Growth of E-commerce Projections (10 Years Preview)
In the past 10 years, E-Commerce has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry. Every store has a website and an option to pay for goods through their site and have them shipped to your house. Wal-Mart, target, Kohl’s, JC Penny, Sears, and many other retailers have websites you can now visit to order their products. Wal-Mart, to name the obvious, has a purchase online and have pick up at the store option, where the associates will put your order in your car.
Note: (This article is part of Yosaki’s Ecommerce Scholarship competition – submitted in by Mr. Kelly Mitchell Sego)
This has boosted their sales because consumers no longer have to get out of their car to go inside the store. You can do all your shopping online, check out and go pick up your already pulled products. It’s all about convenience. Wal-Mart also delivers to your house. I’ve had friends who had milk delivered and it wasn’t spoiled because of the delivery system the retailers has in place.
The only difference between delivery and pick-up is it takes a few days for your order to appear at your front door. Amazon is another huge online retailer that has a working system they’ve created. They don’t have a store that consumers can physically visit, but if one pays for a prime membership, then you can get two-day shipping for free. Not to mention, they offer so many other online service such as prime video, music, kindle books, prime photos, and of course shopping for basically anything.
The restaurant industry also have similar online systems where you can order and online and utilize “curbside Pickup” at the restaurant or you can have your food delivered to you depending on the options of delivery the restaurant has. In addition to this, I’ve seen consumers order from the Green Bean Delivery Service. In my city, there is a Green Bean Delivery warehouse. This service offers natural and organic products, which appeal to those consumers who choose to eat non-hormonal foods. How this works is a customer signs up for services at no charge, places an order for groceries and once their order total hits a certain dollar amount, they will deliver it right to you house. You can set up a schedule for weekly/bi-weekly or even daily deliveries. If you don’t want your delivery, you can go online and cancel anytime.
I think it’s fascinating how ecommerce is changing how we shop. This brings me to my next topic; the online coupon/voucher system of shopping. This is a growing industry and is hitting the market by storm. Let me elaborate on how this is being utilized by companies and start-ups.
Starting a business is hard, but marketing your skills and expertise is a whole different ball of wax. Hard work builds character, but there’s nothing like marketing your business or services on the internet. Banner ads are almost a thing of the past. Now days in this technological era, social media and coupon/voucher codes are the best way to market your business, bring in new customers and keep existing ones. The coupon/voucher system is currently exploding online.
In the next five years, I foresee that most coupons will only be available online and the practice of “clipping coupons” will be a thing of the past. The coupon and voucher market will become mostly social media advertising I.E. The first 100 customers get an exclusive item from the store or $50 of free groceries etc.
There are two sides to this epidemic. The first is attracting new customers. The second is turning existing customers into brand ambassadors. Theses Brand Ambassadors push a company’s products on their own simply because they love them. They set the table for strong word of mouth advertising. A company keeps these ambassadors loyal customers by offering exclusive deals online to their biggest supporters.
A company attracts new customers by offering exclusive deals. A great example of a company that does just this is Groupon. Groupon is only available online and prides their business on offering discounts on other company’s products and services.
One may ask, “How does Groupon offer discounts on another company’s services?” Groupon contracts with companies and advertise their products and services on their website to bring in more customers. Meanwhile, these contracted companies hope to create a community of followers that are loyal to their company. Customers want companies to be focused and specialized towards a particular market. Groupon provides this very well. 120
In the next five years, I suspect Facebook and other social media sites will dominate the online coupon/voucher market. There are already tons of ads on Facebook that advertise cooking, fitness, home renovation/updates, shopping; the list goes on and on.
The Facebook push is for a customer to get something new from a store, a discount for signing up for a program or a stipend for signing up for an account etc. All the consumer has to do is share the company’s Facebook page, make a one-time purchase or sign up for email notifications. There is no doubt that social media advertising and online coupon/vouchers will dominate the
consumer market and it won’t take five years. It’s already happening. One more important aspect of human life E-commerce has simplified is the education system.
With E-Commerce, when one desires to start an online business or has a product they would like to market, there are websites that can be used to accomplish just this. BigCommerce, is a website where and innovator can “Customize your site, manage shipping and payments, and list your products on Amazon, eBay, and Facebook with the #1 ecommerce platform.” This sight and many others offer business start-ups to “Create their online Store.” Other websites that offer this type of service are Volusion, WIX.com, WooCommerce, 3D Cart, ShopSite and Shopify. These websites offer advice on how to sell your products, pick your store name, build your store online, hot to receive payments, how to select a proper shipping method, how to market your products and services and how to grow your business. This kind of education is essential for start-ups and these websites offer education for a small fee. Technology and E-Commerce go hand in hand and now I will explain the educational side to this epidemic. 160
Technology has grown exponentially and is quickly making its way into schools and learning environments around the world. Technological advancements are being made at such a rapid pace, they are leaving the learner more and more uneducated about the use of such equipment and lost in the way side of a technologically over-loaded world. With this being the case, there is a need for continual research and increased education to bridge the gap of technical illiteracy. There are many uses for technology in education and here are some of them. 100
Technology in education is improving communication. Third world countries that are normally hard to reach areas, can access their classes online with the use of eLearning tools. Tutors also can lecture students who are located eons away and learners can access their course curriculum through the use of online learning tools and websites. There are a variety of learning sources that not only aid the learner, but also the instructor. For a teacher, it is now easier than ever to provide Audio and visual education through the use of smart boards in the classroom.
