Information Technology has changed the way of doing business. It has changed the product development, marketing, selling process and communication channels that revolutionized e-commerce or online selling buying methods. E-commerce changed the selling /buying elements and bringing new methods of doing business and shopping experience.
So what are those changes that impact the small and big businesses and consumer worldwide? What are the advantages and disadvantages of e-commerce evolution? In this article, we will cover these all aspects of e-commerce and how e-commerce is impacting employment and economic development.
So let’s get started and learn in details, how e-commerce has changed the business:
1. Easy to Start:
The biggest change the way to start a business. anyone from anywhere can start their online store. They can sell traditional items, classical and handmade products globally. It’s opened the doors of opportunities for small villages people and now they can sell their product directly to the customer in good price.
It’s not that much technical to start an online store. Creating an eCommerce website is very easy, it can be started in 20000 to 50000. Just domain, eCommerce theme, content are enough to start.
there are the variety of eCommerce solutions for sellers such as they can start or build their own online store that is self-hosted and managed, they can sell on Amazon, they can use Shopify as service etc. If someone has basic knowledge of computer/internet they can start selling online.
You can sell almost everything online from clothes to furniture, from wood to plants, from flowers to office tools etc. You just have to add the photographs, prices, delivery options and it’s done.
It was not 20 years ago and now it’s gaining more popularity around the globe from last 10 years. And the reasons for popularity is that eCommerce business is easy to start. E-commerce bringing ease of doing business that was not possible without spending 100000 to 300000 upfront on stock and shop establishment.
2. E-commerce brings back the monopoly in the market:
E-Commerce business is easy to start but tough to survive. And to survive and grow the business, it’s required online business and digital marketing skills. It’s because of the following reasons:
1. there are big brands online selling almost anything they have the fastest product delivery options that is tough to do for a startup without a big amount of money.
2. Big brands are spending a large amount of money on digital advertising and digital marketing methods, tools, techniques.
3. big brands have hired digital marketing experts and they ranked on top 10 search results.
That’s why it’s tough for eCommerce website owners, small-scale eCommerce businesses to survive and grow the profits.
But they can break the monopoly by creating and following strategic methods such as:
1. They can focus on niche specific products such as only selling flowers, selling the only furniture.
2. They can use a content marketing strategy.
3. They can target specific locations for marketing and delivery in the start.
4. They can learn more about digital marketing and eCommerce through various educational channels on the internet. They can do digital marketing online courses, they can watch internet marketing and online selling methods on YouTube for free etc. And if they are not able in that, they can hire remote staff (freelancers) to operate, explore and grow the business.
5. They can use social media marketing and video marketing to show the business story in front of their targeted customers through social media advertising as well as content marketing.
There are various methods to break the monopoly, but we will talk about that in future posts.
But in conclusion, a monopoly by big brands on the online market is the biggest challenges for eCommerce. It means big brands are becoming rich and richer and small-scale commerce is just counting the coins. It means eCommerce bring the monopoly in the market due to that small offline sellers are getting fewer orders and the money is going in the pocket of big brands. And that’s why I think monopoly is the big change that eCommerce bringing into the offline and online market.
3. Personalized shopping experience:
Personalized experience means people are getting what they want. Personalized digital marketing such as targeted search advertising, location-based advertising, potential customer persona and remarketing etc. these digital marketing and selling methods are used by eCommerce companies. And in results, when people use/visit social media websites, apps, bogs they are getting the advertisement of the products they are looking.
In simple words, the internet knows what you want and what size/colour/ is best fit for you. It means e-commerce changed your friends, today you don’t need suggestion from friends for shopping. Today, internet and eCommerce is your new friends. It explains everything such as which laptop is best fit for programmers, which one perfume is best suited for housewives, best flowers for wedding receptions etc.
4. Product prices are low:
E-commerce changed the prices of products. E-commerce management and marketing of products are less costly than an offline store such as online store doesn’t need a helper, infrastructure, high rent, and accounts management most of the things cost less for eCommerce owners.
They only pay hosting and domain fees 5000 to 10000 once a year. Instead of an online store and offline store owners have to pay each month 10000 – 200000 rupees shop rent each month. It means offline store have to cover the cost, that’s why they set the prices that helped them to earn some profits.
That’s why eCommerce and online store owners can vary the prices and most of the time it is less than offline. And also they get more orders online due to the global reach of eCommerce and due to such reasons, they reduce the prices of products.
That’s why more and more people compare the prices of products offline and online, they compare more than 10 websites before buying. But in the end, they buy online it’s because they are getting the products at less price. It matters for most of the people.
5. People can buy on the go:
Due to the busyness and modernism people are doing shopping while they are traveling, while watching movies, attending friends marriage anniversary etc. and this is because of eCommerce. Shopping methods are changing. You can do the shopping from anywhere, anytime and any device. You don’t need to take a holiday from your office and job, you can buy it from anywhere. But it was not the case before eCommerce. But still, in many parts or few People do the shopping on Sunday or evening time or take holiday from the office to go shopping with family and friends. But it’s changing very quickly. And eCommerce is the reason behind this change.
