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E-commerce: 6 of the Most Successful Internet Business Models

Jun 21, 2008
The business model is the key step before launching a commercial project. The business model is a study just before the business plan. The business plan outlines your project, describing its potential and the investment requirements while the business model itself defines a global strategy without going into further detail: what principle you can adopt to make money?

The world of the Internet is still recent, business models are still proving themselves. Here are nevertheless those who appear the most promising.

1 - Merchant

It is the easiest business plan to understand. It is actually an adaptation of the shop to the online world. You sell products or services through your site. The sales can be done with fixed prices or dynamic pricing, for example in the form of auctions. Different variations are: virtual merchant offering traditional products or specific, adaptation of an offer to buy online, opening an online store to complete a chain of stores (FNAC). Note: some manufacturers are put in line and make the sale in direct violation of their distribution network. It is a policy that has some obvious risks.

2 - Membership

You want to create a network of dealers to whom you entrust the task of promoting your products and your brand, in exchange for which you provide a commission. Any logistics, such as billing, collection or shipment, remains at your expense. The different variations that can be cited are: the exchange of visibility, payment to click. The biggest site built on this principle is Amazon.

3 - Billing to use

This model is based on the principle of accessibility to resources. The customer pays for every minute where he uses the service or for each document accessed.

4 - Advertising

The best know model and the first that comes to mind when we talk about profitability of a site. The basic idea is to generate as much traffic on a site in order to be able to sell advertising space. The site brings together traditional media such as radio and television. This model is very difficult to put in place, the major problem is to provide your visitors with free information and services, continually renewed, which are attracting more and more people. The increase in traffic involve an increase of technical resources and therefore a higher fee.

5 - Community

The site seeks to build a community of people sharing the same interests. The viability of the concept relies on the loyalty of the user rather than their number. The returns are done through the provision of community members. These contributions can take various forms: monetary or otherwise (provision of knowledge, equipment donations, exchange of knowledge).

6 - marketplace

The marketplace is the place to exchange with buyers and sellers. The purpose of the site is to connect the two groups according to their specific needs, remuneration being in the form of commission, fixed or variable. Some examples of possibilities: auctions (eBay), classified ads (the seller pays the publication), reverse auctions (the buyer makes an offer that the seller is free to refuse), Research Offers (a robot travels the internet looking for the best offer), virtual shopping mall (several shops are on the same site and each seller pays its "location" in exchange for services managed by the site.

If your business model is not on this list, think about it several times and check your idea with other people before you begin. Better to be safe than sorry!

To Your Success!
About the Author
Do you want to learn more about Internet Marketing? I have just completed my brand new guide to Search Engine Marketing Success: ''How To Consistently Drive Thousands Of Targeted Visitors Every Day With Search Engine Optimization''. Download it free here: Search Engine Optimization Success. Affordable Search Engine Optimization Services.com Serge Daudelin is a Search Engine Optimization specialist and consultant who has written over 300 articles in print and 5 published ebooks.
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