As the internet grows, the number of merchant sites increases

As the internet grows, the number of merchant sites increases. At the end of 2007, the number of merchant sites in France was estimated at 32,000. Attracting customers to its site became more and more expensive and complex, which made the economic balance of many sites difficult.

There are many electronic transactions, but the network also makes it possible to circumvent market logic and, therefore, does not necessarily lead to the creation of economic value (Peer-to-peer exchange of music or videos between individuals, sale of counterfeits, recovery wild content of information infringing copyright, etc.)

The digitization of information goods is strongly re-composing the value chains of industries such as the press, publishing, communication and entertainment (music, cinema, games, television). This recomposition is leading to major restructuring in these industries, with losses significant use.

The factors favoring the development of electronic commerce:

        a-the technological environment: electronic commerce combines the use of terminals and networks. If broadband access to the Internet is an essential factor, access to connected connected terminals is also one, as is the variety of accesses to the Internet. The development of Wi-Fi wireless networks (http: //fr/wikipedia.org/wiki/Wi-fi) widens the possibilities of access to Internet in its public areas like the stations, the airports or even the hotel. The availability of inexpensive connection terminals is also a key factor in equipping consumers. In this respect, the development of high-speed wireless mobile telephone networks (3G and 3G +) has made it possible to transform the mobile telephone into an Internet access terminal, which multiplies the number of potential e-commerce customers by the same amount. The arrival of “intelligent” mobile terminals (smartphones) with internet capacities equivalent to those of a laptop (Wi-Fi, simple navigation interface) will democratize internet access.

b-public infrastructure: the growth in online sales is strongly correlated with the penetration rate of broadband Internet access. Consequently, the network infrastructure allowing Internet access constitutes a significant factor in the development of electronic commerce. broadband access is highly dependent on the quality of a country’s telecommunications infrastructure. Indeed, the main access technology, ADSL, is very dependent on the physical quality of the telephone lines and the distance between the end customer and the telephone exchange (http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/ADSL ). Furthermore, for the maximum number of citizens to be able to access this technology, it is necessary for the public authorities to favor, through an appropriate legal framework, the development of Internet access throughout the territory. In this regard, the delegation of public service entrusted to local authorities facilitates the deployment of broadband access in low density regions in which private operators are reluctant to invest.

       c-the rate of computer equipment: The rate of computer equipment of consumers is a fundamental factor of electronic development. Even if there are alternatives to connecting to the Internet (connection from the workplace, cyber cafes, public kiosks), most consumers prefer to use their personal equipment to place an order online. This IT equipment constitutes a real cost of access to electronic commerce, a cost which had been made zero when the Minitel was introduced in France by free distribution of the connection terminal. The penetration rate of micro-computing in French households exceeded 50% in 2005 and reached 55% in 2006. This rate is notoriously one of the lowest in the European Union. Northern Europe (Denmark, Sweden) has penetration rates above 80%. The United States has a rate of 65% and Japan, 78%.

Emergence of electronic commerce

   the appearance of the internet in the economic field at the end of the 1990s led to a real upheaval in the conduct of business in a very large number of industrial sectors. After a phase of euphoria and bursting of the Internet bubble, companies gradually invested this network in order to develop their activities. this is called e-business. These activities are very varied since they include consulting online bank accounts, buying and selling financial securities, paying taxes online, buying trips, etc.

   Understanding this whole leads to a risk of dispersion, or even inconsistency. E-commerce is seen as a subcategory of the larger field of e-business.

Since the internet was opened to the general public, the internet has gradually transformed into an electronic distribution channel in which businesses and consumers exchange and market goods and services. Designed for military and then university purposes, the Internet was not intended as a first line for carrying out commercial transactions and replacing other distribution channels. however, this transformation of the internet into an economic space was very rapid, and it is now an essential market space. however, the place of the internet varies widely across economic sectors. after a euphoric start-up phase in the early 2000s, the internet returns to more complex realities than the simple switch from physical to electronic transactions. After presenting the current reality, the trends of electronic commerce and the factors that influence its development, it will be necessary to look into the definition of electronic commerce, as the uses of the internet for commercial purposes are many and different. it is also important to understand the variety of different business models possible in this digital space. Finally, the reasons for the use of such a channel for consumers and for businesses must be examined in order to understand the interest of this form of commerce.

In addition, many commercial transactions are carried out by telephone for distance selling. it is also possible to carry out certain commercial transactions directly from a mobile phone.

  Electronic commerce is a very diverse emerging reality depending on the economic sector. It is still difficult to draw generalities valid in all economic sectors for this type of trade.

  Sometimes seen as an El Dorado, electronic commerce experiences a more contrasted reality:

turnover regularly increases by around 30 to 40% per year, but electronic commerce today only represents around 60 billion euros in France. In the United States, electronic commerce (B2C) represented only 2.5% of retail trade in 2005 and 3.4% at the end of 2007 (http://www.census.gov/mrts/www/data/html/07Q3 .html).

In Europe, e-commerce in 2007 (27 countries) represented 4.5% of business turnover compared to 2.1% in 2004 with significant differences between countries: in Ireland, e-commerce represented 9.8% of business turnover , 8.5% in Norway, 7% in Great Britain, less than 1% in Slovakia and Italy.

The turnover of electronic commerce in Morocco should reach 100 million DH at the end of 2009, against 31 million DH in 2008. The number of commercial sites increased from 16 at the end of 2008 to more than 60 at the end of last October. To boost the sector, several measures have been taken, including the creation of a committee responsible for the security of computer systems reporting to the National Council for Information Technology and the Digital Economy and the development of a charter relating to online marketing sites in partnership with professionals.

Companies present on the Internet exist in large numbers and are sometimes profitable … but a leader like Pixmania only achieves in France the turnover of a handful of hypermarkets (Carrefour has more than 200 on French soil).