help to new eCommerce businesses.

$ 2/item to $ 30/month

$19.95/month to $ 349.95/month Varies

This marketplace charges a commission on sales. They claim to be the cheapest market in Canada.

This is the market place of handmade products. This marketplace also helps to develop a dedicated website using templates This is one of the most innovative Canada based online sales company. This platform is famous for using the most reliable and advance e-commerce technical solutions. They also provide 14 days free trial for new comers.

8% to 15% on sales

$0.26 listing fee of each item
5% transaction fee
3%-4% + $0.25 payment processing fee
$ 29 + 2.9% & 30 ¢ for each transactions basic package
$ 79 + 2.6% & 30¢ for each transactions shopify package
$ 299+2.4% & 30¢ for each transaction advance shopify package
$ 2000+ 2.15% & 30¢ for each transaction shopify plus  

The information presented in the table is subject to change by the service provider. Check websites for latest updates.

When any business person shares information with employees, customers, the government, or any other person, the exchange of information is called business communication.

The simpler I keep my communication; the better people will understand my business.

Type of Business CommunicationUsePoints to ConsiderExamples

Business name (must have)

  • Identifies the business
  • Positions the business when compared with competitors
  • Keep it simple
  • Easy reading
  • No duplication
  • Easy to remember
  • McDonald's
  • KFC
  • Amazon
Type of Business CommunicationUsePoints to ConsiderExamples

Website URL (good to have)

  • For external communication
  • For customers to find you
  • For online business
  • Keep it simple
  • Have enough information for anyone visiting your website

Type of Business CommunicationUsePoints to ConsiderExamples

Office stationery (good to have)

  • For external communication
  • For brand visibility
  • For marketing
  • Keep it simple
  • Do not overprint the stationary
  • Always finalize your stationary after registration of your business
  • Letterhead
  • Business cards
  • Logo color and design
  • Official font
  • Official colours

Business Communication-Writing Emails

  1. Canada has a strict law about email use. The law is called CASL (Canada’s Anti-Spam Law). This law applies to email and text.
  2. When I email I will keep my emails short.
  3. I will prepare templates for my signature, reply emails, marketing emails, and introductory email. For sample emails and formal letters visit
  4. My email address is very important, as it is the first thing that a person sees when they open their inbox. My email address must match the company name. This shows an email’s source such as, ABC director
  5. My subject line is very important as it causes the reader to decide to open the email or not. I can offer my customers a deal but if I have a poorly written subject line, my customers will not get far enough to read about the deal. Subject lines should be clear and should let customers know what you have to offer them. Examples of subject lines: Best Buy: Free $50 Best Buy Gift Card; Training: How to work smarter, not harder. Tips for good subject lines:
    • Keep it short, 40-50 characters
    • Avoid overuse of punctuation ( i.e. !!!) or symbols
    • Do not write in capital letters
  6. Avoid repeating your email address such as an email from ABC
    The content, which is the main part of my email will be clear and written in simple sentences. I will not write more than two to three paragraphs and my paragraphs will just inform the reader about 1 idea. I will try to make sure I provide information that my readers would like to know. I will always try to draft emails that are error-free.
  7. My email must clarify what action I am expecting from my email readers. Do I want a reply or do I want them to buy my product or service or perhaps subscribe to my newsletter

Tips for good calls to action:

  • Keep it short, not more than five words. A good call to action is two words such as - Buy Now
  • Avoid using difficult words, use simple language
  • Use active language such as Try Our New Service Today
  • Use a timeframe such as - Two Day Sale

General Business Communication Tips

  • Always open and close your business at the set times of your business
  • Be polite to your employees, customers, and suppliers
  • Use polite and professional language
  • Respond to emails and business questions within 48 hours
  • Always be on time for meeting
  • Keep your workplace clean and tidy

Writing for Face to Face Contact Business Communication

I will write down what I want to say to potential customers when I introduce my product or service. This is sometimes called an elevator pitch. Introducing my business during an elevator ride means I will need to be clear and quick. I will teach the staff and my family to use the same language to build word-of-mouth networks. Tips for a good elevator pitch:

  • Listen to elevator pitches on YouTube
  • Identify your goal. Start by thinking about the reason for speaking. Write your goal in different ways and find a short way to communicate it.
  • Explain what you do. Describing what your product or service is and why it is good or helpful
  • The opening should create interest for the listener
  • Keep it short, around 5-7 sentences

General Business Communication Tips

Follow the 7 C principle for the communications

1. Be Complete

A complete message is one that covers all the needed information. For example, a message about a sale is complete when it says where the sale is, date, time and duration of the sale and how to access the sale items and the discounts.

