Ecommerce ecommerce company Alibaba operates in three of

Ecommerce is short for Electronic Commerce, which
refers to purchasing goods, or services via the Internet. Ecommerce operates in
four major markets: business-to-business, business to consumer, consumer to
consumer, and consumer to business. With the Internet available at our fingertips,
we have access to more stores than if we would if we just decided to go to our
local mall. With millions of users online it’s easy for anyone to open up a
shop and being selling to customers. According to the
United States Census Bureau, ecommerce market share of all retail sales as
doubled since 2008 (Retail Insight Center, n.d.). But with this growth comes it challenges and competitors. China has
completely taken over the ecommerce business because they are able to offer
cheap retail prices to consumers as well as wholesale prices to businesses.
With China offering the lowest prices to consumers, it’s hard for Western
companies to compete. (LUNDY, 2014).

 China’s largest ecommerce company
Alibaba operates in three of the major markets on different platforms:
Alibaba.com is a business-to-business platform; Taobao is a
consumer-to-consumer platform like eBay, and Tmall.com, which allows retailers
to reach consumers directly. With Alibaba it’s easy for businesses to buy
merchandise for very cheap since they are buyer directly from the supplier,
which cuts out the need for a middleman. They can get their goods shipped
directly to them in a matter of a few days. From a consumer aspect, they can
also purchase directly from the supplier, which would allow give them
competitive wholesale price instead of paying retail. For brick and mortar
businesses to be successful in this digital age of ecommerce, they are going to
have to be innovative in their online presence and need to focus on developing
a seamless multi-channel experience for their customers.

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Ecommerce has affected business-to-business transactions in a positive
way. One way is ecommerce helps by reducing the cost of matching buyers and
sellers, as it is less expensive to search for new products, compare prices,
and contact the supplier over the Internet. As a result, buyers will find
products and sellers they might not have been able to find before without the
use of the Internet. Another benefit of ecommerce for business-to-business
transactions is it helps in reducing errors, time and overhead cost in
processing supplier and consumer information. For consumers, ecommerce has
given them the ability to find and buy products that we would not have been
able to get locally. We can buy almost anything we want on the Internet at a
push of a button and we are also able to check product reviews and do research
before making a purchase. Although there are many advantages of shopping online
there are also drawbacks. Consumers must wait to days to weeks before getting
their product and the possibility of it being damaged on arrival is a
possibility and for businesses, they are not able to check the quality of the
product before making a purchase in bulk, although some suppliers will allow
you to purchase a sample piece to check the quality, you still must wait to
receive the item which will delay full shipment to the business. 

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