E-commerce has translated the retail shopping experience into power shopping – quick, easy and fun. So, now users can save time and money by shopping online. But what propels e-commerce to be the way of the future?
With the increasing number of Internet users (there are over 2 billion Internet users in the world), it only makes sense that retailers venture online to improve their sales by engaging customers from across international borders. As the number of Internet users is growing so are the number of e-commerce websites and e-shopping merchandise.
Today, there are more than 10,000 e-commerce business websites around the world and in US alone B2B product sales totaled $142.5 billion in 2010. According to a research conducted by Forrester, the United States online retail industry will be worth $279 billion in 2015.
An insight into global e-commerce industry
E-commerce is growing rapidly around the globe. Merchants are now looking for big spenders and power shoppers across borders. Big shoppers place bigger orders and they shop frequently. Reports have shown that the country that produces the largest number of power shoppers is Canada which accounts for 36% of total worldwide consumers. While Europe accounts for 26%, Australia and New Zealand account for 19% of power shoppers. The Middle East accounts for 35%, which is a huge number even though it contributes only a small overall percentage of cross-border shoppers.
Launching e-commerce and the challenges
Amazon is one of the largest e-commerce websites that uses the Internet as the sole method for selling goods to its customers. Amazon’s business model is successful because there are no store fronts and the main distribution warehouse can be anywhere. By saving on the renting costs Amazon provides its customer with low price tags and has developed a strong customer reputation around the globe.
Today, running and maintaining a successful e-commerce website has become very tough. It needs an effective check out system and enhanced website usability. Selecting the right online marketing channels such as Facebook and Twitter, generating quality traffic and encouraging customer support are few of the specs which need to be taken into consideration.
E-commerce success stories
Electronic commerce has harnessed the power of the Internet to facilitate online businesses and many companies have moved their entire business online. Online businesses save a lot of time for both customers and themselves. There are no geographic constraints; an online business can be accessed by customers from around the world.
Indeed e-commerce has become the biggest sale channel for many businesses. At the top is e-commerce wunderkind eBay that has over 34.4 million visitors. Next in line is Amazon with 25.6 million visitors and Wal-Mart Stores that also tops the 2011 Fortune 500 businesses, making its name the biggest consumer business online. Wal-Mart is one of the key forces that boosted global outsourcing and now one of the top brands that makes high revenues through e-commerce.
Wal-Mart’s online experience is proof that success in the brick and mortar world is tied strongly with the success in e-commerce. Online commerce has truly become the heart and soul of business.