Final Questions and Answers
- Describe the three different stages in the evolution of e-commerce.
The three stages in the evolution of e-commerce are invention, consolidation, and reinvention. Invention took place from 1995–2000 and was characterized by excitement and idealistic visions of markets in which quality information was equally available to both buyers and merchants. E-commerce did not fulfill these visions during its early years, however. After 2000, e-commerce entered its second stage of development—consolidation. In this stage, more traditional firms began to use the Web to enhance their existing businesses. Less emphasis was placed on creating new brands. In 2006, though, e-commerce entered its current stage—reinvention—as social networking and Web 2.0 applications reinvigorated e-commerce and encouraged the development of new business models.
- What are the eight key components of an effective business model?
The eight key components of an effective business model are:
- Value proposition
- Revenue model
- Market opportunity for the firm (the marketspace and how big it is)
- Competitive environment for the firm (who the competitors are in the marketspace)
- Competitive advantage the firm brings to the marketspace (the unique qualities that set the firm apart from others in the marketspace)
- Market strategy the firm will use to promote its products and services
- Organizational development of the firm that will enable it to carry out its business plan
- Capabilities of the management team to guide the firm in its endeavors
- Name the main pieces of the e-commerce site puzzle and define the systems development life cycle as a systematic approach.
The six main pieces of the e-commerce site puzzle are the organizational capabilities and human resources you will need to build and manage the site, the hardware, the software, the telecommunications infrastructure you will need to meet the demands of your customers, and the site design you will need to implement your business objectives.
The systems development life cycle is a methodology for understanding the business objectives of any system so that an appropriate solution can be designed. The five major steps in the SDLC for an e-commerce site are systems analysis, systems design, building the system, testing the system, and implementation. In the systems analysis step, the business objectives for the site are identified. The list of the necessary capabilities for the site is translated into lists of the types of information systems and the elements of information that will be needed to achieve them. Next, the main components in the system and their relationships to one another must be identified. The system design includes a data flow diagram and the physical components that will need to be purchased. After the system has been built and programmed, the program modules must be tested one at a time and then the site must be tested as a whole, examining every conceivable path a user might try to utilize while on the site. Implementation of an e-commerce site includes the continuing maintenance that will be needed over the life of the site to keep it functional, including correcting mistakes and continuing to improve, update, and modify links and other site features.
- Describe your term project briefly, what task do you take in this project? Describe the challenges and experiences you face in the project.