What Is Ecommerce?

Ecommerce is an online business model that enables you to buy and sell products and services through a digital platform, such as a website or content creation app. You can think of it as a digital version of your local grocery store, clothing boutique or bookstore. It encompasses more than just physical product sales, however, and can also include online banking, software services and remote service providers like lawn care apps or tutoring platforms. It’s a flexible term, and as such, you may see it used interchangeably with terms like ebusiness or mcommerce.

Whether you’re selling a simple T-shirt or creating an entire ecommerce ideas empire, you’ll want to understand how to manage your online sales in order to maximize profits and avoid headaches. Ecommerce can be complicated, but with the right tools and support from an experienced ecommerce partner, you can set yourself up for success.

The first ecommerce transaction took place in 1994, and since then, the industry has grown to be worth trillions of dollars. The first widely-used ecommerce platform was Amazon, and it helped popularize the concept of a digital marketplace where consumers can browse and purchase products and services from any device connected to the internet. Other popular ecommerce platforms include eBay, PayPal, and Shopify.

There are many benefits of ecommerce that make it an attractive option for businesses to expand their reach and increase profitability. It offers around-the-clock availability, an extensive selection of goods and services, global reach and a more efficient workflow.

It’s important to remember that the success of your ecommerce business relies on technology. If your website goes down due to a cyberattack or an outage at your web host, you won’t be able to complete transactions. Additionally, if you don’t have an ecommerce platform that allows you to collect data about your customers, you can’t target them with relevant marketing campaigns or send them personalized follow-up messages when they leave items in their cart.

When you create an ecommerce site, you can choose from hundreds of templates that make it easy to customize and build your brand with. Then you can add features like shipping integrations, shopping cart recovery, inventory management and more to help you run your ecommerce site smoothly and efficiently.

You can even integrate a mobile app into your ecommerce site to let users make purchases on the go. This feature, known as mcommerce, is a growing segment of the ecommerce market, and it can be particularly helpful for mobile-first brands.