You are probably wondering what inspired us to write an article regarding e-commerce. Earlier this month, we moderated a seminar on the topic. It went so well that we found our inspiration from it.

First, we must give you a definition of the term. Electronic commerce, or e-commerce, is “a term for any type of business, or commercial transaction that involves the transfer of information across the Internet.” It covers a variety of businesses from auction sites to consumer-based retail sites.

In its basic form, e-commerce permits consumers to exchange goods and services electronically with no time or distance barriers. E-commerce has increasingly expanded in recent years and will only continue to grow. More companies are moving their sales operations to the Internet and more people are purchasing from their home or mobile devices. The truth is, almost any product or service can be bought through e-commerce.

Pros

  • More selection of products and services.
  • Convenience of 7 Days a week, 24 hours a day.

Cons

  • Online photos do not tell the entire story. Might receive something different than you thought.
  • No instant gratification. You have to wait for what you purchase.
  • Lack of customer service.

E-commerce operates in four different market segments: Business to Business, Business to Consumer, Business to Government and Business to Distribution Channel.

Business to Business (B2B)

Business to Business is e-commerce between businesses. There are many competitive advantages to carrying out transactions electronically as opposed to traditional methods. It’s often quicker and less expensive than exchanging goods and service. These are focused on marketing and customer service.

Business to Consumer (B2C)

Business to Consumer refers to e-commerce between a business and a consumer. These e-commerce sites are focused on SEO to target customers from search engines. B2C websites take losses, but make up for them by selling warranties and accessories. These are all about the price of the product or service.

Business to Government (B2G)

As you can assume, Business to Government sites are between a business and a governmental entity. These websites are contract oriented and provided for corporate buyers. Usually, they concentrate on government debit card spending. B2G sites can also handle more than one contract at the same time.

Business to Distribution Channel (B2D)

There are two different types of B2D websites:

  • Distributor to Reseller
  • Manufacturer to Distributor or Sales Network

With these sites, there are often large numbers in the catalog and orders may be for big quantities. Stock status must also be visible on the site.

Final Thoughts

You need to choose a shopping cart software. This is an operating system that allows customers to buy goods or services. Also, you will need a way to accept online payments from consumers, like PayPal for example. In order to receive orders, your marketing or public relations strategies needs to drive targeted traffic to your website as well.

In the end, e-commerce can be exceedingly rewarding. However, you cannot expect results instantaneously. Do your research and ask questions, then make decisions based on your findings. Ultimately, your hard work will pay off in time.

Have a product and are interested in creating e-commerce on your website? We would love to talk to you about it. Contact us today.