Electronic commerce (frequently called e-commerce) refers to the purchasing and selling of merchandise or services via electronic systems like computer networks and the Internet. E-commerce is dependent on technologies like automated data compilation methods, systems that watch over inventory, EDI or Electronic Data Interchange, online transaction processing, internet marketing, supply chain management and electronic funds transfer. Modern e-commerce procedures normally take advantage of the Internet during business transactions, but it may also cover a broader array of technologies like the telephone, mobile devices, and e-mail. Here are some fine examples of e-commerce solutions in action:
Image Courtesy of http://www.purenet.co.uk/ecommerce-solutions
Constant flow of new Clients
Those technologies which make starting a business trouble-free and inexpensive are also the reasons why more potential customers are looking for merchandise over the Internet. Thanks to the advent of broadband internet services like cable internet and DSL (Digital Subscriber Line), surfing the World Wide Web on personal computers has never been faster (Thanks to the growing number of companies that manufacture cheaper computer units). These elements also make more individuals computer savvy, widening the age bracket of people who can efficiently surf the Internet. It is interesting to know that anyone can manage their path through cyberspace, regardless of their income bracket or lifestyle.
Entrepreneurs can take advantage of this advancement in global technology and faster lines of communication. A decade or so ago, a tiny retail store could only entice customers to visit and purchase via a road sign. Nowadays, online retailers are able to sell even without a storefront, using only credit cards and delivery carriers like DHL, FedEx or UPS to distribute purchased goods to people across the globe.
The popularity of the Internet allows everything to be virtually sold and bought. An example is the famous auction site known as eBay. Visitors can find, on sale, almost any used item there is in any category. Cyberspace serves as a big virtual mall or open-air bazaar. E-commerce websites can sell furniture, collectibles, financial services, insurance, artwork, jewelry, yachts and real estate. This includes patches of land, timeshares, condominiums, apartments and houses, and automobiles.
Whether it serves a positive or negative purpose, e-commerce transactions can be anonymous. This can be applied to those products that buyers discreetly buy. Companies also use e-commerce to legally sell and protect music and software against counterfeiters.