An e-business model is a technique that is used by a business firm to increase its profits through increased market share via the Internet. It simply entails conducting businesses, i.e, buying and selling goods through the Internet. Information technology has brought about globalization phenomenon where people are producing goods and selling them to the global market. This has helped businesses to grow rapidly as it has helped to address the problem of competition. Most companies are engaging in e-business to reach more people and to become more profitable (Lyytinen & Lyytinen 2002).
There are various e-business models that are used in online business. The first one is e-shops. This is a technique of e-commerce where consumers purchase goods and services directly from the seller through the internet without having to pass through the middlemen. The process of purchasing goods and services through bricks-and-mortar retailer is known as business-to consumer electronic shopping or simply the B2C. In this method, customers must have access to a computer with internet and must be able to use the recommended method of payment. This method is widely used in education systems especially higher education levels (Bagchi & Tulskie 2000).
The second e-business model is e-commerce. This term refers to the buying and selling of goods and services through electronic means. The means may either be internet or other electronic means. This term is broader as it encompasses the whole online business processes such as developing products, marketing distributing, delivery and sacrificing these products. There are many innovations that take place such interchange of data electronically, automated data collection systems and EFT (electronic funds transfer).e-commerce can be open to all partiers involved or it can be limited to only specific parties (Bagchi & Tulskie 2000).
The other model is the e-procurement. This is the sale of supplies, services and work to the government, businesses and consumers through the internet and other netwo9rking and information systems. Examples of such systems are enterprise resource planning, electronic data interchange. E-procurement can be in the form of business-to governments, business-to consumer or business-to-business. The model is done with the help of software that contains complex auctions and supply management features. The various types of e-procurement are e-tendering, e-informing, e-sourcing, e-reverse auctioning, e-marketsites, web-based ERP and e-MRO (Lyytinen & Lyytinen 2002).
The fourth e-business model is e-mall. This can be described as an electronic market. It is a web site that shows some displays of electronic catalogues from different suppliers. The websites owners charge a commission from the goods sold through this websites. The e-malls help the sellers to maintain their autonomy as individual suppliers and individual retailers. Components of e-malls that are tailored to buyers and sellers through this model are such as considerations and payment facilities, categorization, buyer traffic, legalities, redirection and site linking, advertising schemes and loyalty. E-malls employ a wide range of strategies in their implementation (Berzina & van2009).
Changes in the e-business models
The history of e-business can be traced back in 1970s where information was exchanged through electronic funds transfer and electronic data interchange. However, it remained in a state of stagnation until late 1990s where e-commerce started to emerge. This is when several businesses in the U.S and Western Europe began developed websites. In 2001, the use of internet completely unfolded after the collapse of the dot-com. In this year, business to B2B transactions hit $700 billion in terms of sales. This shows that developments had taken place and more people and businesses were willing to conduct their transactions online (Berzina & van 2009).
In 2001, iTunes was developed. This was a music device and enabled music to be sold online. This was quite a big improvement as far as e-commerce was concerned in music industry. It is believed that in 2006, more than $2 billion worth of music sales were sold online via mobile phones. This shows that by this time, the business-to-consumers module was perfect and changed internet into a cash cow for businesses. It is belie9vede that sales in the music market through internet accounts for over 10%. The other innovation that has really enhanced conducting business is the use of broadband. Broadband that penetrated into the market in 2001 reached 50% of internet users in 2004 and was expected to hit 90% in 2007. Through easy access to the internet, it is clear that online transactions would be higher (Berzina & van 2009).
Most organizations have automated their operations. A study that was conducted in 2006 showed that 9 out of 10 managers in the procurement section purchased goods online. This showed that e-procurement is in such an advanced level such that almost all organizations are using the internet to conduct business. Companies are using e-auctions to create awareness and monitor their auction progress. They have some access to their supplier relation management in which the have software; there is also an auction software and applications that are used for tracking inventory. The e-procurement has become an integral point of control while using multiple systems inside organizations (Shaw 2003).
E-shops have also developed substantially. Businesses and individuals shop online by locating the products and companies through websites and other online means. When a customer decides to purchase products online, he pays through channels required by the seller such as Pay pal, electronic transfers and others. Once payment has gone through, the buyer gains permission to access the nearest company store and goes to pick the product, there have been developed software that is used to locate the nearest company store. Alternatively, the company can use its distributors to drop the goods at the buyer’s premises (Shaw 2003).
EBay has helped many businesses to reach a wide range of people this has aided them to gain more market share as they not only increase their local market, but also they increase their market internationally. This has led to businesses realizing high growth that has consequently increased their profitability. It can be termed as a market itself. The company also has gained reputation due to its clean deals and also it has made billions through various charges that it levies business that conducts transactions through the company (Al-Qirim 2004).
Al-Qirim, N.A.Y 2004, “Electronic commerce in small to medium-sized enterprises: frameworks, issues and implications, Idea Group Inc, London.
