E-commerce and the Different E-commerce Technologies
E-commerce/electronic commerce is online transaction that includes buying and selling. It is based on different types of technology such as the following:-
(a) The Supply Chain Management
(b) The Inventory Management Systems
(c) The Internet Marketing
(d) The Automated Data Collection Systems
(e) The Electronic Funds Transfer
(f) The Electronic Data Interchange
(g) The Mobile Commerce
(h) The online transaction processing
It is also of different types or forms and each has certain distinguishing features:-
(a) B2B/Business-to-Business: This involves companies such as wholesalers and producers and comprises of the transaction of goods and services.
(b) B2C/Business-to-Consumer: This comprises of contacts and relationships established by businesses with their corresponding customers and include retail-related trade.
(c) C2C/Consumer-to-Consumer: This includes a third-party, that is the online platform, and through which transaction of goods and services between consumers takes place.
(d) C2B/Consumer-to-Business: This involves individuals making their products or services available for purchase by specific companies wanting them and includes “crowdsourcing projects”.
(e) B2A/Business-to-Administrator: This includes services like social security, and transactions take place between companies and the public administration through for instance “e-government”.
(f) C2A/Consumer-to-Administrator: This includes transactions between individual consumers and the public administration in areas such as taxes, health, and education.
Innovative E-Commerce Technology Options:
These are aimed at increasing sales through constant improvements in and maintenance of high standards for customer experience. They include the following:-
(1) The Drones: Product delivery through drones is becoming more popular due to the speed with which they can accomplish the task. Companies hope to shorten the delivery time to the same day or even the same hour.
(2) The Droids: Delivery through droids is also faster and as they use pavements/sidewalks they avoid delays caused by traffic lights and parking. Due to inbuilt microphones, a two-way communication can be maintained with the customer as well.
(3) The Augmented Reality Technology: This assists customers via goggles/headsets to see (virtually), what products like a garment or furniture might look like. This provides a preview and customers can make any necessary adjustments or additions. They can see the final result before actually buying it.
(4) The Smart Refrigerators: These come with several innovative and time-saving options. They allow customers to make and leave notes, recipes, voice instructions, and shopping lists. Customers can also watch television or the day’s weather forecast and update their digital calendars. They can add photographs, listen to music and get a camera view of their refrigerator’s contents. When necessary, they can order the required items from the refrigerator display, without having to physically go to the shops. Such refrigerators can also give regular updates on items that are running low or expiring. It can accordingly generate shopping lists and order only the selected items for online-purchase.
(5) Other innovative options: These are the smart buttons, the one-click checkouts, and the e-wallets.
Thus e-commerce is present everywhere in diverse forms and includes online businesses like shopping websites such as Urban Ladder. It has several advantages, including the fact that virtual stores in the form of global markets are available to consumers. It allows customers to have an unlimited choice and select the best supplier after thorough comparison. A direct link is established between suppliers and consumers, enabling the former to take into consideration preferences of the latter. This results in increase in productivity for suppliers and the quality of service provided to consumers. Consumers also benefit greatly from vastly improved pre-sales support and post-sales support and round-the-clock-access to a wide range of products/services.