With the birth of the internet in the 20th century, a new revolution came into being that changed the way we use to perform traditional commerce. This new revolution was termed as E-commerce (electronic commerce).
Ecommerce as we know it is the use of global internet to conduct various transactions related to sales and purchase of goods and services provided. Ecommerce permits the use of electronic communications and allows the access of digital information processing technology in business transaction. Ecommerce enables the paperless exchange of information through various modes namely, Electronic Data Exchange (EDI), Electronic Mail, Electronic Bulletin Boards, Electronic Funds Transfer etc.
It operates in all the major market units. These units are categorized in accordance to the different sectors in which they are utilized i.e.
• Business to Business (B2B),
• Business to Customer (B2C),
• Customer to Customer (C2C), and
• Customer to Business (C2B).
In today’s time almost all the organizations are successful in increasing their customer base through the use of Ecommerce. It is due to the easy access of internet and cost effectiveness factor that most of the firms are able to expand their customer interaction up to international level with minimum capital investment. Ecommerce allows a firm to establish a Brand name and enhance its existing market place.
Journey of Ecommerce in India started in 1996 with the introduction of B2B portals. The two major performing areas were ONLINE TRAVEL and ONLINE RETAIL. The growth of Ecommerce since 1996 can be attributed to the following factors-
• Increase in Broadband Internet Technologies
• Increase in the disposable income of the middle class
• Rise in the standards of living
• Wide range of goods available at a hand click.
• Easy comparison a specific type of products provided by different brands
• Lower prices compared to traditional shopping due to less inventory cost
The Future Ecommerce is here to stay
Humans are not empowered to see the future and yet by keen observance and analysis of the innovations taking place in Ecommerce Sectors our experts have formed such predictions which are totally different from the present scenario. The world of trade is undergoing a phase of remarkable changes. Technological Advancements along with new business models play a pivotal role in influencing the Ecommerce wave.
The experts have given the following predictions-
→Changes in the demands of the future Consumer
In today’s scenario choice of the consumer of Ecommerce is largely driven by price effect. At this point of time very small population are demanding distinctive and exclusive products. The experts have predicted an abnormal increase in the population of those consumers who look for unique and out of the box products within the next ten years. Future services provided by the online retailers would include proactive support service, minimum cost of delivery and that too anytime and anywhere. Due to rise in competition in the Ecommerce sector a lot of burden will be placed on the retailers.
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→Intensification of the desire to shop
According to experts the whole idea of shopping would undergo a change in the near future. The customers will want the retailers to provide an environment in which shopping becomes an eventful affair. This would prove beneficial for the retailer as it would lead increase in goodwill and Brand Value in the market.
→Physical entrance of online stores to the market
A new advent would be seen in the coming years when the online sellers would move out to establish their physical outlet. This particular step would be taken to increase customer satisfaction and to build brand’s goodwill. A new marketing policy such as CLICK-AND-COLLECT model is being adopted which would provide a totally different retail experience.
Traditional Commerce will continue to exist but not as we know it
In the years to come, the physical retail sector will include more of manufacturers and private trademark retailers, with a view of increasing customer base and to popularize brand name. A new criteria of temporary pop up store is likely to become popular in the forth coming years with a view to showcase their products and to satisfy the demands of both manufacturer and consumer.
→Order Fulfillment will be the new domain area of performance appraisal
Order fulfillment on the same day, with even narrower time frame would become a major battleground that would compel the retailers to develop and experiment different Ecommerce models. At this point the CLICK-AND-PICK model would play an important role. In the times to come the Ecommerce retailers are expected to make such partnerships which would allow them to build physical collection points. However home delivery will still prove to be dominant method of receiving online orders.
→M-Commerce will bring the new boom in the payment mechanism
Mobile devices serve as key platforms which provide consumers with the ability to communicate with the Ecommerce retailer at the click of hands. More and more Ecommerce retailer are developing and optimizing their websites for their easy usage on smartphone screens.
Further, it is expected to see substantial growth in the mobile payments for the various good and services provided. The term coined for these payments is M-Commerce. It is a Customer to Business(C2B) model where the consumer makes the use of smartphones for various online payments.
Preparing the road to successful E-Commerce Business
The road to be taken by the retailers for successful growth of the business from local customer interactions to an international level communication is E-commerce. The retailers will have to recognize the key functioning areas and identify the rapidly changing trends so that they can form their own business models for the successful growth of their business.
Innovation is the key towards successful Ecommerce. In order to stand out of the crowd and develop a premium Brand name, it is important for the retailers to understand the importance of overall quality of service provided and not just mere advertisement. In an era where a consumer expects an out of the box shopping experience it is the duty of the retailer to fulfill all these obligations and provide exclusive product sale and after sale service and in return earn a reasonable profit.