Ecommerce (electronic commerce) is the activity of electronically buying or selling of products on online services or over the Internet.
Ecommerce draws on technologies such as mobile commerce, electronic funds transfer, supply chain management, Internet marketing, online transaction processing, electronic data interchange (EDI), inventory management systems, and automated data collection systems. Ecommerce is in turn driven by the technological advances of the semiconductor industry, and is the largest sector of the electronics industry.
The term was coined and first employed by Dr. Robert Jacobson, Principal Consultant to the California State Assembly’s Utilities & Commerce Committee, in the title and text of California’s Electronic Commerce Act, carried by the late Committee Chairwoman Gwen Moore (D-L.A.) and enacted in 1984.
Ecommerce typically uses the web for at least a part of a transaction’s life cycle although it may also use other technologies such as e-mail. Typical ecommerce transactions include the purchase of products (such as books from Amazon) or services (such as music downloads in the form of digital distribution such as iTunes Store). There are three areas of e-commerce: online retailing, electronic markets, and online auctions.
Ecommerce is supported by electronic business. The existence value of ecommerce is to allow consumers to shop online and pay online through the Internet, saving the time and space of customers and enterprises, greatly improving transaction efficiency, especially for busy office workers, but also saving a lot of valuable time.