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Doing business at Internet speed

What is the difference between E-commerce and E-Business? Surely, some of you might ask this question. E-commerce is buying and selling using an electronic medium. It is accepting credit and payments over the net, doing banking transactions using the Internet, selling commodities or information using the www and so on.

E-business is the convergence and fusion and fusion of business process, enterprise applications, business infrastructure, technology, information and organizational structure necessary to create a high performance business. Better one must realize that it is not possible for an organization to execute E-commerce transactions efficiently and effectively without first transforming to the E-Business model.

During the last decade few concepts have revolutionized business more profoundly than E-commerce. E-commerce is here to stay and E-commerce are the key industry drivers in the world today. No company can survive in this brutally competitive environment if they ignore E-commerce. E-commerce, more specifically business-to-consumer has changed the way companies do business. It has changed the way consumers buy products and services. It has changed life for commission agents, brokers, dealmakers and the like. It has brought the consumers and manufacturers or service providers closer than ever before. It has created new distribution channels, new customers and new business opportunities.

In the Internet parlance, the companies that operate in the traditional mode are called "brick and mortar companies". These brick and mortar companies do business in the old-fashioned way. They do not use web or Internet for their business operations, at least not in a major way. So, the big question is whether your organization is ready for E-commerce or is it still in the brick and mortar mode. Is your organization capable of doing business at Internet speed?

In Order to do business in this digital marketplace, adopting E-commerce is not enough. The entire business operations have to be reengineered. The reengineering should be done keeping in mind that the end result is to do business at Internet speed. When an organization has geared itself, transformed its business structures and cultures and is ready to do business in today's connected world, this organization can be called as an e-business.

E-business is not just about E-commerce transactions; it's about re-defining old business models, with the aid of technology to maximize customer value. E-Business is the overall strategy and E-commerce is an extremely important facet of E-Business.

This transformation includes both front and back-office applications that form the engine for modern E-commerce. Thus e-business involves not merely setting up the company web site and being able to accept credit card payments or being able to sell products or services on time. It involves fundamental re-structuring and streamlining of the business using technology. Yes we are talking about enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems and its related applications.

With the advent of Internet and the WWW applications such as web-based ERP, world business scenario is making a drastic change. To transform a traditional organization to do E-Business involves using technology to the fullest. Technological advancements are making things better, bigger and bolder. Businesses are capable of doing things that were unimaginable a few years back. For example, an organization can now receive a purchase order and notify the customer within seconds after the customer has confirmed the order, customers can do the order cancellations without involving anybody from the company, and can track the order status of the shipment on-time over the Internet.