The influence of e- marketing on the performance of tour firms in Kenya
Electronic marketing has become central to efficient operation of most industrialized nations in the past few years. Individuals use the Internet for several reasons including social interaction, obtaining information, and purchasing goods and services. Currently, seventy-eight percent of Internet users utilize the Internet to get information on products or services, and over fifty-four percent purchased products or services online. Given the high competition with the tour firms in Kenya, they offer comprehensive range of complementary services to support the adventurous holidaymakers that ensure they have a safe, enjoyable, and memorable experience. This study sought to establish the influence of e- marketing on the performance of the tour firms in Kenya. The study adopted a descriptive cross sectional design. The target population of this study consisted of consist of all the 116 firms operating in Nairobi. As sample size of 63 tour firms was taken using systematic sampling technique. Primary data was collected using questionnaires with both close-ended and open-ended questions. Respondents for this study were the marketing managers in the various Tour firms or their equivalents. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze the data collected from all the Respondents. The data collected was analyzed and presented in the form of, tables using frequencies, percentages, mean scores and standard deviation. The study found out that half of the tour firms in Nairobi have adopted e-marketing by offering e-product and that the level of consumer satisfaction in tour firms in Nairobi is good and thus e-product has been adopted in and few challenges were faced in adopting e-product in the tour firms. In addition the study established that e-product has great influence on profitability the organization. Moreover the study established that majority of the organizations consider customer satisfaction with on-line service delivery. The study also found out that E-marketing strategy has led to; increased profitability, increased market share, and expansion into new markets. The study concludes that tour firms conduct research before setting a fair price to consumers before placing it on-line and that e-pricing has a moderate effect on sales and that timely delivery of the product increases customer loyalty to a great extent. In addition, e-promotion has great influence on profitability the tour firms as well as e-processing. The study recommended that tour firms in Nairobi ought to review their e-marketing strategies and bridge the existing gaps to gain a higher market share in the tourism industry in Kenya. The study also recommended that tour firms in Nairobi could adopt a hybrid of e-marketing activities in order to remain profitable and competitive. The study also recommends that tour firms in Nairobi could adopt a hybrid of e-marketing activities in order to remain profitable and competitive. Further, the management of tour firms in Nairobi should offer continuous training to the firm employees on e-marketing to equip them with skills that will help them in their mandates. This will assist the firms‟ human resource to work more efficiently and increase their productivity thus increase the firms‟ competitiveness.