E-commerce is the buying and selling of goods or services over electronic systems such as the internet. This form of commerce allows buyers to purchase items from all over the world, without having to go there physically. It has completely revolutionized the way things are bought and sold today.
There are many online sources that provide information about E-commerce, which is an opportunity for small businesses to sell their products. According to this source, “E-commerce is the electronic commerce conducted over computer networks, such as the Internet”. This form of selling not only provides opportunities for people in all regions but also benefits businesses by saving time and money.
Types of E-Commerce:
There are 4 types of eCom described below.
- The first type of E-commerce is known as B2B or business to business, which usually takes place between large companies who supply products for each other.
- The second type is known as B2C, also known as business to consumer, where businesses sell products directly to consumers without involving retailers in between.
- The third type can be explained by using Amazon’s affiliate program. Sellers use this eCommerce store’s software development kit (SDK) to build their own online stores. They are given the ability to customize themes and widgets, which appear on these eCommerce store’s pages. Sellers also have access to all of Amazon’s products that can be directly linked inside any custom theme or widget they develop.
- The fourth type is known as C2C, meaning consumer to consumer. This type refers to customers who sell items among one another through auction sites such as eBay.
Technology and Payment Gateways for E-Commerce:
One cannot ignore technology when defining Ecommerce; without technology, E-commerce would not exist. It is defined as “commercial activity conducted over the Internet” (E-Commerce, 2014). A definition of technology can be found in Business Dictionary by stating that it is “the creation and manipulation of electronic data to produce beneficial outcomes through its practical application”.
The most common way people do e-commerce transactions is via credit cards or online payment systems like PayPal.
It has become increasingly popular for sellers to look into accepting Bitcoin. Some vendors will only accept Bitcoin or Cash On Delivery where payment is made when goods are actually received; some merchants sell items at a discount price when paying with Bitcoin.
Since E-commerce is an extremely convenient way for customers to shop, one can expect a lot of people to search online for goods. This will lead to a lot of competition between vendors where the price is a major factor in attracting consumers.
There are several companies that conduct electronic trade. For example, Amazon shops provide customers with books and other items in exchange for cash or credit cards transactions. Customers can buy items at any time they want through their personal computers or mobile devices.
Vendors set up accounts with these E-commerce companies, and all of the transactions are conducted online. In addition, these companies provide detailed reports for customers to access their accounts. This is beneficial for businesses because they can track their transactions from anywhere through an internet connection.
In contrast with brick and mortar stores that have a physical presence in the community, E-commerce companies create virtual storefronts on e-commerce sites such as Amazon or eBay where people can buy items online without ever stepping foot inside a physical store.
Technically speaking, E-commerce refers simply to any transaction made on the Internet using electronic payments systems such as credit or debit cards instead of cash, check money orders or other forms of payment.