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Clear and Unbiased Facts About Ecommerce (Without All the Hype)


What is Ecommerce?

Ecommerce is also known as electronic commerce or internet commerce, which refers to the buying and selling of products and services using the internet and the transfer of money and data to complete these transactions.

Ecommerce is often used to refer to the sales of physical products online, however it can also be used to describe any kind of commercial transaction that is carried out through the internet.

Whist E-Business refers to all aspects of operating an online business, Ecommerce will refer specifically to the transaction of products and services.

History of Ecommerce

The history of Ecommerce starts with the first ever sale made online.

11th August 1994 a man sold a CD by the bank Sting to his friend through his website NetMarket, an American retail platform.

This is the very first example of a consumer buying a product from an online business, through the World-Wide-Web or in other words “Ecommerce” as we know it today.

Ecommerce as developed since then making it easier to sell products and services through online retailers and marketplaces.

  • Independent freelancers
  • Small Businesses
  • Large Corporations

Have all benefited from Ecommerce, which has allowed then to sell their products and services at a scales that was not possible before with the traditional retailing offline.

In 2020 global retail Ecommerce sales are projected to reach $27 trillion. How amazing is that.

Examples of Ecommerce

Ecommerce can be used in many different ways which involve different transactional relationships between consumers and businesses, along with many different products and or services being exchanged as part of these transactions.

1. Retail

Which is the sale of a product directly from a business to a customer without a middleman.

2. Wholesale

Which is the sale of products in bulk.  This is normally a retailer buying in bulk to then sell on directly to their customers.

3. Physical Products

A Physical product that will require physical shipping to a customer when a purchase is made. You will also be required to hold an inventory and replenish stock.

4. Digital Products

Digital products and downloadable products such as e-books, courses, templates and or media that will require a license for use or purchasing before use.

5. Services

This is when a skill or skill sets are provided at a cost. The service provider is exchanging their skill set, time for a fee.

6. Dropshipping

Dropshipping is when the sale of a product is carried out separately from the manufacturer and shipping of the product. This is does through a third party.

7. Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is a collection of money from customers in advance of a product or service being available in order to raise start-up funds that is necessary to get the product or service to market.

8. Subscription

A Subscription is an automatic recurring purchase of a product or service on a regular basis and will continue until the subscriber chooses to cancel.

Type of Ecommerce Models

There are four main types of Ecommerce models that will explain and describe almost every transaction that takes place between businesses and consumers.

1. Business to Consumer (B2C):

This is when a business makes a sale of product or service to an individual customer. Example: You buying a smoothie maker from an online retailer.

2. Business to Business (B2B):

This is when one business sells a product or service to another business. Example: A Business sells software as a service (SaaS) for another business to use.

3. Consumer to Consumer (C2C):

This is when a consumer sell a product or service to another consumer. Example: You sell your used Books on eBay, 4. Amazon to another consumer.

4. Consumer to Business (C2B):

This is when a consumer sells their own products or services to a business or an organisation. Example: A photographer or film maker licenses their photo or film for a business to use.

Discover how to get started online

Thinking of Getting Started Online

If you are interested in finding out more about getting started online you can click HERE.

You may also be interested in checking out this article building your own Ecommerce Store HERE.

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