The digital age is in full swing. As such, the traditional workplace is being reshaped and re-imagined in ways never before possible.
Gone are the days when “going to work” strictly meant walking into a building. Now, employees can work for — and run — businesses from just about anywhere, using their smart devices to plug in and stay connected.
It comes as no surprise then, that e commerce business models are popping up everywhere. Given that there are more than one billion websites on the Internet, it seems there’s a way for almost every industry to digitize and automate their operations for profit.
Yet, not all business models are created equal. Today, we’re taking a look at some that are indeed sustainable and viable options for interested business people.
E Commerce Business Models: Start Your Journey Today
Ready to get started? Let’s go!
#1) Business to Consumer
Today, there are subscription boxes delivering everything from tackle gear to dog treats to your doorstep.
Then, there are the myriad online retailers that allow visitors to browse and buy with the click of a button. You can even access “buy” buttons on your favorite social media accounts thanks to the incredible rise of social shopping.
Now, if you can dream it, you can probably hop online and find it.
That’s why Business to Consumer (B2C) is one of the hottest, and most talked about, e commerce business models around.
Studies show that online retail itself will grow between 8% and 12% this year, equaling between $427 billion and $443 billion in sales.
If your business offers a product or a service that you think customers would seek out and buy online, the time is ripe to make the leap to virtual selling.
#2) Business to Business
Though B2C business models might be what you initially think of when you consider e commerce, the reality is that there is a thriving market for businesses that create products and services designed to help other businesses succeed.
That’s the basic idea behind a Business to Business (B2B) model.
Forrester predicts that the U.S. B2B e commerce industry will top $1 trillion by 2020, accounting for more than 12% of all B2B sales.
Online marketplaces built around B2B transactions are a great example of this model at work.
One example? Amazon Business, which launched in 2015. This business-only marketplace requires a business registration and vetting process to join. In this way, it differs from the online giant’s main site, which anyone can access and buy from.
Do you think your business could benefit from selling to other businesses? If so, the best place to start is to find and adjust a business proposal template specific to your industry.
Then, determine where to plug in.
If you opt to skip the marketplace route, you can also organize your wares into an online catalog. Or, you can create another type of business website where professionals can browse according to their industry needs.
#3) Consumer to Consumer
Sometimes, shoppers aren’t looking for a product available in a big-box retailer’s online store.
Rather, they’re looking for a specialty, handcrafted, or hard-to-find piece that can only be created or sold by another individual.
Consumer to Consumer (C2C) e commerce business models are designed around this idea. These are spaces where consumers sell directly to consumers, often setting their own terms, prices, and more.
Some of the most popular examples are eBay, Etsy, and Amazon. In these online marketplaces, sellers can establish an online “shop” to promote their wares.
This business model is especially fitting for individuals or groups that have a niche talent, such as hand-lettering or crocheting, as artists can find a creative, and often lucrative, outlet in this realm.
Over to You
Now that we’ve discussed some proven options, are you interested in learning more about how to make money online? If so, we’d love to help.
From online job openings to blogging tips, we provide the current, relevant business knowledge you need to turn the Internet into a powerful selling tool.
Feel free to browse some of our topics, and don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions. Let’s take that first step together toward the flexible, rewarding, and lucrative career change you deserve!