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What is Electronic Business?

Jim B.
Jim B.

Electronic business refers to the buying and selling of goods and services performed electronically over the Internet. The process can include businesses selling to each other, businesses selling to consumers, or even consumers selling to other consumers. Most commonly, websites are set up by businesses advertising their products and services and allowing consumers to make purchase right over the Internet. Technological advances on the Internet have allowed electronic business, also known as e-business, to reach such a high level that very few companies can compete without some sort of attempt to conduct e-business themselves.

The growth of the Internet has occurred at such a rapid pace that it now affects just about every aspect of modern life. It makes sense then that the way people do business has been forever altered by the Internet and its many applications. Except perhaps at a local level, it is unlikely for a modern business to be successful by ignoring the worldwide web. As that is the case, most companies now devote a great deal of their focus to conducting electronic business.

Highly advanced devices like cell phones provide many possibilities for business applications.
Highly advanced devices like cell phones provide many possibilities for business applications.

For consumers, electronic business has been a very valuable advance because it allows them a great deal of convenience. Simply by having a computer with an Internet connection, an individual can conceivably do most of the major tasks associated with daily life, like paying bills or buying necessary items or transferring money, with just a few clicks on the computer mouse. Improved measures afforded by technological advances allow ordinary people to do these things with a much greater sense of security than in the past.

Modern businesses often devote much of their marketing efforts to their websites and other online applications because practically every step of a business transaction can be done online. Whether making a sale to a consumer or providing a service online to another business, the payment can be received and the delivery of the product can be made without any physical meeting of the parties involved. Electronic business may lack in the trust gained from human interaction, but the convenience of the process is undeniable.

Consumers can also conduct electronic business among themselves via auction and classified websites, as one consumer offers up a product and another connects to make the purchase. E-business has also branched out beyond computers, and highly advanced devices like cell phones provide limitless possibilities for business applications. Such technology allows businesses to reach consumers wherever they are at any time, a benefit that is invaluable in the competitive business world.

Discussion Comments


@pastanaga - It's the auction sites that have really changed my life, and not just because I buy from them. I sell my art on there too.

I've actually managed to build up a small following, something I don't think I could have ever achieved in real life, because I don't think I could ever have scraped together enough pieces to hold an art show at a proper gallery.

One day I might be able to make a living wholly as an artist and that is a gift.

Plus it has led me to find several friends I might not otherwise have met. Electronic commerce can sometimes be even friendlier than real world commerce, just because people feel more comfortable talking in email.

That's my experience anyway. I'm sure other people have had different experiences.


@pastanaga - The problem with that is that local stores tend to miss out when you bypass them to get your glasses, or whatever, through an online store.

I'm not saying you shouldn't do it, especially if you can't afford them any other way. But, I try to buy locally as much as possible, even when I'm buying through an electronic business.

Local stores will often mention quite plainly on their websites where they are located, and how they source their ingredients or products. Often they'll even have a blog as part of their digital marketing so you can follow them and see what's going on.

The money goes into the community, which can only be a good thing. Plus the delivery fees are often cheaper.


I can't believe how much electronic business has really changed the world. At least, it's changed the way I do things quite a bit.

In particular there are things I'm able to buy which I just wouldn't be able to afford if they weren't sold through online stores. The thing that jumps immediately to mind is contact lenses and glasses.

If you buy them in a traditional retail business they can be as much as ten times as expensive as through an online store.

Sure, you have to go and get your eyes tested first, but at least I don't have to spend hundreds of dollars on what is basically a fancy piece of plastic that I accidentally sit on several times a month.

I really hope we never have to go back to what I consider to be the "bad old days" before the internet became a thing we all take for granted.

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    • Highly advanced devices like cell phones provide many possibilities for business applications.
      By: Darren Baker
      Highly advanced devices like cell phones provide many possibilities for business applications.