6. Variety of product options:
It takes lots of time to find a variety of products offline. People visit 2-3 shops to find one product they like. It takes time and sometimes increases stress. Especially when you keep the small child on the waist in the crowded market. it’s tough to concentrate on the right product with kids or overcrowded market. That’s the solution to online shopping. You can visit 10 websites at your home to find the right variety.
Even many housewives spend 3-4 days to keep watching the latest collection and variety on the website.
There is more than 1 seller for a single product on the internet. Many have there owned manufacturing units and partnerships. They can bring more variety than offline sellers.
And in the results, customers are getting more variety of products to choose in the home. The change is that variety is in the hand of customers all the time. They can show and share it with husband at the same time no matter the husband is in the office or traveling.
7. Easy to pay for customers:
E-commerce changing the trading methods. And one change is the cashless transactions. Today banks introduced various versions of credit and debit cards for online shopping. Even many are partnered with eCommerce companies. Only to make the payment cashless, easy and increase the spending habits of customers to earn more or help to speed up the economic cash flow.
8. Easy to get paid for products:
Not only customers are doing the cashless transaction and buying products through debit cards. but seller and merchants are also getting paid online. Today, they don’t need to handle the cash, it’s coming directly into their bank account. No hassle for open money, no hassle to sell in lending. Cashless transaction and trading through e-commerce websites helping the government to grow and transparent the tax collection. Accounts management is easy and everything is transparent. It’s not that much properly utilized so far by the government but it’s bringing positive results in transparent trading.
9. Data-driven decision:
E-commerce increases the spending habits of customers and increasing expenses. eCommerce store owners are able to sell more, they are selling globally, targeting the behaviors of buyers, retargeting the customer on social media and through ads, collecting the data and utilizing to grow the sales conversion.
All is this happening because of the data-driven decisions in digital marketing and selling. E-commerce store or website can analyze the data, they can target and market specific product more aggressively, they can launch the product in the new market and it’s because they are tracking the source of customers, buying habits, interest, location etc. through tracking code on the eCommerce website.
And it’s not possible in offline shopping and selling. That’s why eCommerce has changed the ways to promote and sell products. And due to personalization and cross-selling, the customer is spending more money online than offline.
10. Automated the business:
E-commerce has changed business operations. In eCommerce business it is 24/7 online, means it is automatic and run by internet or automation tools. Product images is a physical identity, product description and titles communicate, social media websites market the products.
There are almost everything is available to automate eCommerce business. Marketing, delivery, inventory management, advertising can be automated. It means business automation is the change that bringing e-commerce in the market. Customers are buying while the owner is sleeping at home.
11. Easy to target customer:
Social Media Advertising, Cookies, keyword research tools, search engine marketing, display, and video ads offer the opportunity to target specific customers, locations. It means eCommerce bringing the change in which product is manufacturing and promoted based on the user interest. Marketing is based on the keywords and customers interests. And due to keywords, social media networking website, display advertisements and video ads and the availability of data help eCommerce websites/owners to target the customer’s interests. It’s increasing sales and reducing the cost of marketing.
12. Retaining customers:
E-Commerce help business to re-target or retain the customers. E-commerce websites / online store owners/ marketers can connect with customers on social media, emails, advertisements. They can update customers about the products on social media, they can chat in real time, they can send newsletter and they can educate customer through the blog and YouTube videos. The goal is to retain and find new customers.
13. Staff can work remotely:
Availability of highly Technically skilled people increasing the growth of e-commerce businesses. Every business and market needs expert sellers and marketers, manager and storekeeper. But not all are able to get and attract the right talent in the business. But to due to the availability of freelancer and marketplaces there are thousands of technical experts available on the internet.
So that anyone can hire to build an online store, manage the inventory, change the design of images, write content, provide customer support and many other things. and they can work remotely from their home.
They can be hired full time or as a contractor. There is no lack of skilled people online to run an eCommerce store.
E-commerce playing a big role in the growth of online workers. But also helping small and big online sellers to hire great talent that they need to grow their business.
In conclusion, e-commerce helps businesses to go global. Increasing digital employment and building new entrepreneurs due to ease of running or starting an online store. E-commerce speed up the economic cash flow of the country due to the involvement of the banking system in trading. E-commerce bringing new startups in the market and enhancing entrepreneurship capabilities in next-generation business leaders. That is helping in economic development and increasing demand for technical jobs and skills globally.
All of the above points explain that eCommerce has changed the ways, methods, systems, employment, shopping experience, trading, marketing in the business by using the Internet, social media, search engine, digital marketing, and data.
Vijay Kumar is Entrepreneur, IT Career/Leadership Skills Trainer and likes to help students, freelancers, and job seekers with his personal and professional experiences and ideas. The goal of writing is to help students to grow IT related Career and Leadership Skills.
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