Online Goods & Services

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  • Created by: Isabel N
  • Created on: 17-05-16 18:26

Online Shops and Physical Goods

  • Advantages: Large choice, shop from home, price comparisons, stores open 24/7
  • Disadvantages: Internet access needed, wait for delivery, need a credit/debit card, can only view online.
  • Third Party Payments also available - online payment facilities.
  • hen the customer makes a payment, they need to type in the card number, expiry date and name on the card. this can be risky - need to make sure site is secure, or card details may be used for fraudulent purposes.
  • Most banks ask for onlne payments to be checked - when customer attempst to pay, they are asked a security question.
  • Some companies also ask for the security number on the back of the card - CCV (Credit Card Validation) number.
  • When shopping online, always use websites that are secure, and have an SL (Secure Sockets Layer). This technology is used to encrypt data sent between buyer and seller online
  • HTTPS rather than HTTP - means it has an SSL.
  • Encryption: used to transfer data securely across networks. Data transformed into secret code, and a 'key' or special password is needed for reciever to read it.
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Consumer Rights Online & Booking Systems

  • Items can be returned to the seller, although this is not immediate and you often need to send the goods back by post, and online sales can be cancelled, as long as the goods have not been dispatched.
  • Booking Systems: Allow people to book in advance and get the best deals, and airline companies can offer and online check-in service. When a booking is made, the customer usually recieves a confirmation email. When you book something online, the company records your personal data. they take a payment in advance and ask for your passport number - website needs to be secure.
  • Passports: Passport data is valuable - it can identify someone. New passports contain a microchip (RFID - Radio Frequency Identification), which stores all the data about the holder, including a digital copy of their passport photo. More secure, as data cannot be copied and changed. RFID scanned at passport control, and data displayed on a screen. Biometric technology - facial/iris recognition, etc.
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  • Customers can log into their online account and view their balance 24/7
  • Need to set up username and password
  • Can make transactions instantly, and set up regular bill payments
  • No need for credit or debit card, or to be at the bank in person, or for paper statements

Online Security Risks

  • Computer viruses and Trojans: Usually downloaded from the internet, usually hidden in a free download.
  • A virus is a program that replicates itself and spreads. Trojans do not replicate – often seem innocent programs
  • Some Trojans record your password details and send them electronically to hackers
  • To protect a computer from this, anti-virus/malware software must be installed and regularly updated. A firewall can prevent Trojan attacks.
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Transactional Data & Targeted Marketing

Cookies: A tool used by transactional websites

  • Can make messages or adverts automatically appear on a computer. Some websites allow other companies to send cookies to you - usually from marketing companies that want to find out information about you - age, location, email address (valuable - can be sold to companies)
  • If a company want to pass this data on, they should ask permission first. A cookie can record a user's browsing history on the Internet and store passord data (security risk)

Targeted Marketing

  • Allows companies to advertise to large groups of users. Cheaper than traditional adverts
  • Using a search engine - adverts appear at the side
  • Viral Marketing: Campaigns generated on social networking sites/via email - relies on people spreading the word and viewing the content online.
  • Content Network: large group of sites companies use for targeted marketing. Businesses use this method because it allows them to advertise on a site where their target audience will definitely see thir product.
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Education and Training & Gaming

  • Access to course materials 24/7
  • Location does not matter
  • Students able to learn a their own pace
  • Need access to computer and the Internet
  • Can upload/download content/work
  • Good broadband need to watch training videos
  • Can reduce costs for the company


  • Player create unique username and password when setting up online account
  • Need to pay to play
  • many online games have associated online communities and forums
  • Single and multi-player games available
  • Possible to play against opponents around the world
  • Can play 24/7
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News and Information Services & Auctions

  • Most papers and broadcast companies now have websites
  • News articles and videos frequently updated
  • Live streaming of video - watch news as it happens
  • Contibute to forums and make comments about news
  • Recieve instant RSS newsfeeds if you subscribe to the service


  • Users can buy or sell new/second hand goods through a third party website
  • Goods displayed in photos and a text description (can be untruthful)
  • Traders can be rated by users, leading to customer confidence
  • Goods sold within aution time limit
  • Complaints usually handled by auction site company. Consumers have rights.
  • Sometimes good are not delivered on time/may be faulty
  • Sellers may be using the auction to sell stolen goods, and may be fraudulent and recieve payment without providing the goods
  • Payments can be electronically processed via third-party payment
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On Demand Entertanment & Software as a Service

  • Video on Demand (VoD) allows users to watch video whenever they like, via the Internet
  • Free or pay to view
  • Streamed through set-top box or through a computer
  • Computer can display VoD on TV screen if connected by a cable
  • Video can be downloaded for future viewing, and can be replayed as required
  • Some companies allow video stream for free, if they already pay a monthly subscription fee

Software as a Service

  • Hosted Software Applications - on servers accessed via the internet
  • No need to install on local computer - less memory/skill required
  • Can be accessed from different locations if user has Internet and a password
  • Usually cheaper, and often comes with a free trial
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Software Download & Data Storage

  • Users may download a software application from the supplier's website
  • Payment for this is made online
  • Usually download copy only
  • Can upgrade via the internet
  • If software is lost, user can download it again at not extra cost
  • More choice of applications than a shop

Data Storage

Local Storage: Data kept on hard drive (limited capacity), no need for Internet, can only be accessed on that computer, data would need to be backed up physically, data protected locally.

Online Storage: Data stored virtually, by a hosting company, access to data needs Internet connection, data posted and backed up by hosting company, can be accessed anywhere

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Open Source Software & Search Engines

  • Available to download as a code
  • Able to change and improve it
  • More flexible than ordinary software
  • Usually free of charge
  • Seen as collaborative product

A search engine is a computer program.

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