E-commerce (electronic commerce) is the process of buying, selling or exchanging products and services electronically—usually via the Internet or a mobile device.
There are multiple benefits of e-commerce for companies. One is that the Internet has no business hours, meaning an online store can sell around the clock to anyone visiting the site anywhere in the world. E-commerce can also level the playing field for small businesses. With a well-designed website, a small business can reach as many people online as a much larger company. Plus, the site can leverage online branding, social media and Internet marketing techniques that tend to be cheaper than traditional marketing methods.
For some companies, e-commerce is the only way they sell. Others combine e-commerce with physical locations so they can reach customers in multiple ways. Other companies sell their goods through third-party marketplaces like Amazon, eBay and Etsy.