Office 2004 Test Drive User
Table of Contents
Technology Makes the World Smaller
The international marketplace is changing very fast every day. E-commerce and E-Business is now one of the standard ways to do business. The Internet has opened up vast opportunities for business to tap into new markets all over the world. The use of the Internet removes all geographical constraints, permits the instant establishment of virtual branches throughout the world, and allows direct and immediate foreign market entry to the smallest of businesses to the biggest. As the economy is becoming more global in nature, companies are handling more business on an international level.
When comparing traditional business to e-business, one can see several differences between the two. The most obvious difference when buying standard goods such as a computer or Clothes is the store. When dealing with e-business there is no "real" store or merchandise to look at. It is all presented through the merchant's webpage, or by other electronic means. You will not be able to touch, or feel potential purchases. All you will have to go on is perhaps a picture and a brief description of the item on your computer screen. This is obviously a big change from traditional store where you can walk in physically touch what you plan to purchase.
There are several reasons why e-business is appealing to a lot of people. E-business is based on the internet. If you are using the internet, you are not bound by geography. You can access any site, anywhere in the world from the comfort of your own chair. Now the consumer has access to several things they didn't before. Same goes for any type of business on the Web. The consumer and different business now has variety. With the entire internet at your fingers, in a matter of minutes you can browse several stores in several parts of the world without even leaving the comfort of your own home. This allows you to compare prices and products off of different site. With e-business you are not restricted to the prices and products of your local stores. You can easily choose the best price or the best product. You have probably read all of the news stories about the shift to e-commerce and the hype that has developed around e-commerce companies. And you may have actually purchased something on the web, so you have direct personal experience with e-commerce. Still, you may feel like you don't understand e-commerce at all so lets start with the basics.
Before we get into a complete discussion of e-commerce, it is helpful to have a good mental image of plain old commerce first. If you understand commerce, then e-commerce is an easy extension.
Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines commerce as follows: com.merce n [MF, fr. L commercium, fr. com- + merc-, merx merchandise] (1537) 1: social intercourse: interchange of ideas, opinions, or sentiments 2: the exchange or buying and selling of commodities on a large scale involving transportation from place to place 3: sexual intercourse
So commerce is, quite simply, the exchange of goods and services, usually for money. You can see that at this high level, commerce is a fairly simple concept. Whether it is something as simple as a person making and selling hotdogs on a street corner or as complex as a Doctor performing heart surgery, all of commerce at its simplest level relies on buyers, sellers and producers. So electronic commerce is just exchange of money for goods and services via electronic means. In other words, electronic commerce is usually when you purchase something off of the Internet. It is often referred to as e-commerce, or e-business. The Internet has revolutionized the businesses of today. Instead of having physical stores, companies can sell their products right off of the Web. To understand it a bit, let's take a look at one...