Earlier than we get into a whole dialogue of e-commerce, it’s useful to have a superb psychological picture of plain previous commerce first. When you perceive commerce, then e-commerce is a straightforward extension.
Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary provides a number of definitions of commerce:
com.merce n [MF, fr. L commercium, fr. com- + merc-, merx merchandise] (1537)
1: social intercourse: interchange of concepts, opinions, or sentiments
2: the alternate or shopping for and promoting of commodities on a big scale involving transportation from place to put
3: sexual activity
We are typically within the second definition, however that third one is fascinating and surprising — perhaps that is what the entire hype is about?
So commerce is, fairly merely, the alternate of products and providers, normally for cash. We see commerce throughout us in in tens of millions of various kinds. Whenever you purchase one thing at a grocery retailer you might be taking part in commerce. In the identical method, should you cart half of your possessions onto your entrance garden for a yard sale, you might be taking part in commerce from a special angle. When you go to work every day for a corporation that produces a product, that’s one more hyperlink within the chain of commerce. When you consider commerce in these other ways, you instinctively acknowledge a number of totally different roles:
- Consumers – these are folks with cash who need to buy a superb or service.
- Sellers – these are the individuals who supply items and providers to consumers. Sellers are usually acknowledged in two totally different kinds: retailers who promote on to shoppers and wholesalers or distributors who promote to retailers and different companies.
- Producers – these are the individuals who create the services and products that sellers supply to consumers. A producer is at all times, by necessity, a vendor as nicely. The producer sells the merchandise produced to wholesalers, retailers or on to the buyer.
You possibly can see that at this excessive stage, commerce is a reasonably easy idea. Whether or not it’s one thing so simple as an individual making and promoting popcorn on a road nook or as complicated as a contractor delivering an area shuttle to NASA, all of commerce at its easiest stage depends on consumers, sellers and producers.