2. Be Concrete

Concrete business communication is about clear messages. Clear messages are an important part of good customer service, such as a no return or exchange policy on sale items. 

3. Be Courteous

Communicate with others in a friendly and courteous manner. For example, apologize for the limited supply of product. 

4. Be Correct

Try to write short sentences to avoid grammar mistakes. Correct use of language is important to customers. 

5. Be Clear

Clear or plain language requires the use of short sentences and specific words. 

6. Be Considerate

Consider your audience. One message can be communicated differently to different types of people. In order to communicate well, it is important to connect with the target group. By keeping the listener or reader in mind, the message can be geared to them. Consider your audience’s professional knowledge, level of education, age and interests.

7. Be Concise

Keep the message simple and short, for example “50% Off on selected items at XX from 23rd July to 31st July 2019”.


Marketing your business is about the ways and means of letting potential customers know about your business. The scale and scope of marketing depend upon the business size.

Which of the following reasons for marketing are true for you:

  • To let my customers know about the name, location, product or service, price, and exceptional features of my business
  • To invite customers to visit my place of business
  • To develop an interest in my business
  • To please my customers

There are different ways to get your business known. These are called marketing channels.   The tables below describe the common channels. I will choose marketing channels for my business and record notes about my business needs.

Social Media and Website

ExamplesAdvantagesImportant Points
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • What's App
  • Twitter
  • YouTube
  • Website, etc.
  • Most social media site are free
  • Canadians like to buy online
  • Youth like social media
  • Using social media does not require high computer skills
  • Websites provide information to all potential customers
  • Requires regular updates
  • Must have most updated information

Business Signboards

ExamplesAdvantagesImportant Points
  • Shop billboards
  • Roadside board
  • Display Advertisement
  • Attract walk-in customers
  • Provides identity to the business
  • Wrong placement can confuse customers
  • Permits from the City of Calgary are needed
  • There is a regular fee, which is approximately $100 - $1,500 per month
  • Keep the signboard designs simple and readable

Flyers, Business Cards

ExamplesAdvantagesImportant Points
  • Flyers and business cards at the business for customers to take for free
  • Flyers and business cards for door-to-door distribution
  • Customers like to have something to read
  • The message goes directly to the customer
  • Dedicated time or cost is required for distribution
  • Competitors may have already been using this way of marketing
  • Customers may not pay attention to the information
  • Approximate cost of 500 business cards is $20, for 100 flyers, the cost is approximately $30

Radio Advertisements

ExamplesAdvantagesImportant Points
  • There are about 28 different radio stations in Calgary
  • Radio listeners are attentive and retain information
  • In Calgary, the cost of making one radio advertisement is between $300 - $1,000
  • The monthly airtime cost of radio advertisement is between $1,200 - $10,000

Newspaper Advertisements

ExamplesAdvantagesImportant Points
  • There are 9 major newspapers publishing daily, weekly, and monthly in Calgary
  • Readers are mostly middle-aged to elderly
  • People read newspapers in the morning when they are active and alert
  • In Calgary, the printing cost of a newspaper advertisement is from $1,000 - $6,000 for one day

Word-of-Mouth, Networks, Events and Trade Shows

ExamplesAdvantagesImportant Points
  • Happy customers tell others about a good product or service. Good customer service can become good marketing
  • The City of Calgary and private companies organize trade shows and events. See Links to Important Websites section
  • Business owners network within their own communities or at conferences and events
  • Strong social networks are important to build your business through word of mouth
  • Trade shows help you understand the industry for which your product or business is related
  • Participate in trade shows and events where new customers can be found

Other Ways to Market

  • Always keep the quality of your product or service higher than your competition
  • Run the business from a place people can easily find and enter
  • Decide whether to give gifts, samples or discounts such as buy one get one free offers or free shopping bags

My ways of marketing