Under electronic commerce (E-commerce), or “e-commerce” or “e-commerce”, all forms of trade on the Internet together, though mobile via smartphone or directly via PC and laptop.
We’ll take a closer look at what you have to pay attention to when setting up your e-commerce business, what opportunities and risks online trading brings with it, and how you can use people’s buying behavior via your online shop for yourself and your marketing.
Definition: what is e-commerce?
According to growtheology, online trading can be broken down into the areas of business to business, or B2B for short, and business to consumer, or B2C for short , and it includes all trading activities that take place on the Internet. The term is therefore quite broad, which is no wonder, because after all, e-commerce is not only long-established, but also continues to rapidly advance.
What is an online retailer?
You are referred to as an online retailer if you operate an online shop or a platform on the Internet through which you make your services or goods available for ordering. In parlance, the online retailer is often referred to as an internet retailer. But there is also the retailer who operates both a stationary store and an online shop at the same time.
The merchant of e-commerce
E-commerce clerk is still a relatively new apprenticeship. It has only been possible to train in it since August 2018. After a short time it became clear that the training is very well received and that it is in great demand. There are no specific requirements regarding school-leaving qualifications for admission to training as a businessman / woman. Only good grades in mathematics, German and economics are expected. In addition, a good command of English and analytical thinking skills are an advantage. The dual training lasts 3 years.
E-commerce and e-business
The term e-business is very often used as a synonym for e-commerce. But there is a clear difference between the two terms. As e-business you call the initiation, the agreement and the development of processes that are considered to add value and help are handled by information technologies.
In contrast to this, in the area of e-commerce you concentrate on electronically running transaction processes. These processes are known as online trading. E-commerce is therefore only part of e-business.
Advantages and disadvantages of e-commerce
The digital change is affecting more and more industries that cannot avoid offering their own products and services in online retail as well.
Advantages of e-commerce
The advantages from the customer’s point of view are obvious. The online shops are available around the clock, prices can be compared transparently and in real time, shipping is usually free of charge and often only lasts for a short time. Usually only one to three days pass from the order to the receipt of the goods. If a product does not exist in this country, it is simply ordered internationally. Thanks to online payment methods and shops with Europe-wide or worldwide shipping, none of this is a problem at all.
From a business perspective , all those points that were named as advantages for consumers are not necessarily also advantageous, but they at least offer opportunities. Price transparency can be problematic for some companies, but ideal for others. The decisive factor here is your own positioning: do I want to be the cheapest provider, or can I perhaps score with a special service and thus achieve a higher market price?
Disadvantages of e-commerce
Where there is light, there is also shadow and so there are also disadvantages in the area of online trading . From the company’s point of view, the biggest shortcoming is the return rate, i.e. the number of products that are returned. The high postage costs can quickly drive down the margins on orders. If necessary, goods must be thoroughly cleaned and logistical challenges are omnipresent. From the consumer’s point of view, on the other hand, there are hardly any disadvantages, at most individual unreliable shop operators who can cost time and nerves and the fact that the shops in the city in which one lives are becoming fewer and fewer.
E-commerce vs. stationary trade
Online retail, i.e. e-commerce, has the advantage over stationary retail that you can save both personnel costs and retail space. But the customer also benefits from e-commerce compared to stationary retail. He does not have to pay attention to fixed shop opening hours and can order whatever he wants at any time and from any place.
As in brick-and-mortar retail, there are just as significant differences online, which depend on whether the products and services offered are aimed at private individuals or companies.
Shops often become real online worlds of experience for private individuals. The shop area is expanded with videos and blog articles in order to create a certain attitude towards life.
In the B2B area, however, the focus is on optimizing the purchasing processes of other companies. Simple platforms on which it is possible to order the required products efficiently enable other companies to operate in a resource-saving manner. Depending on the industry, the requirements and requirements are again specifically different.
The business models in the B2B area are diverse. In addition to creating a central, as comprehensive as possible order platform for other companies, flexible solutions are also a viable option. For example, when you think of software companies that simply offer other companies licenses per employee or offer monthly flat rates. But if you don’t offer your services online yet, how do you design the perfect online shop? We’ll take a closer look at this point next.