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Introduction

As quoted by John Reese “ The Internet is not just a tool for business. Its not just another
form of media. The Internet is becoming our lives” Truly, we now live in a networked
society. The Internet is becoming a necessity to live. The majority of the people around
the globe will very soon vote, work, shop, sell, market, and manage their lives in some
way or the other via internet.
The Internet is far more than just the world wide web. The Web was created in
1989 and became popular in the year 1990s. The Internet is a vast network of networks
that electronically connects millions of people worldwide. It was formed in 1968, when
the Department of Defense created the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) ,
also called the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA). Its first global
computer network, Advance Research Project Agency network (ARPANET), allowed
government and researchers to interact, and to work from any location on the network. It
was specifically designed to function under extreme condition, such as bombing attacks,
severe weather, widespread power failures, and other major disruptions. ARPANET’s
design featured multiple hosts and multiple connections among those hosts, which greatly
reduced the chances of total network failure. There was no central hub, which would have
created a point of vulnerability; rather, control was spread throughout the network. This
decentralization resulted in a robust and reliable network that would continue to function
even if many of the hosts were incapacitated.
In the year 1980s, the department of Defense assigned the ARPA project to the
National Science Foundation (NSF). The NSF increased the number of Super Computers
to five and added access to more networks, expanding the range of sites for businesses,
universities, and government and military installations. The NSF network (NSFNet) ,
plus thousands of others, make up what has become the largest network of networks; the
Internet. In the years that followed, more private companies joined the Internet. The
hardware and communications links required to connect to the internet were funded by a
combination of Private and government money. Despite continued predictions by some
users that increased business involvement would severely disable the Internet, growth has
continued at an astounding rate. Business people everywhere sees that connecting to the
internet via the Web is a good value, and they are willing to fund its phenomenal growth
by paying for better, faster access.
The number of Web Sites doubles every four to five months. At present, the Web
has over 80 million users logging on either through standard internet access accounts or
online services. Utilizing the web becomes a business, small businesses are moving
online with web sites, e-mail marketing, and in some cases, e-commerce transaction sites.
According to eMarketer, a leading Internet research firm, 78% - or 5.9 million of a small
businesses are connected to the internet and nearly half have active web sites. Created in
1989 by the European laboratory for particles physics, the world wide web presents
information through multimedia formats, graphics, text, sound, animation, and video. The
world wide web consortium (W3C), headed by the Laboratory computer Science at the
MIT, promotes standards and encourages interoperability among web products. Funded
by industry members, W3C also works with the global community to produce
specifications and reference software. The web employs several tools, to provide a visual
layouts, hypertext links, browser software, and code structure.
The web offers a rich and varied Selection of resources for gathering market
intelligence information, so how significant is Web Based Marketing to businesses?
At the present state, the answer would vary dramatically for different products and
markets from company to company. For companies like electronics equipment
manufacturer CISCO (www.cisco.com) , the answer is ‘very signaificant’ as because
Cisco now gains over 90 % of its multi billion dollar global revenue online. The company
also functions many of its other business process online. Similarly, the European airline
company, Easyjet (www.easyjet.com) gains 90% of its tickets sales online.