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2000 E-Commerce Predictions

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January 1, 2000 *3,000 subscribers* Volume 2, Issue 1
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ECnow.com 2000 trends: Year 2000 E-Commerce Predictions


Predictions From Key E-Commerce Luminaries

Our bulletin board allows readers to comment on trends and issues throughout the month. Please stop by to add your comments and see all the responses at http://ecmgt.com/bulletinboard.htm

Question of the Month

The topic for January focuses on e-commerce predictions for 2000. We've asked a number of e-commerce luminaries to respond.

Selected Answers of the Month


  1. Business to Business E-Commerce will proliferate more widely (according to Catalog Age, out of the top 40% of companies on the Web, B-to-B customers already account for 73% of the revenue)

  2. More businesses will bypass distributors and go consumer direct and make use of E-Commerce to do so. (according to Peppers and Rogers Group, consumer direct (all, not just Internet generated) will be a $1.1 trillion business in 2010, up from $190 billion in 1998)

  3. Many companies will consider outsourcing the order fulfillment function after finding that they were ill-equipped to handle e-Christmas 1999

  4. Boom in Internet-based financial services industry (including EBPP, insurance, banking)

  5. Small-to-medium sized enterprises will rapidly adopt E-Commerce channels for procurement and sales

  6. Dynamic pricing models (auctions etc.) will continue to prevail and proliferate

  7. Legal experts will continue to find existing laws to be antiquated for use with and for business models spawned by E-Commerce

  8. Adoption of the ASP (application service provider) model for software distribution

  9. "Click and Mortar" companies will gain strength in 2000 by leveraging their strong brands, deep pockets and established infrastructures

  10. E-Commerce will boom in Europe and Asia (more than 60 million Europeans will be online)

Source: Mark Rhoney, President, ec.UPS.com


  1. M&A marketplace will accelerate - great companies sprinting but they won't reach their goal

  2. Confusion on platforms and standards (who is your e-commerce partner) - lack of a network effect

  3. Continuing lack of clarity of standardized data of e-business products (e-commerce will be hampered by it) cleaning and maintaining data will continue to be a problem

  4. Corporate denial of e-commerce will end (talking the talk, not walking the walk)

    • However, less than 10% will have really pledged their business model to the net

  5. Continue to see an unbelievable migration of high-level executives from Fortune 2000 companies to dot.com companies which will fuel #1

Source: Mark Walsh, President and CEO, Verticalnet.com


  1. B-to-B Exchanges Get Real

  2. Revenge of the Brick-and-Mortar

  3. Industrial Strength e-Services

  4. Eyeballs? Schmyballs!

  5. Device services on the Web

Source: Chris Davis, VP, Consulting & Systems Integration, CSC


  1. B-B market spaces will grow very fast

  2. New B-B market places will learn and happily borrow from the current B-C best practices

  3. Application syndication across the Internet (through XML integration) millions of applications with seemly integration (Ariba.com, Commerceone.com, Isyndicate.com, etc.)

  4. Pure Web integrators will become critical to B-to-B marketplaces since every aspect of the enterprise needs to be touched (from catalog, to ERP to Web)

  5. ASPs will increase visibility and gain/acquire key customers

Source: Zor Gorelove, Founder and CEO, Buzzcompany.com


  1.  The Dinosaurs Start Getting Their Act Together - The year of awakening for the traditional incumbents: at least with respect to B2C, wills the consecration of the cyber-physical business model. Companies with assets like stores, distribution networks, and even public kiosks will find they can win long-term against virtual-only players. They can project their brand, acquire customers, and fulfill orders more cheaply and effectively through their physical assets, while using the power of the Web to sustain customer relationships and grow share of wallet.  The market will start to appreciate the "last mover advantage" and the ability of traditional players to learn lessons at the expense of the earlier pure-play pioneers.

  2.  The Advent of ESPs - A proliferation of B-to-B electronic markets will result in the emergence of eMarket Service Providers (ESPs).  ESPs will start to provide a one-stop source of technology, application hosting and process management for electronic markets. As the world economy rapidly evolves into a web of networks, Internet-based organizations are being formed at breakneck speeds to accommodate this revolution. These organizations demand the most cost-effective and timely solutions to support their online transactional needs. Providing the backbone for e-markets, ESPs will reduce organizations' upfront costs, increases operational efficiency and radically reduces the time-to-market for new electronic markets.

  3.  A Rapid Blurring Between B-to-B and B2C - Distinctions between B-to-B and B2C will continue to blur - companies will realize that this is a ridiculous distinction and that B-to-B can learn a lot from B2C and vice versa.  The real distinction will be Person to Person, Person to Machine, and Machine to Machine interactions.  This is where the true differences will emerge.

  4.  The Proliferation of Wireless eBusiness - The explosion of mobile data will be the big news of 2000 -- following the dramatic growth in Japan of email via cellular phones (2 million users, 9 months after launch). Both in Europe with GSM and in the US with PCS-type systems this application is set to boom. Especially because (arguably) Europe but certainly the US have far more sophisticated eCommerce players than those present in Japan, and mobile data usage will therefore leap beyond basic email capabilities.

