Understanding E-commerce and Supply Chain

So when was the last time you stepped out to buy something from an offline store? It has probably been a while, right? With the advent of e-commerce it has become inevitable that you expect everything to be available online, ordered and delivered to you.

Let’s first define E-commerce

  • The conduct of selling, buying, logistics, or other organization-management issues on the WEB.


  • Technology mediated exchanges between parties (individuals and/or organizations) as well as the electronically based intra- or inter-organizational activities that facilitate such exchanges

Types of E-Commerce:

  • Business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce: customers deal directly with the organization, avoiding any intermediaries. Example: Amazon, Blibli
  • Business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce: participants are organizations. Example: Grainger, Alibaba
  • Consumer-to-consumer (C2C) e-commerce: participants are individuals, with one serving as the buyer and the other as the seller. Example: Olx

Multistage Model for E-commerce:

A multistage model for e-commerce includes

  1. Search and identification
  2. Selection and negotiation
  3. Purchasing
  4. Product or service delivery and
  5. After-sales service

The E-Commerce Supply Chain:

Supply chain management is a key value chain composed of:

  • Demand planning
  • Supply planning
  • Demand fulfillment

Global E-Commerce

Localization: Adapting an existing country centric web site to another language and culture

Steps involved in localization

  • Recognizing and conforming to the nuances, subtleties, and tastes of local cultures
  • Supporting basic trade laws such as those covering each country’s currency, payment preferences, taxes, and tariffs
  • Ensuring that technological capabilities match local connection speeds
  • Determine which global markets make the most sense for selling products or services online
  • Decide whether Web content should be generated or updated centrally or locally


  • Market segmentation: the identification of specific markets to target them with advertising messages
  • Technology-enabled relationship management: use of detailed information about a customer’s behavior, preferences, needs, and buying patterns to set prices, negotiate terms, promotions, add product features, and otherwise customize the entire relationship with that customer

E-commerce Advantages

  • Ability to reach new markets
  • Reduces costs (for some businesses)
  • Increased purchasing opportunities
  • More efficient (electronic payments, telecommuting, etc.)

E-commerce Disadvantages

  • Incompatibility for certain industries, e.g. heavy machinery
  • Limitations of the medium
  • Operational costs
  • Skills required
  • Cultural and legal issues


Online Book : Principles of Information System  A managerial Approach Seventh Edition And Google Images on “E-commerce growth in world”

By Avni Sharma
Engati – www.engati.com – A Coviam technologies platform
Coviam Technologies