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Types of e-Commerce (EC)

What is e-commerce?

Electronic commerce, commonly known as e-commerce or eCommerce, or e-business consists of the buying and selling of products or services over electronic systems such as the Internet and other computer networks.    Modern electronic commerce typically uses the World Wide Web at least at some point in the transaction’s lifecycle, although it can encompass a wider range of technologies such as e-mail as well.

Types of e-commerce:

1.      B2B (Business-to-Business)

Companies doing business with each other such as manufacturers selling to distributors and wholesalers selling to retailers.  Pricing is based on quantity of order and is often negotiable.

Examples of B2B:

  • Alibaba (http://news.alibaba.com) based in Hangzhou, China which makes buyers and suppliers around the world to do business online
  • Euroffice (http://www.euroffice.co.uk) based in London, UK which is a supplier of stationery and office supplies online.
  • SpeedSend (http://www.speedsend.com) based in Cairo, Egypt which is a B2B procurement service for office & technology supplies

2.      B2C (Business-to-Consumer)

Businesses selling to the general public typically through catalogs utilizing shopping cart software.  They are companies offer their products or services for sale to consumers rather than to other businesses, as in B2B.    B2C often refers to the online selling of products, which is known as e-tailing.

Examples of B2C:

  • Amazon (http://www.amazon.com) the online bookseller based in Washington, USA.  It started as an online bookstore, but soon diversified, selling DVDs, CDs, computer software, electronics, apparel, furniture, food, and toys.
  • Souq (http://www.souq.com)  Member of Jabbar Internet Group.  It is an e-tailer working in UAE, Egypt, Jordan and KSA.  Souq.com describes itself as the channel where of buyers & sellers in the region meet on a daily basis to sell products over a trusted platform.
  • Bayt (http://www.bayt.com)  Bayt.com is an employment website or job search engine.   Based in Dubai, UAE
  • Otlob (http://www.otlob.com) and (http://www.otlobmall.com/) is an online food delivery services and online shopping mall.  Working in Egypt, KSA, UAE and Bahrian.

3.      C2B (Consumer-to-Business)

Business in the C2B business model represents any companies buying goods or services to individual through intermediaries.

For example, a consumer posts his project with a set budget online and within hours companies review the consumer’s requirements and bid on the project. The consumer reviews the bids and selects the company that will complete the project.   Or a company has a job to fill. The HR manager of the company signs up on the website and posts the job to his friends/relatives/employees. Everybody receiving the job offer can answer or forward it to their relatives. As soon as the job is filled, the reward is shared equally between each link of the referral chain. The referral hiring site takes care of every connection and receives a percentage of the reward.

Examples of C2B:

  • Google AdSense (https://www.google.com/adsense)  is a free, simple way for website publishers of all sizes to earn money by displaying targeted Google ads on their websites.
  • Elance (http://www.elance.com)  Online talent marketplace, helps companies hire and manage professionals online to get work done and grow their businesses.    Through it candidates start submitting proposals within hours, telling you what they can do and how much it will cost,  and companies compare profiles, experience, ratings, credentials and portfolios to select the best fit.
  • Linkedin (http://www.linkedin.com) which is a is a business-oriented social networking site allowin registered users to maintain a list of contact details of people they know.  They can pos their experience and area of work and then companies and recruiters can search for best fit for their needs.

4.      C2C (Consumer-to-Consumer)

Sites offering free classifieds, auctions, and forums where individuals can buy and sell with each other.

Examples of C2C:

  • eBay (http://www.ebay.com)  auction service where person-to-person transactions take place everyday.
  • e-Waseet (http://www.ewaseet.net) which is a free classified publication operates in 13 countries offering marketing services that provide advertising solutions for individuals and business organizations
  • Craigslist (http://www.craigslist.org) is a centralized network of online communities, featuring free online classified advertisements – with sections

5.      B2E (Business-to-Employee)

Allows companies to provide products and/or services to their employees. Typically, companies use B2E networks to automate employee-related corporate processes.  Usually uses a portal customized for organization employees.  Examples also include employee’s online insurance policy, online employee benefits recording, and other services ordering offered for employees within an organization.

Examples of B2E:

  • SpeedSend (http://www.speedsend.com) based in Cairo, Egypt which allows employees within an organization to order office supplies directly.
  • TRICARE Online (https://www.tricareonline.com) is a web portal for authorized TRICARE beneficiaries provides employees of organizations with health related content, on-line health plan maintenance, appointment scheduling capability as well as pharmacy refill capability.
  • Humana’s Emphesys product (http://www.humana.com),  allows employers using Humana plan to manage their health benefits, claims, etc.)

6.      G2B (Government-to-Business)

Is the online non-commercial interaction between local and central government and the commercial business sector, rather than private individuals where businesses can get information and advice on business and supporting indicators.

Examples of G2B

7.      Mobile Commerce (M-Commerce)

Is the ability to conduct commerce, using a mobile device e.g. a mobile phone (cell phone), a PDA, or a Smartphone involving the transactions to transfer of ownership or rights to use goods and services, which is initiated and/or completed by using mobile access to computer-mediated networks.

Examples of M-Commerce:

  • Nordstrom’s mobile site (http://m.nordstrom.com) is pure m-commerce site which the entire shopping experience of Nordstrom’s web site takes place on the mobile web.
  • Masabi (http://www.masabi.com) builds mobile ticketing software for everyday mobile phones. The company’s Ticket Machine in your Pocket application allows travelers to select, purchase and display train tickets on their mobile phone, all via a rich graphical interface.

8.      Collaborative Commerce (C-commerce)

Optimization of supply and distribution channels in order to capitalize upon the global economy and use new technology efficiently.  It enables trading partners to create, manage, and use data in a shared environment to design, build, and support products throughout their lifecycle, working separately to leverage their core competencies together in a value chain that forms a virtual enterprise

Examples of C-commerce:

  • Exostar (http://www.exostar.com) is an electronic marketplace formed by the aerospace industry to optimize the time it takes to move parts and products. Member companies, which include Raytheon, Lockheed Martin and Boeing, also generate improved customer satisfaction because they can use Exostar to trace product availability through the supply chain.

9.      Electronic Learning (e-learning)

It is essentially the computer and network enabled transfer of skills and knowledge. E-learning refers to using electronic applications and processes to learn. E-learning applications and processes include Web-based learning, computer-based learning, virtual classrooms and digital collaboration. Content is delivered via the Internet, intranet/extranet, audio or video tape, satellite TV, and CD-ROM. It can be self paced or instructor led and includes media in the form of text, image, animation, streaming video and audio.

Examples of e-learning:

  • Egypt e-Learning University (http://www.eelu.edu.eg) which is private non-profit University providing distance education through 24-hour online learning with a vision to be a leading university providing e-learning nationally, regionally, and internationally.
  • The National e-Learning Center (http://www.nelc.edu.eg)  supports the development of e-learning in Egypt.

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