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Web-based Customer Service and E-Commerce Success: A Malaysian Perspective

By Kamarulzaman Ab. Aziz and Lee Hoong Jon


In a globalized and fast shrinking world, businesses today are faced with unprecedented opportunities as well as challenges. While markets are expanding due to globalisation and advances in technologies, at the same time companies are faced with more sophisticated and demanding customers both in the existing and new markets. It is no longer adequate to rely on traditional barriers of entry and differentiation, when product life cycles are shortened dramatically and barriers of entry eroded quickly. The traditional barriers of time, space and form will be eliminated in the process by the use of technology. With such development happening in the environment, it is undeniable that customer service has become the new battleground for business and Internet is now an important established business channel, which offers real ways to enhance customer relationships. Opportunity to provide highly personalised customer service is made possible by the advent of new Internet technologies. The impetus to look towards customer service as the competitive advantage is driven by the competitive imperatives to create and retain customer by providing world-class service and support. However, the rapid growth of e-commerce in more advanced countries is however not without it's pitfall. The industry is currently experiencing a shakeout, which sees many dot-com companies going out of business as well as numerous mergers and acquisitions taking place. The experiences from these countries should be used to rethink the strategies needed to venture into e-business. Many researches have highlighted the general lack of customer service in the e-commerce implementation. Are the Malaysian firms venturing into e-commerce falling into a similar trap? This paper strives to establish the current outlook of the adoption of Web-based customer service in Malaysia and to look at ways in which businesses can use it to build competitive advantage. This paper also seeks to establish the expectations of the customers in order to develop a more effective Web-based customer service

Year: 2011
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