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Advantages of e-commerce

The benefits of electronic commerce include:

Instant worldwide availability

The storefronts, catalogues, and marketplaces of e-commerce are always open and accessible to a global audience. E-Commerce creates an easier entry into new markets, especially geographically remote ones.
For instance, a Web site selling Persian rugs can be accessed by customers in the Middle East, North America, and anywhere else. There are new business opportunities as entrepreneurs design innovative ways to exploit the Internet for commerce.

E-Commerce advantages can be classified in three major categories:
  1. Advantages to Organizations
  2. Advantages to Consumers
  3. Advantages to Society

We will first look at advantages to organizations.

Advantages to Organizations

Using E-Commerce, an organization can expand their market to
  1. national and
  2. international markets
with minimum capital investment. An organization can easily locate more customers, suppliers and suitable business partners across the globe. Ecommerce gives a company the following beneftis:
  1. helps an organization to reduce the cost to create process, distribute, retrieve and manage the paper based information by digitizing the information.
  2. improves the brand image of the company.
  3. helps an organization to provide better customer services.
  4. helps to simplify the business processes and make them faster and efficient.
  5. reduces the amount of paper work.
  6. increases the productivity of the organization. It supports "pull" type supply management.

In pull type supply management, a business process starts when a request comes from a customer and it uses just-in-time manufacturing way.

Streamlined buyer-to-seller relationship

A streamlined buyer-to-seller relationship is created by simplifying communication and allowing direct interaction. E-Commerce strategies create the ability to streamline and automate purchasing: companies allow customers to generate and send purchase orders online, thereby minimizing the costs associated with handling sales orders.

Reduced paperwork, errors, time, and overhead costs

Conducting commerce over the Web results in reduced paperwork, allowing for a better focus on customer needs. Eliminating redundant data entry also reduces errors, time, and overhead costs in information processing. In addition, it takes less time to complete business transactions, specifically from delivery to payment.

Improved market and product analysis

The large base of Internet users can be surveyed for an analysis of the marketability of a new product or service idea. There is wider access to assistance and advice from experts and peers. Improved product analysis is available, because businesses can collect, collate, and make available their product information over the Internet.