E-Commerce is the selling goods and services through websites without having to establish any physical store. For shopping lovers, they call this virtual shopping. It can also be referred to as commercial transactions done between organizations or even individuals using digitally facilitated technology typically on the internet.

Features of eCommerce

It is ever-present
Nowadays, the market place is now unlimited and goes beyond traditional boundaries where for instance; shops are open from 8am – 5pm and thereafter, you cannot go shopping but have to wait until following day. Web technology is now accessible anywhere and available everywhere via mobile smart phones. Customer can now shop whenever they want to and this indicates that customer shopping is now enhanced for their convenience.

Global reach
This means technology is basically across national boundaries, it is within reach and this certainly reduces any market barriers that may have existed in the past.

Increases information density
Technology brings with it reduction costs of information and improved quality and also, information processing, storage and communication costs drop radically whilst accuracy and timing improves.

Features of a good website: for eCommerce purposes

A website is progressively charming the doorway to company’s products and services even if the company does not sell online.

A good website should have a well-organized collection of products and services. There should be a way of customers to access all products and compare without any difficulties, thus; it should be user friendly. The owner should be able to change merchandise information, enhance and eliminate merchandises on convenience and change prices without making inconsistences.

Moreover, a good website should have a convenient way for customers to select products implemented by the shopping cart or basket. Customers should have choices and be able to select or delete the products while browsing the web.

In addition to that, there should be convenient ways of payment and should have several options of payment for example; PayPal, Visa, MasterCard, etc.

Convenient order forms should be flexible enough for allowing specifying a different address for delivery, a gift message and should have as few required fields as possible and secure communication system to protect credit card information for customers to prevent unauthorized use of the card.

Major types of eCommerce

There is Business to consumer eCommerce [B2C] – this means your online business might seek to reach individual customers.
 There is Business to Business eCommerce [B2B] – this basically means businesses may focus on selling to other businesses, thus; the buyer and seller are both organizations dealing among themselves.
There is Consumer to Consumer eCommerce [C2C] – These may include online auctions whereby people meet virtually and sell do a business transaction with each other.
There is Consumer to Business eCommerce [C2B] – in this category, the consumer specifies the product requirement to the chosen business and in return, the business is expected to meet those requirements.

Limitations of eCommerce

Costly high-tech equipment – the finest and additional opportune technique of linking to the internet is through the fibre optic cable and these cables tend to be expensive to be laid down.
Complex software installations – there could be a requirement of installing certain software and application which could be tricky to operate.
Global inequalities – income which limits the penetration and accessibility of computers

Starting an online business, this requires:

  1. Identification the arising need
  2. Setting up of the website
  3. Identifying the market
  4. Determining how best to meet the market needs
  5. Getting to familiarize yourself with the market place
  6. Identify and know your competitors
  7. Define your target market

Promoting online business

In order to promote your online business and make the best of what ecommerce has to offer, you need to optimize content of the featured website [SEO] then advertise your website through banner adverts which run from corner to corner at the top of the website, the use of skyscrapers which run vertically down the side of the website, pay per click where a website owner only pays when someone clicks on the advertised link and the use of social media platforms.

Article has been written by the guys from Lilo. Lilo is a web-development agency in the heart of London, United Kingdom. With over 15 years of web development and e-marketing experience you know why Lilo is considered one the best Web design and development companies in the United Kingdom.