Difference between e-commerce and electronic commerce

Online shopping has increased exponentially, especially during the pandemic, when people are more inclined to order online from the comfort of their own homes. With this, e-commerce and e-commerce have become the two most important modes of business for online sellers. While these two elements may seem indistinguishable to some, and others may use them interchangeably, understanding the difference between them would help you design the right kind of online business model. So, let’s dive in to discover the difference between e-commerce and e-business starting with the basics.

What is e-commerce?

Electronic commerce is the abbreviation used for electronic commerce. Simply put, it is the buying and selling of products and services on the Internet. This online transaction can also include the sale, ordering and payment of the goods. We can even say that any sale made using the internet can be considered as e-commerce.

The process does not involve face to face interaction between buyer and seller. Buying, paying, and delivering the product are the three basic elements involved in every online sale. But, it is not mandatory that all three elements are involved in the process. You can order the product online using the Internet, then choose to pick it up in store and pay cash on delivery rather than paying online. As you can see, if not all three, at least one element is part of the process.

A website is a basic requirement for e-commerce. Traditional retailers can get a well-designed website to increase their online sales. An increasing number of individual sellers are also opting for virtual marketplaces to sell their goods and services.

A wide variety of business models can be supported by e-commerce. Here are the different types of e-commerce:

  • Business to Consumer (B2C) – This is the e-commerce business model in which products are sold by businesses to customers over the internet. The best example of this model would be when a single consumer purchases a laptop computer online.
  • Business to Business (B2B) – When the online transaction of goods and services takes place between two or more businesses, it is called the B2B e-commerce model. A good example is an online business selling antivirus software to other businesses to protect their systems.
  • Consumer to Consumer (C2C) – When a single customer sells products to other consumers through a third-party website, the online business transaction falls under C2C e-commerce. Transactions that take place on Olx or eBay are ideal examples.
  • Consumer to Business (C2B) – When an individual consumer makes an online sale of goods and services to a business, the business model is C2B. A client offering his skills to promote a company’s product at a fixed price can be considered as an example.

SEE ALSO: Reebelo e-commerce platform debuts in Australia

What is e-commerce?

Compared to e-commerce, the e-commerce model can seem a bit more complex to grasp. It stands for Electronic Business and is the model that facilitates business with others through the use of internet or electronic data exchange. This model helps establish the online presence of a business which has become very important nowadays.

In case you were wondering if there is any relationship between e-commerce and e-business, then electronic commerce can be considered a part of electronic commerce, but it is not necessarily its essential component. Unlike e-commerce, e-commerce is not just about buying and selling products online. Many other business activities and transactions carried out using electronic media are part of electronic commerce.

Take a look at the two types of ecommerce mentioned below.

  • Brick and Click – A brick and click eCommerce model is a model in which a business sells online as well as offline. In such a case, the business has established a web presence through electronic data interchange and also has a presence through stores or physical offices.
  • Pure Play – When a business invests all of its resources in selling a single line of business, it follows the pure e-commerce model. The best example would be a business that only sells custom jerseys and no other products, whether online or offline.

Here are some examples that will help you better understand e-commerce.

  • A human resource management tool that streamlines a company’s operations, such as the onboarding process and employee data management, is a great example of e-commerce.
  • Email marketing is also an ecommerce business because the process is done electronically and not manually.
  • Online software that tracks the journey of visitors to a website is e-commerce.

Simply put, any business process conducted electronically is an e-commerce activity.

SEE ALSO: Flow raises $ 37 million to simplify international e-commerce

E-commerce vs. e-commerce

Now that we have a clear understanding of what e-commerce and e-commerce are, let’s find out the main differences between the two business models.

  • E-commerce is a business model that makes it easy to buy and sell products online. When an online transaction takes place, it is called e-commerce. On the other hand, any business using online technologies in the business model is e-commerce. If a business is using the web to just market their products online and get more customers to their physical store, then that is e-commerce. An online transaction does not necessarily have to take place here.
  • As mentioned earlier, e-commerce is an important component of e-commerce, but it is not a requirement. The online buying and selling of goods and services does not have to take place for a business model to be e-commerce.
  • E-commerce uses the Internet to conduct transactions online. In this business model, activities take place through the use of the Internet. However, an electronic commerce uses the Internet, intranet, extranet or any other online technology to conduct its business.
  • The only requirement of e-commerce is a website through which a consumer can purchase products. An electronic business, on the other hand, requires a website, an enterprise resource planning tool, and customer management technology to run a business on the web.
  • Ecommerce is an outgoing business model that includes distributors, sellers, and customers. On the contrary, e-commerce is an ambivert business model that includes both external and internal business operations.


An e-commerce website can be thought of as an e-commerce website, but e-commerce is not necessarily e-commerce. Today, most of the businesses are following the e-commerce model using online technology. A small business using biometrics to mark employee attendance would also fall under e-commerce. In recent years, there has been an exponential increase in the emergence of e-commerce websites like Amazon, eBay, Alibaba, etc. Depending on what you want to have for your business, you can choose one of the two or even both. Business plans.

For more tech updates, keep reading iTMunch!

Previous Retail e-commerce market size, industry trends and forecast to 2028
Next Top 10 Best Vtech Electronic Drum Kits 2021 - Bestgamingpro