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Grow Your Business Using B2B Emarketplace - Part I
If you are a small to medium size company and selling or planning to sell products and services over the Net and still did not try out emarketplaces, you are simply loosing a great opportunity!
Research firm eMarketer predicts that worldwide B2B ecommerce revenues will surpass US$ 1.4 trillion by the end of 2003. In the United States alone revenues will total US$ 721 billion. By 2004, the US B2B ecommerce revenues are expected to reach US$ 1.01 trillion and studies show that a significant portion of these transactions will be conducted through emarketplaces.
What is an Emarketplace?
In a broader sense, business to business emarketplace is an online platform where buyers and sellers come to communicate, collaborate and make business transactions. Emarketplace caters a large number of participant companies as a community. The main objective of an emarketplace is to create a venue, filled with features that allow members to efficiently conduct significant portion of business processes on the Net. Emarketplaces are also known as B2B exchanges.
Types of Emarketplaces
There are varieties of emarketplaces available on the Internet to suit your company's specific need.
Can your company benefit from an Emarketplace?
Whether you are primarily a buyer or a supplier, participation in emarketplace can generate enormous benefits to your company - both in cost savings and productivity increase.
Benefits that you can have as a buyer
Automate the purchasing procedure
Comparison shopping at its best
Reduce sourcing time cycle
Real time access to current product information
Control rogue spending
Benefit that you can have as a seller
New sales channel
Low customer acquisition cost
Improve customer service
Efficient information sharing method
Reduce supply chain cost
You may ask, if participation in an emarketplace is so beneficial, why companies are not flocking to emarketplaces.
The slower adoption can be blamed on various inadvertent factors:
What to look in an Emarketplace?
As an online venue, where participants expect to conduct substantial part of their business processes, emarketplace has a large range of useful features:
Apart from these, some emarketplaces boast other interesting features like auction and reverse auction, new product listing notification, business forum, XML interface, Internal messaging system. Naturally, implementation of these features may vary significantly emarketplace to emarketplace.
Where to look for Emarketplace?
The best place to find an extensive list of emarketplaces is the B2B directory site: http://www.bocat.com.
The open directory project DMOZ has a good list of emarketplaces. However, not all listings in both of these places are, in reality, emarketplaces. Some of them are simple trade boards. This list is located at http://dmoz.org/Business/E-Commerce/Marketplaces/
Yahoo! directory is not organized well enough to locate emarketplaces. They are scattered under the subcategories: Vertical marketplace builders, Trade directories and even Trade.
Forbes magazine has a quality list of many B2B companies including some emarketplaces. You will find the list at: http://www.forbes.com/bow/b2b/main.jhtml
To be continued in next issue: Selecting the right Emarketplace.
Nowshade Kabir is the founder, primary developer and present CEO of Rusbiz.com. A Ph. D. in Information Technology, he has wide experience in Business Consulting, International Trade and Web Marketing. Rusbiz is a Global B2B Emarketplace with solutions to start and run online business. You can contact him at mailto:nowshade[at]rusbiz.com, http://ezine.rusbiz.com, http://www.rusbiz.com
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