The history of eCommerce was started 1970, when electronic data interchange was implemented for the first time and the electronic transfer was introduced. The rapid growth of eCommerce all over the world was in almost all aspects of business, such as management, transaction processing, internet marketing and inventory management.
Ecommerce market research is closely connected with the study of Internet audience. According to US research, sale of goods is reasonable when the amount of users from the network is more than 12% of the population.
When you will read about the advantages of eCommerce for businesses and customers, you may feel that eCommerce is the Holy Grail of retail trade. This is not true. We will talk about them a little bit later.
Advantages of eCommerce
1. Overcoming of geographical limitations
If you have an offline store, you are limited in the geographical area that can be serviced. If you have a website - the whole world becomes your playground. In addition, the appearance of mobile commerce cancels any remaining limitations.
2. Gain of new customers via search
The second of lots of advantages or eCommece is the search traffic. The client accepts that while he is getting answers to the queries in a search engine, he can "land" on an unknown website. This is an additional source of traffic and also it can become a turning point for some eCommerce enterprises.
3. Reduction of expenses
One of the most valuable advantages of eCommerce is an oppotunity to reduce the cost of goods. Some of these reductions can be presented to customers as discounts sales.
Here are a few ways to reduce your expenses in eCommerce:
- Advertising and marketing. Organic search traffic, advertising, pay-per-click advertising, social networks and media are some of the advertising channels that will help get the cost-effectiveness.
- Staff. Automation of testing, billing, payments, inventory management, and other operational processes reduces the number of employees needed to run eCommerce.
- Real Estate. You do not need physical locations of office for eCommerce .
4. Find a product immediately
An eCommerce website provides customers with intuitive navigation and that can speed up the search of the goods. Some websites "remember" the behavior and preferences of customers, which make the search for the required goods for the next time much easier.
5. Exception of costs when moving to the store
Customers have to spend their time and money to get into traditional stores. Ecommerce allows them to visit the same store virtually, with a few clicks.
6. Product comparison
The next of advantages of eCommerce is that searching through the Internet can be really easy. There are also several online services that allow customers to view few online-stores and find the best prices.
7. Working with groups of buyers, coupons and discounts
There are physical equivalents of discounts, coupons and joint purchases in online store, but eCommerce makes their use much more comfortable. For example, if a customer has a time-limited discount coupon for a trip to Turkey in an offline store and for the toilet paper in the other, both at the same time, he can’t use them both. But the client can do it online in few clicks.
8. Providing more information
There are restrictions on the amount of information that can be located in offline store. Employees can’t provide all the customers with required information in time. Websites make an information easily available to customers.
Information that customer provide in online store in the registration form and cookies on the client’s computer open eCommerce business an access to all information about their customers and do the right customer segmentation. This can be used for targeting and advertising. For example, if you are looking for a specific product on Amazon.com, you will see ads of other similar products. In addition, Amazon.com can also inform you by e-mail about the appearance of related products.
Ecommerce websites are working all the time. Speaking of seller it increases the number of orders they receive. Speaking of customer store that you can access all the time ia very convenient.
11. Markets for niche products
It is pretty hard for buyers and sellers of niche products to find each other. All you need to do on the internet - this is only specify the query to search for the product in the search engines.
Disadvantages of eCommerce
Ecommerce is also characterized by some technological restrictions which are limited the number of people using this system. One of the significant disadvantages of eCommerce is that the Internet has not yet touched the lives of many people, either because of lack of knowledge or confidence. A huge number of people still do not use the Internet for any financial transactions.
Some people just refuse to believe the authenticity of a completely impersonal business operations, as in the case of eCommerce. Many people fear of the requirements of personal and private information they needed to leave in the registration form.
Another limitation of e-commerce is that it is not good for trading perishable goods, such as food.
Also if your online business is growing fast you spend lots of money to keep the website for online sales. It is often necessary to invest more money for performance, promotion, in training, optimizing logistics, etc.