Shaw, M 2003 E-business management: integration of Web technologies with business models, Kluwer Academic Publishers, Massachusetts
Berzina, I & van, P 2009, BommelBehind the Internet Business Models: An E-health Industry Case, Copenhagen Business School,Copenhagen
Lyytinen, S.T & Lyytinen, K 2002, Capturing the Dynamics of eBusiness Models: The eBusiness Analysis Framework and the Electronic Trading Infrastructure, Case Western Reserve University,Ohio
Bagchi, S & Tulskie, B 2000, e-business Models: Integrating Learning from Strategy
Development Experiences and Empirical Research, Watson Research Center, New York
E-marketing can be described as the application of marketing techniques, procedures and principles through electronic means especially the Internet. It is fundamentally the act of marketing a product through the Internet. It is cable of conducting both direct and indirect marketing and uses some technologies to link businesses and their customers. The objective of business to conduct on-line marketing is to create and develop its brand identity attract more customers in the business and most importantly retain the current customers. When this phenomenon is clearly implemented, its benefits can far much exceed those of traditional means. In modern times, businesses have to embrace Internet. This is because it makes the world a global market and a business can reach millions of customers through it (Warner 2010).
Web marketing is similar to e-marketing or on-line marketing. It is simply the act of marketing a business’ products and services through the Internet. It is actually synonymous to e-marketing. On the other hand, marketing on the web is whereby businesses advertise their products or services on a website article. An example of web market is like the one conducted by the eBay where customers can access products of a particular in a single point or through a company’s website. An example of marketing on the web is where an advert for example in the netMBA.com is placed at the side of the article or in between the article (Warner 2010).
Web traffic can be created my use of either online or off-line methods. Some of the offline methods are such as the use of press releases. A company can decide to write some press releases and post it to the local press or niche magazines. An advert can also be posted in the local newspaper about your business and the website given. Another method is through the use of business cards. Business cards have information of a person and his business. The websites found on business cards could result to the company’s website gaining high demand (Warner 2010).
There are several online methods of creating high traffic on websites. The first way is to send visitors who are ascribed to high value. These visitors would create some special attention to the crowd and more people would be able to access the website. The other way is to guarantee the results. If what is written or shown before a click is what comes out then the website is bound to have more customers. The other way is to guarantee a login for real time. This helps to monitor progress. A business owner should understand that the more the traffic there is in his web site, the more profitable is his business (Kirkland 2010).
This is a search engine that gives the best results. It is actually a computer program that is able to surf the worldwide web in an automated and methodical way and in an orderly manner. Search engines such as Google and yahoo use crawling to provide the most current information. Web crawlers are used to duplicate the pages visited at a particular time and create copies. The copy is later processed by a search engine that then indexes the pages that have been downloaded in order to provide fast searches. Crawlers are also used in maintenance of a website in such functions as HTML code validation. It could also be used to gather some types of web information such as Spam messages filtration (Kirkland 2010).
This is an application that allows people to share information, helps collaboration, and and allows interoperability on the web. Web 2.0 refers to changes that occur cumulatively in the ways the developers of software and users use the web. This application helps businesses to advertise on blogs and other sites. The application has helped people to interact and share information through social networking sites. Marketers in business have taken advantage of this phenomenon and are marketing their products through these social sites which is creating value to businesses by providing an easy means of advertising (Bradburne 2007).
Advantages disadvantages of social networking sites
social networking sites are cheap. The use of social networking sites is the most affordable channel of communication. Businesses and individuals. Businesses can get many customers by simply logging in to these sites and can be able to reach the target customers in just a click. They help businesses to boost their businesses in terms of advertisements and other promotional tools. It helps business people to know the likes and dislikes of their customers, thereby helping them to improve their products in accordance with the tastes and preferences of customers (Bradburne 2007).
The second advantage is that it builds credibility, businesses gains credibility by interacting with their customers both personally and professionally. Although it can be termed as so involving, the work has a pleasant pay off. If somebody gets a glimpse of the products in a networking sites, he will definitely purchase the product or the service and it really brings good returns as a result. Managers should place informed adverts on these sites and they should not be too aggressive to their customers. This makes them to succeed (Haegele 2001).
The other advantage is that people get to connect with their friends and they also get in touch with the friends of their friends and the chain goes on. If business people use this well, to market their products, they can really achieve success. The web could be so big and if the business people use that web well, they can really benefit and the site could turn into a cash cow for their business. In order to leverage this, there needs to be a well put strategies be cause if it is not well checked, it can lead into a disaster and loss of image (Kalb 2004).
Many people in social networking sites do not display their real information. This is due to risks that are associated with social networking sites. While businesses conduct research from the social networking sites, is could be difficult to quantify information from a particular group since the information displayed is not accurate. This makes these sites unreliable in some extremes of businesses because they can give misleading information (Haegele 2001).
There are chances of harassment and scams. People are subjected to such risks as identity theft, online scams and cyber-stalking. The business advert may be changed to mean different thing altogether and this could lead to a bad image of the businesses . Some people also do not visits the sites regularly as they term it as time wastage and therefore the message could fail to reach the targeted consumers (Kalb 2004).
Kalb, I.S 2004, E-Marketing: What Went Wrong and How to Do It Right, K & A Press, New York
Haegele, K 2001, E-Advertising and E-Marketing: Online Opportunities, The Rosen Publishing Group, Inc, New York
Bradburne, A 2007, Practical Rails Social Networking Sites, A Press, New York.
Kirkland, K 2010, The Writer’s Guide to Self-Marketing Using Social Networking Sites, Boson Books, Raleigh.
Warner, J 2010, Dreamweaver CS5 For Dummies, Wiley Publishing Inc, Indiana.