Description of eCommerce
What is eCommerce?
eCommerce is also known as electronic commerce or internet commerce, refers to the buying and selling of goods or services online.
It can also be described as the kind of commercial transaction for any type of business that involves the transfer of information across the internet. eCommerce has rapidly expanded across the world in the past few years. The main reason for this rapid growth was because of the easy access of internet to the people.
eCommerce is a faster, cheaper and more convenient means of shopping today rather than the traditional methods. eCommerce has also led to the development of large online marketplaces where suppliers and customers are brought together on the same platform to conduct trade.
eCommerce has evolved over the years to make discovery and purchase of products easier through online retailers and marketplaces. Any business from small scale to large scale can easily sell its products and services on eCommerce platforms in a cost-efficient manner.
Types of eCommerce Store based on what they sell
A store that sells physical or digital goods
These are the online businesses which operate on the buying and selling of physical products through eCommerce platforms. Few kinds of businesses that sell physical products are apparel stores, accessories store, toys, electronics, etc. Basically when the product order is placed, the online store ships the order to the shipping address with the implementation of proper logistics.
A store that sells services
These are the service based businesses which can also be bought and sold online. Some examples of service-based businesses are online consultants, educators, freelancers, etc. The buying process for services depends on the merchant. Some may allow you to purchase their services straightaway from their website or platform. An example of this comes from Fiverr.com, a freelance marketplace.
Types of eCommerce
The eCommerce field is really large and there are a lot of different models.
- According to Commercial profile
- According to business model
- According to commercial profile
Each business has a type of client and depending on that, it can be classified:
Businesses whose clients are other businesses or organizations and they conduct transactions between each other are known to be B2b model.
For Example, consider a software development company selling its ERP software to a retailer.
Businesses who sell it’s products and services directly to the consumers and a valid transaction happen between them are usually known as B2C model.
For example, shopping stores, electronic store, restaurants, etc.
C2C eCommerce occurs when the two consumers buy or sell any product or service between them. C2C takes place on online marketplaces such as eBay or any second-hand website.
Consumer to business ecommerce happens when a consumer sells or contributes monetary value to a business. For example, the websites for freelancers.
- According to the business model
The online sector is always changing and new businesses are emerging to meet the needs of the people.
Online Shop is one of the most common ways to start an eCommerce business. Just create a website and sell your projects and services online. Many brick and mortar shops are being shifted to online shopping every day. The right solution will depend on the merchant and its consumers and their products.
For example Magento, Demandware, Shopify, WooCommerce, etc.
In this, the difference is that is not the eCommerce shop. The difference is that it is not the eCOmmerce shop seller and who sends the product, but a third party is involved in it.
Drop shipping is a retail fulfillment method where a store doesn’t keep the products it sells in stock. Instead, when a store sells a product, it purchases the item from a third party and has it shipped directly to the customer. As a result, the merchant never sees or handles the product.
Affiliate eCommerce is a promotional model that connects merchants with independent marketers who are willing to invest time and money to sell a merchant’s products.
Ecommerce transactions can also take place on online marketplaces — sites that facilitate transactions between merchants and customers. It comprises of different sellers that offer their product from one or more sectors. Many online marketplaces don’t own inventory; rather, they just connect buyers and sellers and give them a platform on which to do business. Some top marketplaces on the web are Amazon, eBay, Fiver, etc. eCommerce transaction can also take place on the entire marketplace online.
Steps involved in launching an eCommerce
Online business is booming and Ecommerce is the way to go for any growing business. You have a product you want to sell or a great business idea. Building an Ecommerce website will strengthen the reputation of your business, help you expand your brand nationally and internationally, and expand your professional network.
To ensure success while building an Ecommerce website, start with planning and strategy.
As you have the idea for an eCommerce store, then you must also have some goals and targets that you would want to accomplish. Determine the things that you’ll need for the growth of your business. Be sure to make long term decisions for your business, for example, you can create a 1 year or 2 years plan with some goals and objective that you must achieve in the time interval.
If you do not know what products to sell or you do not know where to get them from, you should think about drop-shipping. It is a method of sourcing your products from a vendor and selling them on your own website. Or you can work with a wholesaler or hire someone to make the product for you if you are not able to make the product.
Develop your website
You must prepare a website layout and logo concept for your eCommerce store. Look for best CMS available like Opencart and Magento to build your website. The platforms have a wide variety of themes. you can choose from them. After installing the theme, you can add different pages and content that you would require in the online store. While you build the website, keep in mind the perspective of your customer and even take opinions from them.
Marketing Your Website
Once you have the website ready, you need to promote and market it so that customers visit your site to purchase from you. If you want to start generating sales immediately, launch a Facebook ads campaign that also includes Instagram. You can also use influencer marketing to drive conversions as soon as you launch. While your marketing plan should also include long-term components like search engine optimization, you need to focus on generating sales and revenue right out of the gate if you want to scale quickly.
eCommerce Success Stories
it’s one of the most successful ecommerce businesses in the world. Aside from a thriving marketplace featuring third-party sellers, Amazon also has massive revenue coming in from its Prime membership, as well as subsidiaries such as Amazon Web Services and Zappos.com
4 Pillars of Amazon’s Success.
- Be customer centric-
- Be Creative
- Be Focused on Customer Experience
- Continuously Improve and optimize
Birchbox offers a subscription in which the company charges it’s members with $10 a month to receive a personalized mix of hair, makeup, skincare, and fragrance sample. Birchbox also has an online shop that allows customers to purchase full-sized products.
Reasons for BirchBox success
The company uses data very effectively. It takes subscriber review of each item and uses that information to offer customers with the best-suited products. Unlike most of their competitors, Birchbox allows its members to buy full-size products rather than just samples.
Zappos is an online shoe and apparel retailer based in Las Vegas and is currently owned by Amazon.
What makes Zappos successful
Zappos is widely known for its excellent customer service. It’s one of the core values which it always keeps every time through its employees.
Well, these were the few success stories of eCommerce stores. Now, let’s have look at the biggest fails in the industry.
Boo.com was a UK-based clothing and cosmetics e-tailer that failed in just 2years after its launch.
Why Boo.com failed?
eToys.com was an online toy retailer which was launched in 1997 and then failed due to bankruptcy in 2001.
Why eToys.com failed
eToys had tried to expand too fast and also incurred high operating expenses. Because of the market conditions following the dot-com bubble, eToys failed to obtain capital that would allow it to continue operations.
Toygaroo was an online toy rental service that was founded in 2010. Toygaroo enabled parents to rent toys for a period and then give them back. Toygaroo failed due to bankruptcy in 2012 and eventually got shut down.
Why Toygaroo failed?
The company faced problems dealing with its rapid growth and executing its business model. Toygaroo had trouble scaling the business. Explosive growth is a difficult thing to handle for small businesses.
Well, we have discussed the description of eCommerce in details which include the type of eCommerce store based on what they sell, how eCommerce can be classified, and what are the steps involved in launching an eCommerce store. Furthermore, there are stories of success and failure of various eCommerce stores which gives a little insight into what practices one should follow for the success of an eCommerce store.
If you are thinking of launching your own eCommerce store then this post might just help you to start your journey towards a positive and successful path.
And if you need additional advice or insights, we’re here to help. Get in touch, and we’ll see how we can help you take your ecommerce business to the next level.