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An interesting article appeared recently on AdAge.com.  Apparently the major U.S. pizza chains now do around 20% to 30% of their business online, but are keen to make that figure climb a lot higher.

While this story clearly relates to consumer markets and may not have any obvious relevance to b-to-b organizations, the reasons why these pizza chains are so keen to improve and increase their online transactions are of potential interest to companies across the board.

The online customers of the major pizza chains spend more and are more satisfied than non-online customers.  Those who order their food online are also more likely to take advantage of special promotions used to drive interest in new products.  As an added bonus, serving online customers is more efficient for each individual store.

Pizza Hut expects to do $1 billion in online sales by the end of 2012, which would be an immense increase from $100 million in May 2007.  Domino’s, meanwhile, claims that its average online buyer spends $2 more than its customers who order by phone or in person.

According to Google’s director of local and B-to-B markets, the major pizza chains have all been quick to take advantage of shifting spending from traditional media to banner ads and search engine optimization.

They are also constantly looking for ways to help their customers place their orders more quickly – whether they are first-time users setting up an account or return visitors wishing to repeat a past order.

So, while you may not be looking to sell pizzas, their experiences may give you some food for thought.

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