Since the rise of eCommerce in the early 1990s and early 2000s, it has undergone significant change and continues to change to this day. There seems to be no real separation between the online and offline models of selling as businesses now adopt a hybrid approach to marketing and selling their products and services.
In recent times, the eCommerce business in Africa has witnessed a tremendous shift with the most competitive markets across Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya, Morocco, and Egypt. Several factors contributing to this impressive growth include the broad expansion of smartphone and mobile devices (giving rise to mobile commerce), the emergence of various digital payments platforms, high internet penetration, and many others.
Given the wide range of eCommerce activities, I have created this definitive guide to help the reader under what eCommerce is about.
What is eCommerce?
Electronic Commerce i.e eCommerce is the buying and selling of goods and services using the internet. Ecommerce as a Digital Business Model addresses the need of business organizations, vendors, and customers to reduce Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) and improve the quality of goods and services while increasing the speed of delivery.
eCommerce vs eBusiness
Some people use the terms eCommerce and eBusiness interchangeably but both terms are not the same. eCommerce is the purchase of goods and services online which is a part of eBusiness; which is an encompassing term referring to the entire process of running a business online.
Types of eCommerce Business Model
Below I will list and explain seven eCommerce business models that may inspire you:
1. Business-to-Business (B2B)
A brand following the B2B model sells its products or service to other businesses. For example, a digital agency selling marketing services to other companies rather than individuals, a wholesaler selling to a retailer.
2. Business-to-Consumer (B2C)
This is a direct opposite to the B2B model; a website following this model sells its products directly to consumers. The customers can directly purchase from the company website or mobile applications and receive the products directly.
3. Consumer-to-Consumer (C2C)
This model run much like a peer-to-peer or marketplace model, in which an individual can sell directly to another individual using an online platform. Most classified listings like Jiji, Craiglist e.t.c. follows this eCommerce business model.
4. Consumer-to-Business (C2B)
This is a business model where an individual provides products or services to a company or business entity; it is the reverse of the Business to Consumer model. For example, a freelancer can provide service to a company; a contractor can also do the same. A tech blogger who displays a company’s service ads to their audience in exchange for a cut of the ad revenue.
5. Business – to – Government (B2G)
In the Business-to-Government (B2G) business model, a business sells products, services, or information to the governments or government agencies. B2G provides a way for businesses to bid on government projects or products that government might purchase or need for their organizations.
6. Government-to-Business (G2B)
The government to Business (G2B) eCommerce model works in a way that the government offers digital services to businesses or companies. A good example of this is the Cooperate Affair Commission offering business name registration services to entrepreneurs.
7. Government – to – Citizen (G2C)
The government to Citizen (G2C) business model also called e-Government offers services to citizens and businesses in general anytime and anywhere. Such government platform provides services like registration for birth, marriage, or death certificates. The main objective of the G2C model is to reduce the average time for fulfilling citizens’ requests for various governmental services.
In a Nutshell
Selling online goes beyond using your mobile phone or social media handle to sell, though that works very fine too. Prospective Customers want more in other to make buying decisions and this requires that a business build a credible platform for customers to transact business with them. This may require the implementation of mobile applications, an online shopping cart system with payment integration, and shipping integration.
Nebitex Digital Consultancy can make your eCommerce presence a credible one. Get in touch with us today so we can guide and support your eCommerce business idea. You can check out our eCommerce Development page for more information.
Emmanuel Okaiwele is a Freelance Web Developer with Experience in Front End and Back Website Development, Linux Servers Administration, and Digital Strategy.