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Table of Contents
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19

Chapter 18:
House of Bikes Case Assignment

Some Background

Fred Merks was dumbfounded. He had spent a lot of money on a so called Web consultant to put up a home page on the Internet for his bike shop. That was six months ago, and what had he gotten for his investment? Zip, nada, zilch. The consultant hadn't promised the moon, since the Internet is still not a mass medium, but he could count on the fingers of both hands the number of new customers the site had brought in. It was like paying for an ad that no one saw, Fred thought ruefully. And since they had put a discount offer on the page, Fred would know if the site had generated any business.

He had to pay a modest amount each month to have his site stay on the Internet, and Fred was thinking about cutting his losses, and pulling the plug on the whole deal. He called the consultant to tell him his worries.

"Hey Fred," came back the cheery voice, "I was just thinking about you."

Fred was in no mood to be cheered up but he resisted the impulse to make a snide remark. Instead, Fred said matter-of-factly, "I don't seem to be getting any new business from the site."

"Oh really? I just ran a log report to see how many hits you have gotten. I will email it to you this afternoon."

Fred was not overly excited about this news, but he resolved to not "pull the plug" on his web site until he had looked over the log report.


A facsimile of Fred's Web Site is available. This is a "simulation" of the actual site.

The email with the log report is also available. The name of each file is taken from the link anchor.

Your Assignment

  1. Look over the hit counts in the email. There seems to be a disconnect between the 200 hits per week, and Fred's memory that less than a dozen people have mentioned the online ad. What do you think is going on?

  2. How would you change or improve Fred's Web site?

  3. What is missing from the referrer pages? What would you expect to see that is not there?

  4. What could E. Heeno do to help this client?

  5. What should Fred Merks do; cut his losses or keep paying money to E. Heeno?

Copyright 1998 by Digital Springs, Inc. All Rights Reserved.