E-business (electronic business) is using technology to improve your business processes. This includes managing internal processes such as human resources, financial and administration systems, as well as external processes such as sales and marketing, supply of goods and services, and customer relationships. The way in which you manage your business relationships has not changed, but the way they are referred to when using e-business tools has. They are becoming more often known as: * Business to business (B2B)
* Business to consumer (B2C) (also known as ecommerce)
* Government to consumer (G2C)
* Government to business (G2B).
Activities using e-business tools include:
* Trading of goods or services online, such as e-procurement, primarily through websites * Electronic retailing (e-tailing)
* Use of the Internet, intranets or extranets to conduct research and manage business activities * Website marketing
* Online communications, such as email
* Online training for staff (e-learning).
E-business tools include:
* Mobile phones
* Personal digital assistants (PDAs)
* Electronic data interchange
* File transfer
* Video conferencing, Internet, intranets and extranets.
The Differentiation of E-commerce and E-business
Although the terms e-commerce and e-business are often used interchangeably, there are differences. E-commerce is the buying and selling of goods and services on the Internet or other computer network. Any brick and mortar store can become an e-commerce business by adding a virtual storefront with an online catalog. In most cases, e-business refers exclusively to Internet businesses, but it may also refer to any business that uses Internet technology to improve productivity and profitability.
Business transactions that involve the exchange of money are covered by the term e-commerce. E-business includes all aspects of running a business that sells goods and services, including marketing, earning and retaining customers, procurement, developing business partners and customer education. In order to be successful, e-commerce and e-businesses must have quality storefronts that are simple to navigate and peruse, with accurate and thorough catalog information. E-business became an extension of e-commerce to encompass all aspects of businesses that function online. E-business involves e-commerce, but e-commerce does not cover all aspects of e-business.
E-commerce, in its initial form of commercial transactions, came about in the late 1970s. At this point, businesses began to send commercial documentation electronically to other businesses. The general public was introduced to the Internet in 1994, but it took an additional four years to create the security protocols necessary for a ready Internet connection. By 2000, businesses in America and Western Europe were presenting their goods and services online. This is when e-commerce became online buying and selling, and e-business was born. Amazon and eBay were two of the first e-businesses to allow electronic transactions.
Advantages to Vendors
E-businesses have distinct advantages over brick and mortar stores. First, they can be found with search engines without the use of pricey advertising campaigns. Beyond this, e-business allows vendors to track purchases and preferences of customers, leading to marketing catered to each individual. Advantages for e-commerce, which also extend to e-business, are great monetary savings (because of fewer employees and low overhead) and the ability to reach consumers across the globe.
Advantages to Consumers
Consumers can access e-commerce and e-businesses at any time of the day or night, from their workplace or in their pajamas. Consumers can search through countless products and services using online databases. Prices are quickly compared online to find the business that offers the best products at the best prices....