Page 2: The nature of e-commerce & e-business
E-commerce is the buying and selling of products and services by businesses and consumers over the Internet and through other electronic media. E-business is when a company e-enables its processes to do business in a more efficient way using Web technologies. This might include procuring goods and services, dealing with customers as well as selling products.
E-commerce is not a new phenomenon. Indeed, IBM is a long-established provider of communication networks. Organisations have been using these to exchange business data for many years. The exponential growth of the Internet has driven the accelerated expansion of this process. Until recently, e-commerce was concentrated on business-to-consumer activity (B2C) hence the explosion of .com companies. However, the development of the Web has made business-to-business (B2B) activity possible, leading to the development of a host of what are termed Internet exchanges.