Today, the internet has revolutionized the world of business. With each passing day, more and more businesses are getting online. Now you do not have to walk or drive all the way to market just to buy a small item. All you have to do is place an online order and your purchased product will reach your doorstep in no time. However, in the midst of all these online modes of business, a lot of people are confused about what’s the difference between e-commerce & e-business?
In this article, we are going to explain all the differences between e-commerce and e-business along with the advantages and disadvantages of both. So let’s take a deeper dive into the article because there’s a lot to learn for you.
Table of Contents
What is E-Business?
E-business means conducting any type of business electronically through the internet, intranet, extranet, and web. E-business is a superset and multiple subsets fall under it and e-commerce is one of them. E-business not only includes buying and selling products over the internet but also different business processes like supply chain management, order processing, customer-client relationships, etc. In simple words, E-business is a wider category that includes business and business processes, from initial planning to implementation.
Types of E-Business
Generally, there are two types of E-business and they are given below:
1- Pure Play E-Business
Pure-play e-businesses have an online or electronic existence only. It means that these businesses have no existence on the ground and they’re present on the web only. For example, the websites you use to book hotels & trips, etc. So the types of e-businesses that have no physical existence are known as pure play.
2- Click & Brick E-Business
The types of e-businesses that have both, online and physical existence are known as click and brick e-business. Click means their online existence and brick means their physical existence. For example, there would be certain stores around you that are not only present on the ground but they also exist online. Amazon is one of the most famous click-and-brick e-business. Amazon offers thousands of products online as well as on their physical stores all across the world.
Advantages of E-Business
E-business has a lot of advantages and we have listed them all below:
1- No Restriction of Location & Time
E-business eliminates all the restrictions of place and time. You can access customers from all over the world at any time. On the other hand, the physical businesses are locked in a dimension of limited area and time. E-businesses can be run nonstop for 24 hours from any corner of the world and you can sell your products all across the world as well.
2- E-Business is More Economical
For physical businesses, you have to pay plenty of bills such as rent, electricity bills, water bills, salaries of the staff, and other maintenance expenses. There are no such expenses in e-business because everything is online. Moreover, e-business is also more smooth and convenient than physical businesses because all the transactions and communications are done online and digitally within seconds.
3- More Accessible for Customers
E-business is more accessible for customers. Your customers can access you anytime from any corner of the world. Whether they want to purchase something, need some quick information, or just want to contact you, all they’ve to do is drop you an email or an online message and their job will be done in no time.
4- Your Business Stays Relevant
E-businesses will never be irrelevant because they are based on the internet and the internet is the future. The trend of the internet will keep going on increasing with each passing. Therefore, there’s no need to worry that your business might go irrelevant because it’s never going to happen.
5- There’s a lot of room for improvement
There are a lot of online tools through which you can keep improving your e-business every day and take it to new heights of success and achievements. For example, you can track your customers, sales, and other data with the help of Google analytics. It will help you plan better and grow your business accordingly. Such facilities are rare in physical businesses.
Disadvantages of E-business
With all those advantages, there are also some disadvantages and limitations of e-business that we have explained below:
1- There’s no personal touch
One of the limitations of e-business is that there is a lack of personal touch. You cannot personally meet most of your customers because they are spread all over the world and all the communication is done through the internet. So you might miss the elements of credibility and confidence in e-business.
2– Delivery Takes Time
In physical businesses, you can drive to the store, pick up the product and get it home in no time. However, in e-business, the delivery takes time. However, this issue will be soon resolved as now a lot of e-businesses such as Amazon are offering real quick delivery within just 24 hours at some places.
3- Risk of Scams
E-businesses are vulnerable to online scammers and hackers because everything is being processed online. However, no one will be able to scam you if you’re smart enough and know how to deal with such jerks and protect yourself.
What is Ecommerce?
Ecommerce is a subset of e-business and it refers to the selling and buying of products and services over the internet. While e-business is a wide category that covers everything related to business, e-commerce is only limited to selling, purchasing goods, and making commercial transactions.
Types of Ecommerce
There are 4 types of e-commerce:
1- B2C ( Business to Consumer )
In this type, a business sells services or goods to the consumer. (Buying a pair of shoes from an online retailer)
2- B2B ( Business to Business )
In this type, a business sells services and goods to other businesses. (Business selling software to another business)
3- C2C ( Consumer to Consumer )
In this type, a consumer sells goods and services to another consumer. (Selling used items to other people on eBay)
4- C2B ( Consumer to Business )
In this type, a consumer sells their goods and services to a business. (Celebrity advertising a brand in exchange for money)
Advantages of E-Commerce
Following are some advantages of e-commerce:
1- It is Cost-Effective
The major perk of e-commerce is that it is economical and cost-effective. In physical business, you have to pay thousands of dollars to find a nice spot for your store and then keep paying a big amount of money for bills and other maintenance charges. On the other hand, e-commerce requires a minimum investment only.
2- Worldwide Access
In physical stores, you can sell your product to the people of your area only. However, with e-commerce, you can sell your products to people all across the world. You will get customers from every corner of the world and hence get big revenue.
3- Ease of Adding New Products
In e-commerce, if you are getting steady sales, you can easily add a new product to your inventory to further boost your sales and generate more revenue. All you’ve to do is to find a supplier and list the item on your website. However, in the case of physical stores, it is harder to add a new product as you will have to get more space and hire more employees for that.
Disadvantages of Ecommerce
Following are the disadvantages of e-commerce:
1- Delivery Takes Time
The major drawback of e-commerce is that the entire process from order processing and packaging to shipping takes some time. Due to which the customer might be impatient.
2- More Competition
Due to the ease of doing business, there’s a lot of competition in the e-commerce market. Especially the most popular niches are well contested because they generate more revenue, so everyone eyes for them.
3- No Physical Interaction
The majority of the customers and clients cannot physically interact with each other as everything is based on the internet.
What is the difference between Ecommerce & E-business?
Ecommerce is just about selling and purchasing products over the internet whereas e-business is a broader term that means running a business using the internet. It includes selling and purchasing products, offering different services and all the other processes related to a business such as supply chain management, communication, customer-client relation, etc.
Similarities between E-commerce & E-business
E-business is a superset and e-commerce is a subset of e-business. As both are a part of each other, they’re interchangeable and have a lot of similarities such as:
1- Service Providing Website
Whether you’re doing e-commerce or e-business, you must need a service-providing website for that. Such a website will explain the information about your products and services to the customers and help them make a better decision before making a purchase.
2- Interaction with Customer
Interacting with the customers is necessary for e-commerce and e-business to improve the business. Moreover, doing this brings value to the customers and keeps them coming back.