Vendors and merchants participating in the modern ecommerce marketplace can take pride in the variety of products available for sale online. In just a decade, the realm of ecommerce and online business has grown into the mirror image of the “real world” economy. Basically, anything you can buy in the real world, you can almost certainly buy online.
But one of the largest questions facing ecommerce and home-based businesses at the start of the new decade revolves around its future. Given the current economic doldrums, how will ecommerce and ecommerce businesses adapt and change to meet the present economic realities? Other questions are even more foreboding: Is it possible that ecommerce is finished as a practical, lucrative line of income generation? Could the current recession defeat ecommerce to the point of irrelevance? Is there any space left for the small businessman on the ecommerce marketplace?
The End Is Not Nigh
Such uncertainty is to be expected, but time has a way of showing that, in the overall scheme of things, conditions are seldom as dire as they appear. The ecommerce marketplace is going to change as a result of the current economic turmoil. However, it would have changed anyway, because as a medium of commerce it must change if it is continue to be a viable source of business traffic and economic development. Ecommerce will continue. In fact, it will come out of the recession stronger and more flexible than it was before.
New and Developing Trends Indicate the Marketplace’s Post-Recession Landscape
Some experts suggest that as the recession takes its toll on the larger online retailers, smaller and more versatile ecommerce businesses will grow to fill in the gaps in the online marketplace. These smaller, specialized “mom and pop” ecommerce businesses will flourish for lack of the competition from the larger retailers, collectively claiming a larger share of online business.
Many such smaller ecommerce websites and businesses will realize their growth by using a fulfillment service company to manage their order fulfillment and logistics needs. These companies work through all steps of the fulfillment process, from warehousing products to shipping and tracking and, in some cases, through the customer service phases.
Fulfillment service companies operate through contractual agreement with their clients. Typically, they extract a percentage of every product shipped, stored, or processed as their service fee. The exact percentage varies according to a number of considerations.