E-Commerce is a concept that can be extended to any type of business or commercial transaction that involves the transfer of information via the Internet. E-commerce is currently one of the most important phenomena of the Internet on the rise, as it allows consumers to transact goods and services electronically without barriers of time or distance.
We believe that soon the boundaries between “conventional” and “electronic” commerce will tend to diminish. More and more companies are using e-commerce as a way of putting their products and services on the market.
E-commerce emerges as an additive to the conventional business model, helping to boost sales and reach a different audience. It is also considered a marketing tool in the dissemination of brands and associated products and services.
What types of e-commerce?
There are 3 types of e-commerce with different business goals. In which each one has to have an adequate strategy to achieve the goals set by the company.
- Business to Business (B2B): Corresponds to the marketing of products or services from a company to other companies. This type of e-commerce is carried out for wholesale sales. As a rule, it is common to be asked for credentials to access the product catalog.
- Business to Customer (B2C):It concerns the marketing of a company’s products or services to the final consumer. In fact, it is the type of e-commerce most similar to traditional commerce and is where retail sales are inserted.
- Business to Government (B2G):It is associated with the marketing of a company’s products or services to the Government. This type of E-Commerce has emerged recently and is experiencing strong growth. Since it is about the acquisition of goods or services by the State and the money used belongs to the citizens, the Government has to analyze the best option. In this way, companies that have websites intended for purchase by the government, have to comply with certain rules.
What are the advantages of E-Commerce for companies?
- Dynamic, versatile and personalized sales channel;
- Exploration of new business opportunities;
- Elimination of location and time barriers;
- Automation of the sales system;
- Ease of transmitting information about products and brands;
- Reduced operating cost;
- Ease of access to products.
Essential points to consider in an E-Commerce solution:
- Contact information must be present and in a conspicuous place;
- The information for each product must be clear and objective;
- Pop-ups, attempts to capture emails and other more aggressive marketing techniques should be avoided;
- The price information must include all fees and costs inherent to the purchase so as not to cause doubt to the consumer;
- In terms of payment and for security reasons for both parties, the use of credit cards should be avoided. Thus, the use of payment methods such as Paypal or similar becomes essential;
- The product catalog must be up to date;
- A stock management system must be implemented that allows an automatic update of the stocks available on the online sales platform.
E-Commerce should not be the only means of contacting customers. Other means must be used to publicize the products and services provided. You should see E-commerce as one more tool among many that strengthen the relationship with the customer.
E-Commerce in Portugal
In Portugal, the growth of E-Commerce is happening at a slower pace than in the rest of Europe. In contrast to the European Union, the number of online purchases in Portugal is only 44.8%, far below the average number in the European Union, which is 72%, according to data from the Associação da Economia Digital em Portugal (ACEP ).
In the year 2025 it is estimated that online purchases in Portugal will account for 8.9 million euros. In this way, it is important to prepare the way for this increase and we cannot forget that the creation of an E-Commerce platform facilitates the company’s presence in the international market.