E-commerce, also known as electronic commerce, refers to the buying and selling of goods and services, or the transmitting of funds or data, over an electronic network, primarily the internet. Electronic commerce draws on such technologies as electronic funds transfer, supply chain management, Internet marketing, online transaction processing, Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), inventory management systems, and automated data collection systems. In the emerging global economy, e-commerce and e-business have increasingly become a necessary component of a business strategy and a strong catalyst for economic development.
Business-to-Consumer (B2C), also called B-to-C, refers to the transaction of goods and services that take place directly between a business and a consumer, who is the end-users of its products or services. This type of ecommerce is among the most popular and widely known sales models. B2C traditionally referred to mall shopping, eating out at restaurants, pay-per-view movies, and infomercials. However, the rise of the internet created a whole new B2C business channel in the form of e-commerce or selling goods and services over the internet. Amazon is an example of B2C e-commerce.
Business-to-business (B2B), also called B-to-B, is a form of transaction between businesses, such as one involving a manufacturer and wholesaler, or a wholesaler and a retailer. Simply put, it refers to business transactions between two companies. These transactions commonly happen in the supply chain, where one company will purchase raw materials from another to be used in the manufacturing process.
Customer-to-customer (C2C), also called C2C, is a form of business model whereby customers can trade with each other, typically in an online environment. C2C transactions actually represent a form of bartering. It represents a market environment where one customer purchases goods from another customer using a third-party business or platform to facilitate the transaction. Two implementations of C2C markets are auctions and classified advertisements. eBay and Etsy are examples of C2C companies.
M-commerce, also called Mobile Commerce refers to the buying and selling of goods and services, paying bills, mobile ticketing and doing transactions through wireless handheld devices such as smartphones and tablets. Many choose to think of mobile commerce as “a retail outlet in your customer’s pocket.” M-commerce can be used by businesses to improve their customer base and increase their revenue. Some types of m commerce include online shopping, mobile banking, mobile app payments through PayPal and Google Pay, and booking tickets online.
F-commerce, also called Facebook Commerce, refers to the selling of goods and services on Facebook. It has become a major online trading vehicle. Facebook being a popular social media site provides a captive audience to transact business. Many small businesses rely more on their social media presence than they do on traditional websites. This is one of the newest forms of e-commerce, that has become popular with young entrepreneurs which makes shopping on Facebook pages convenient for the young generation.