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Aug 18, 2008
A frequently used but just as frequently misunderstood term, ecommerce is the abbreviated term for Electronic Commerce - the transaction or exchange of goods or services through a digital network.

Billions upon billions of dollars have been generated through ecommerce in the past decade. While the revenue generated is impressive for a relatively novel phenomenon, even more impressive is the manner in which ecommerce has transformed the national landscape of business; both from the viewpoint of the business owner and the consumer.

Ecommerce, as is demonstrated by quarterly figures released through The United States Census Bureau, Department of Commerce, has become an important, powerful, and significant part of our corporate lives. These staggering statistics indicate the powerful role ecommerce plays in our changing economy.

Issued for public consumption in November 2007, the Q3 2007 ecommerce report showed sales rates of 34.7 billion dollars. Do these figures indicate people are buying more, or conversely buying less through traditional means? A study done by the USC Annenberg Center for the Digital Future suggests people now spend fewer of their dollars in brick and mortar establishments than at any point before in corporate history.

In fact, reports indicate that people spend 65 percent less in traditional stores since the ecommerce boom commenced. While shopping habits have not changed completely, the gap is shrinking at a swift pace. The future of retail business will depend a great deal on the traditional retail front partnering with online ventures. As the saying goes, if you can't beat them, join them.

For you, the ever-important consumer, this information may be more relevant and important than you think. Ecommerce is growing at a rate of 25 percent per year. Growth in any area of business generates greater choice and availability of both goods and services.

Essentially, this level of growth incites some healthy competition among the businesses involved, thus keeping prices low. It permits merchants to offer a broader range of transaction options and incentives. Most importantly, it allows the consumer more freedom on how to spend his/her hard-earned funds.

In the past, a consumer could find reading material at a local book dealer. Most booksellers were very willing to special order a book that was not available on store shelves. Through ecommerce, the consumer can order a book from any location in the world and have it delivered to his/her doorstep within days. The entire practice of ecommerce has served to indulge our yen for instant gratification and, in the process, made our lives easier.

Who would have thought in a matter of minutes one could pay his/her mortgage, download a CD, book a vacation, order groceries for home delivery and purchase a gift all with only a few clicks of the mouse?

Beyond aiding the consumer, ecommerce has changed the face of business full circle. Millions of entrepreneurs are using this process to make their concepts and wares available to the world, and for relatively small start-up fees.

New industries have been born from this trend, some out of necessity and some from sheer genius. The Aberdeen Research Group predicts that the technology of BI (Business Intelligence) will be one of the most sought-after technological solutions for 2008. BI technology, in essence, gives the retailer real time information that allows a swift response to consumer demand on the Internet to create customer retention and loyalty.

Without ecommerce specialty, niche industries never would have existed. The domino effect filters down to the manufacturers, sales people and marketers.

No longer a novelty, ecommerce is here to stay. The natural progression of this new corporate art form has been exciting to watch and participate in. To us it may spell convenience; in the eyes of the world, the possibilities are endless.
About the Author
Garey Simmons writes about SEO Services from experience using SEO Services from his Search Engine Optimization Specialist. Much of his online success can be credited to using the SEO Services of http://SEOCoach.Net
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