E-commerce generally stands for electronic commerce and business transactions. What is electronic commerce? The answer to this question increasingly crystallized with the appearance of purchase offers and services on the Internet. Typical online goods offers can be found, for example, in online shops. Typical services on the Internet include texts from content providers.
The main differences between physical commerce and e-commerce
The business transaction, at a physical dealer in a physical trading company, usually still takes place hand in hand. In most cases, the customer chooses the goods on site at the dealer. Depending on the case, contracts are also concluded in writing and signed by hand. In many cases, the goods are paid for in cash .
The purchasing process, the transaction and the conclusion of a contract with a virtual dealer in a virtual online shop, however, is based entirely on the electronic level. The search for a suitable dealer begins on the Internet. If a suitable dealer has been found, the customer first registers using an electronic input mask. There, the customer must enter and save all data about his identity that is relevant to the business process. The view of the product range, the selection of the product, the information about the payment process and the payment process itself occur on the electronic level by means of remote data transmission. Further business transactions, such as information about the maturity of the picking and shipping process,
In the general terms and conditions of the dealer you can usually find out from which step of the purchase process a contract is concluded. This is often regulated by ticking the box. In other cases, an active button with the label "Confirm" or a comparable wording must be activated.
It is worth mentioning that, for example, a text purchased from a content provider on the Internet often does not leave the virtual world . If the buyer needs the text for a website, the goods never take a physical form. This also applies to online games, e-books and many other goods that are based on data.
The main advantages and disadvantages of e-commerce from the customer's perspective
E-commerce offers many advantages to potential customers . Two great advantages are saving time and money. The right dealer with the desired product can be found very quickly. Price comparisons are very extensive. The shopping processes are processed quickly. The customer does not have to leave the house, possibly saves fare, is independent of the weather and so on.
Pure convenience with many advantages clearly stand out here.
The main disadvantage is that direct physical dealer contact is lost. Customers who prefer the personal consultation will experience deficits on the Internet. Another disadvantage is that the goods are only viewed on pictures and can no longer be viewed as originals before purchase.
The main advantages and disadvantages of e-commerce from the retailer's perspective
The advantages are obvious. The dealer benefits from the fact that the customer is happy to use the convenience offered. The customer can quickly get an overview of the entire range of a dealer and make his selection quickly and easily. Almost all psychological marketing strategies, such as effective cross-selling(the offer of additional products or additional items that expand the actual core range) can also be used effectively by a retailer in an online shop. In addition, in the virtual world, there are extensive and very inexpensive advertising options on the Internet for retailers, some of which are regularly visited by tens of millions of potential customers. These include, for example, the start pages of the search engines and the social networks.
The main disadvantages for retailers who do not offer the best goods at the best prices are that a customer can look at the products of the market competitors much faster than in the physical world and compare them without much effort. Other psychological effects, such as an oversized shopping cart, sprinkling music in the corresponding sales zones and fragrance effects in the zones of the food departments, are eliminated.
The expansion of e-commerce to m-commerce
mcommerce stands for electronic commerce and business transactions with mobile devices. Internet-compatible cell phones, smartphones and a wide variety of tablet computers enable this mobile use in conjunction with electronic communication technologies such as mobile communications with many different networks, WiFi or Bluetooth. Thanks to the advanced satellite technology and the widespread use of radio towers, a very good connection has been made possible for the users. Product information can be called up and purchases made via the mobile devices. The huge advantage for the customer is that he can do both options anywhere and does not have to wait until he has access to a stationary PC.
Books, tickets, plane tickets, travel, online game add-ons, music purchases, event tickets, software, computer hardware, video films and DVDs, games and cameras are particularly popular with mCommerce. Studies have shown that the screen size of the end devices is very important for the frequency of certain product purchases. It emerged that larger screens led to more purchases overall. In addition to buying goods, social networks are also increasingly being visited on end devices. The general rule is that users want to get to their destination with just a few clicks (button functions).
The business benefits of certain mobile applications
Today there are various applications for mobile devices (abbreviated as app and apps). Appropriate mobile applications allow employees of a company to directly access data records released by the company. However, this applies not only to the retrieval of information, but also to its direct input. This means that an external employee can actively access the customer base, contacts, calendars, folders, mailboxes and much more via his mobile device and actively add, change and so on. This turns the mobile device with the corresponding application into a mobile office! This is an optimal solution in many practical cases, especially for field staff and freelancers who work externally with a company. This means enormous time savings for both sides. The external employees do not have to collect data separately, such as writing it down and then transferring it later, but they can feed it directly into the company's databases. The internalEmployees of the company can use and process this data promptly. For incoming orders, for example, this is very advantageous because the dispatch can be prepared quickly and the customers can also be satisfied more quickly.
The security concerns with mobile devices in connection with mCommerce
Fours, worms and Trojans are not just limited to the PC. Mobile devices are also susceptible to this. According to various surveys, the greatest danger comes from applications that are installed by the user on his mobile device. Such apps often hide hidden costs, which then lead to nasty surprises. But there are other dangerous aspects of mobile devices that have to be considered with regard to a purchase process. The payment systems via mobile devices are one of the main factors why many users are not yet making purchases related to mCommerce. With the relatively new mobile devices, many consumers do not yet know how to deal with passwords, PINs or automatic locks. Virus protection is also completely foreign to many when it comes to new end devices. This allows hackers to easily play again and again. At a completely different point in terms of security, the new end devices are usually very small and can be lost quickly. If such a loss results in the loss of private images and important data and the finder uses them for misuse, personal disaster can occur very quickly.
Additional hurdles for users of mobile devices to use mCommerce
The high costs of mobile surfing prevent many from shopping on the go. Many users generally complain that there are too few WiFi networks that are inexpensive or free of charge. Many also complain about the often inadequate transparency in the sales contracts of dealers and / or service providers. Another disruptive factor for users of e-commerce is the incomprehensible and visually deficient presentation of the websites by the providers. Further information will follow.
This distinguishes an optimal website for use in mCommerce
In general, the customer should not be confronted with any situation in which he does not get any further. Perplexity immediately triggers enormous customer dissatisfaction and leads to leaving the shop. Getting started with the actual product selection via the homepage must be very easy. Unambiguous menu items must explain the course of action automatically. If the page should or can be pushed up, down, left and / or right, this must be pointed out.
If images are displayed small, but can be zoomed larger, it must be pointed out that it is possible and how it is possible. Many users are not yet familiar with these functions on the new end devices. The eye also buys! The customer wants to see the goods that interest him and not many other goods next to them. A zoom function must therefore not be omitted.
A change from one menu item to another should be immediately recognizable in its functionality.
An important aspect is also the transportation of the goods to the shopping cart. It is often not clear how a product can be selected.
The payment system must be customer-friendly and secure. Many customers still want the good, tried and tested, especially with mCommercePayment by invoice. The reason for this is the many negative headlines in relation to insecure online banking via mobile devices.
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