Ecommerce or electronic commerce is transactions or other terms of sale that are performed electronically. This involves purchasing, selling, and exchange of goods or services for the exchange of money using computer networks such as the Internet. Opposing to the popular belief, ecommerce does not only exist on the web. In fact, ecommerce already existed and do well in business-to-business transaction since the 70s via EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) through VANs (Value-Added Networks). Ecommerce can be further broken into four main categories B2B, B2C, C2B, and C2C.
• B2B (Business-to-Business)
B2B definitely deals with companies who are doing business with each other. An example of this is manufacturers who are selling their product to distributors, and the wholesalers are selling it to retailers. Thus, the pricing can be based on the number of orders and is frequently up for grabs.
• B2C (Business-to-Consumer)
Business-to-consumer typically involves selling products and services to the general public or consumers through the use of catalogs utilizing shopping cart software. B2B can easily earn a lot of money; on the other hand, B2C is what really in mind in an average customer when it comes to the ecommerce as whole. With the help of ecommerce, you can easily purchase many things at time without having human interaction. An example of these if you are having hard time finding a book, when you need to purchase a customized, high-end computer system, or finding a first class, all-inclusive trip to a tropical paradise island. Thus, ecommerce can help you purchase the products all at the same time.
• C2B (Consumer-to-Business)
An example of C2B is when a consumer posts his projects or assignments in the Internet and web site. The consumer sets a budget online where within hours many companies reviews the requirements needed by the consumer and then bid on the project. It empowers the customers around the globe by providing the meeting ground and platform for that certain transaction.
• C2C (Consumer-to-Consumer)
A very good example for C2C is the eBay. It is where consumers sell their products to other consumers through bidding. Thus, the one who bids the highest can buy the product. Another example is the sites offering free classified ads, auctions, and forums where consumers can buy and sell products to other consumers. They use PayPal as a tool for online payment system where they can send and receive money with ease through online.
There is another form of ecommerce which is the B2E or Business-to-Employee ecommerce. Here, companies are using internal networks to offer their employees products and services online. It may not be necessarily online on the Web.
The other forms of ecommerce are the G2G (Government-to-Government), G2E (Government-to-Employee), G2B (Government-to-Business), B2G (Business-to Government), G2C (Government-to-Citizen), C2G (Citizen-to-Government). These transactions involves mainly with the government, from procurement to filing taxes to business registration to renewing license. There are still plenty of other categories that exist but then they tend to be superfluous.