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How does an eCommerce Site Function?

Journey from Barter to Digital

At present time eCommerce is the most popular form of sale and purchase for common people. Since time immemorial, people have been visiting shops to purchase various items of their need. In ancient times, the mode of the transaction was usually through a barter system where an item was exchanged with another item. For example, an ordinary farmer used his crops such as paddy, wheat, pulses, or vegetables to buy items like clothes, footwear, soap, oil, etc. from shopkeepers.

However, the mode of transaction changed when the concept of money was introduced. Now people use coins and currency notes to buy products of everyday use. There were coins and notes of every denomination to make the process easier. Money-based transactions continued for thousands of years until other alternatives became available. Around thirty years back, banks came up with the idea of plastic money through credit and debit cards.

The introduction of card-based payment systems revolutionized the entire process of the transaction. It made the life of common people more convenient because handling especially big cash was a big problem. It wasn’t considered safe to carry a large amount of money due to the possibility of theft. Moreover, by using a debit or credit card, you could also withdraw money at your convenience.

Read more – How Artificial Intelligence is Evolving Ecommerce

Advent of eCommerce

It was the mid-nineties when ICICI came up with the idea of net banking. It was a huge game-changer as people were not prepared for anything like that. This brought digital banking to people’s homes. It changed the way financial transactions took place. Now, there was no need to visit banks to withdraw cash, transfer money and book a fixed deposit. Everything was possible through the click of a mouse. You just needed a mobile phone, a user ID, and a password.

In fact, the mid-nineties was the time when the mobile revolution took pace all over the world. Together with the growth in digital banking, it changed the way people made purchases. As internet penetration increased, eCommerce websites like Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal, Paytm, and Myntra came. Gradually, these virtual shops became more popular as consumers loved the freedom and choice of products available on these sites.

How did these sites function?

Essentially. eCommerce sites are online traders who buy products in bulk from manufacturers and wholesalers at competitive prices and offer them to consumers at attractive rates. They maintain huge warehouses, and a large supply chain of packers, handlers, couriers, and delivery men. They also have registered vendors and suppliers to whom the eCommerce companies forwarded the orders received from people. Most of these vendors were either small-time manufacturers or dealers who lacked the proper infrastructure to sell their products. It was a win-win model for eCommerce companies and vendors as well as consumers.

To make purchases from an eCommerce site, people needed to open an account by providing their mobile numbers and giving details such as names and mailing addresses. Once these details were filled in, the user received an OTP on his mobile number to complete the verification process. After the verification process, the user can buy everything that was available on that particular site.

Ecommerce sites are convenient

They just need to type a few words related to the product they are looking for, and an instantly wide choice of items is available. You can select the product as per your choice and preference, and put it in the cart or bag. If you have more items to purchase, you can repeat the process and put everything on the card.

After you are through with your selection, you can go back to the cart and move towards payment. You will be again given a multiple choice of making your payment either through debit/credit card, wallet payment, and net banking. If you are not comfortable with any of these methods, you can also make payment in cash on delivery.

What you can purchase on these sites?

You can literally purchase anything under the sky on eCommerce sites. It doesn’t matter whether you are looking for clothes, shoes, jewelry, electronic items, mobile phones, laptops, or food items like chocolates, sweets, or cakes, everything is available on these sites. The popularity of eCommerce sites has also inspired social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, Snapdeal, and Twitter to enter the field of eCommerce. In fact, there is hardly any Indian social media app that is not promoting eCommerce on their site.

If you are not comfortable with any of these methods, you can also make payment in cash on delivery. If you are not comfortable with any of these methods, you can also make payment in cash on delivery. A consumer cannot ask for more and that is the main reason why eCommerce websites have become such a huge range among all groups of people.



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