On the Internet, B2B (business-to-business), also known as e-biz, is the exchange of products, services, or information between businesses rather than between businesses and consumers. Although early interest centered on the growth of retailing on the Internet (sometimes called e-tailing), forecasts are that B2B revenue will far exceed business-to-consumers (B2C) revenue in the near future. According to studies published in early 2000, the money volume of B2B exceeds that of e-tailing by 10 to 1. Over the next five years, B2B is expected to have a compound annual growth of 41%. The Gartner Group estimates B2B revenue worldwide to be $7.29 trillion dollars by 2004. In early 2000, the volume of investment in B2B by venture capitalists was reported to be accelerating sharply although profitable B2B sites were not yet easy to find.
B2B Web sites can be sorted into:
- Company Web sites, since the target audience for many company Web sites is other companies and their employees. Company sites can be thought of as round-the-clock mini-trade exhibits. Sometimes a company
- Web site serves as the entrance to an exclusive extranetavailable only to customers or registered site users. Some company Web sites sell directly from the site, effectively e-tailing to other businesses.
- Product supply and procurement exchanges, where a company purchasing agent can shop for supplies from vendors, request proposals, and, in some cases, bid to make a purchase at a desired price. Sometimes referred to as e-procurement sites, some serve a range of industries and others focus on a niche market.
- Specialized or vertical industry portals which provide a "subWeb" of information, product listings, discussion groups, and other features. These vertical portal sites have a broader purpose than the procurement sites (although they may also support buying and selling).
- Brokering sites that act as an intermediary between someone wanting a product or service and potential providers. Equipment leasing is an example.
- Information sites (sometimes known as infomediary), which provide information about a particular industry for its companies and their employees. These include specialized search sites and trade and industry standards organization sites.
Many B2B sites may seem to fall into more than one of these groups. Models for B2B sites are still evolving.
Another type of B2B enterprise is software for building B2B Web sites, including site building tools and templates, database, and methodologies as well as transaction software.
B2B is e-commerce between businesses. An earlier and much more limited kind of online B2B prior to the Internet was Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), which is still widely used.
b2b - Intel selling micro processors to Dell
- Heinz selling ketchup to Mc Donalds
The term business-to-consumer, often called B2C, refers to transactions between a business and its end consumer. Examples of B2C transactions include individuals shopping for clothes to be given as birthday gifts, diners ordering food and eating in a restaurant, and TV watchers subscribing to satellite TV providers.
The term B2C differs from business-to-business (B2B) in that these transactions are done with no intent on the consumer’s part to use the product or service for commercial purposes.
If, for the example given above, the shopper bought the clothes in order to resell it in her online shop, that transaction would instead fall under B2B. If a person also buys food in bulk from a restaurant, then uses the food to cater to party and charges for the catering services, then the transaction will fall under B2B as well. For the third example above, if a business orders satellite TV pay-per-view programming such as a popular boxing event, and shows it in their bar with the intention of attracting more customers to come in for a drink, then that transaction would fall under B2B instead of B2C.
Though B2C refers to all business-to-consumer transactions the term is most commonly used for online selling of products. The effect of B2C transactions in the online scene is of such magnitude that retailers have become very vigilant in keeping their websites up-to-date and optimized to get the consumer traffic they want.
b2c - Dell selling me a laptop
- Mc Donalds selling me a Big Mac
Consumer-to-consumer (C2C) (or citizen-to-citizen) electronic commerce involves the electronically facilitated transactions between consumers through some third party. A common example is the online auction, in which a consumer posts an item for sale and other consumers bid to purchase it; the third party generally charges a flat fee or commission. The sites are only intermediaries, just there to match consumers. They do not have to check quality of the products being offered.
Consumer-to-consumer (C2C) marketing is the creation of a product or service with the specific promotional strategy being for consumers to share that product or service with others as brand advocates based on the value of the product. The investment into concepting and developing a top of the line product or service that consumers are actively looking for is equatable to a Business-to-consumer (B2C) pre launch product awareness marketing spend.
c2c - Mary buying an iPod from Tom on eBay
- Me selling a car to my neighbour