Smart boards are interactive and allow the students to have hands on learning while in the classroom. This type of learning promotes the use computers for a healthy on-going educational learning source and tool. Also, college students can make their tuition payments online, look up class schedules and campus events. High school students who struggle academically can now take their high school courses online to help complete their schooling.
Likewise, there are many online libraries that can assist educators and students with reading materials. Teachers can post the assignments online through secure websites for learners to access. Students can upload assignments and lecturers can access and grade them. Students’ grades can be updated immediately with this tool.
These types of technological advancements provide immediacy to education. Instead of the practice of physically writing a paper and turning it in, a paper can by typed, spell checked and submitted all within the same sequence. This is the same on the educators end.
For example, if there is a change in the class syllabus, a professor can make the change online and the students can receive an email notification of the change. Students can also visit the schools website and view class schedules and/or degree courses for the preparation of attending college.
Most online schooling can be done at the leisure time of the learner. The teacher can upload a lesson and the students can go in and watch the lesson when they have time. This creates flexibility in learning which is extremely important when it comes to an adult juggling work, family and school. Students with different walks of life can now take their exams whenever it suits their schedules. This type of learning creates an atmosphere of any time learning, which is necessary in today’s busy society. 80
Information technology in education has improved and has also brought about easy access to different learning resources. I.T. has made it super easy to study. Students can now study together and participate in the same online class, no matter their different time zones. This promotes healthy study habits and camaraderie among different folks. Many school books come available with an audio download. This makes it simple for the learner to listen to course material on their smart phone, Ipads, laptops, tablets etc. Through eLearning, students can now study whenever they want with whomever they desire. This promotes cooperative learning
For children with disabilities, information technology has brought devices such as tablets, to help them with learning. Paraplegic students can communicate with the use of an Ipad or other smart devices. The hearing impaired can now better communicate visually with Technology where sign language is used. Children with other disabilities use their devices to listen to music and to calm themselves. 60
Audio-visual learning has improved drastically for both the learner and the teacher. Teachers can now use the internet as leverage in the classroom. Many lecturers integrate you tube in their lecturers for subject areas such as science, language, art and music. They incorporate different You Tube channels in their lessons to help enhance the environment. Combined learning is also improved by audio-visual methods. The incorporation of information technology in education has brought so many positive changes. 100
Most academic institutions utilize technology in at least one of the above mentioned ways. In my opinion, all schools should use technology as a tool for learning because it makes teaching more effective and aids in practical learning. Students alike should learn to embrace technology because in the future, it will soon be difficult to find a job that doesn’t include the use of some technology. The individual, who refuse to learn with the changing times, is the one who will be lost. These are some reasons why information technology should be used in education. 100/1900
E-Commerce has changed the way every-day citizens pay bills. I remember when I got my very first apartment. Yes, it was exciting. I was finally on my own working and paying my own bills, however, I didn’t know how to actually pay my bills. I had to call the utility companies and ask them how I could pay the amount due. I had to go to a store that accepted utility payments and to the cell phone store to pay my phone bill. I could also pay bills over the phone for a fee.
At this time, there wasn’t any online payment option that I knew of. As soon as online payments were an option, I used them. I don’t even get physical bills in the mail anymore. I opted in for paperless billing and my billing statements go straight to my email account. Making utility and phone payments are so much easier. All you do in log on the website put in your bank account information (some sights save your bank information) and make the payment.
The companies now send E-receipts to my email account and I receive text message receipts as well. I do all my banking online as well. I pay all my credit cards, car payments, car insurance etc online. It makes life so much easier. Currently, I have most my bills, including a mortgage on auto-pay so I don’t have to visit the websites. Additionally, I pay my home owners and personal property taxes online and the collector’s office emails me a receipt and sends me a physical receipt in the mail.
Last, but least, Paypal! Paypal is a secured website that offers safe and secure online transfer of funds. You can send and receive money into your Paypal account, pay bills and shop online at numerous retailers without the fear of identity theft. I have a Paypal account and I currently use it to purchase products from friends who are involved in direct selling; another form of E-Commerce selling. I pay for private services through my Paypal account and I actually pay my cell phone bill through this option. Almost every online retailer has an option to pay through Paypal. How this works is when you choose to pay through Paypal, Paypal sends the funds to the retailer using your bank information or credit card. Depending on how you have Paypal set up, you can have multiple payment options linked to your account or use a Paypal credit account, which works just like a credit card, but only used for Paypal. This makes shopping easy and secure. As advancements are made, online shopping will get even easier than it already is.
E-Commerce has changed the way society pays for everything. People like simple, easy, uncomplicated and convenient. The Technology industry has changed the way people shop for pay EVERYTHING!