Although research exists on the use of technology in sales, very little addresses the adoption, use, and success of technology in the direct selling industry. In response to this dearth of knowledge, we conducted an exploratory study to examine how direct sellers use technology to link the firm to its customers and its sales force, as well as how technology is used to facilitate interactions between the sales force and customers. In an industry that has historically differentiated itself by face-to-face, personal relationships, we explore the possibly new direct selling environment brought on by the technology revolution. Through in-depth, open-ended interviews, we provide the groundwork for understanding how direct selling firms use technology to develop a competitive advantage while still maintaining strong personal relationships with consumers.

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