Source: Narry Singh, Partner, The McKenna Group


  1. Universal perception that e-business will hit like a tidal wave in Y2k

  2. Outsourcing, telecommuting, mobile workers

  3. XML as a fundamental building block for e-business interoperability

  4. Business-to-business inter-organizational virtual enterprises

  5. Personal e-business/e-commerce Web servers - one per person or processor

  6. Supplanting of ERP systems with lighter more dynamic web-based applications

  7. In-store competitive pricing using wireless access and shop-bots by consumer

  8. Complete failure of the shipping industry to account for growth in e-commerce

  9. Just-in-time pricing

  10. Wireless and handheld technologies incorporated in line of business processes

Source: Dr. Gregory Alan Bolcer, CEO/Founder, Endeavors Technology


  1.  Fulfillment and logistics become top concerns and competitive advantages for those who do it correctly.

  2.  A further melding of online and offline marketing/sales so that one complements the other and both are channels for the parent company, rather than separate entities.

  3.  More consolidation of one-service-only online businesses into full-service sites, raising the entrance barrier for newcomers.

  4.  Software vendors of online technologies will turn more to selling their software as products, rather than building online services around the products.

  5.  There will be a major breach of privacy that catalyzes the public into being more concerned about giving personal data in exchange for online services, free or not.

Source: Gay Slesinger, Principal, iMarket Strategies


  1.  Communities will continue to be a driving force for e-commerce.

  2.  The manifestation of this community movement will be the evolution of portals into net market makers and BRANDING will take on a new significance.  The building, establishing, and defending of brands on the Net will be a very hot topic in 2000.

  3.  Privacy will continue to grow in importance.  There will be continued confusion over privacy vs. security.  Legislation will be proposed but not passed in 2000.

  4.  Microsoft will continue to dominate the news.  No matter what the legal outcome, their stock will continue to rise -- either as a single company or a conglomerate of smaller baby-Bills.  (Judge Greene rules from the grave).

  5.  Continued strong economy will drive the NASDAQ to even greater highs - over 5000 by year-end!

Source: Stacey Bressler, E-Commerce Strategy and Marketing Consultant


  1. Biz to biz continues to take the lead

  2. Traditional companies (non-tech) begin leveraging Internet commerce in a significant way

  3.  EDI will become relegated to a small % of overall commerce transactions.

Source: Todd Elizalde, Director, Internet Commerce & Customer Advocacy, Cisco Systems


  1. Much faster Internet access, maybe 100 times faster than today's speed plus new business applications designed to work with the faster Internet rather than with the dial-up speeds currently being used

  2.  Far greater emphasis on "B-to-B" e-commerce vs. consumer e-commerce

  3.  Erosion of traditional sales channels

  4. Growth of sites that offer intelligent surfing so the customer can quickly "home in" on specifically what he is looking for

  5.  Continued momentum.  Our society has discovered the Internet and we are fast moving toward doing the major part of our commerce through the Internet

Source: Bill McLain, Webmaster, Xerox


  1. A higher quest for value creation

  2.  The B-to-B space will be further segmented. Horizontal models such as VerticalNet will fight with super-deep verticals for domain-court advantage.

  3.  The domination of the major companies in the B2C space will continue in 2000. The amount of investment required to displace first-movers will increase dramatically and ultimately will only be accomplished by large cap business or through roll-ups.

Source: Peter M.Ostrow, President and CEO, TestMart


  1. Much more concern about privacy - including privacy issues with respect to both data gathered off-web-site (ie, by software) or by merging of data from web-site with off-line data acquired by other means.
  2.  Tax issues will heat up.

  3.  Federalism will be an issue - on several fronts; tax, electronic signatures and documents, privacy, spam, etc.

Source: Kaye Caldwell, President and Policy Director, Silicon Valley Software Industry Coalition


  • "Wallets.  People will prefer to enter their personal information (including credit card, name, address, etc.) once."

Source: Bahar Gidwani, CEO, indexstock.com


  1.  Independent trading exchanges or vertical marketplaces will be the story.  I just came back from an the NetMarketMaker event where 800 people attended.  It was amazing, on-line marketplaces for things like chicken, eggs and beef!!!!!  

  2.  B-to-B Sell side e-commerce will explode with regards to Channel Management. Vendors like Click Interactive will excel by Web enabling complex distribution channels.

Source: Scott Latham, AMR Research, Senior Analyst, E-Business


  •  For 2000 I'd like to think it is broad band (big pipes into home and business), but I am afraid that we could be looking at another decade of "the year of the LAN."  If it does happen, then we're looking at rich multimedia coming on the heels of MP3 as the next revolution.  Virtual conferencing is already taking off.  All it needs to become a routine part of the home life and business practice is real time two way video.  Will that happen in 2K?  Probably not.  But transmission of full motion video might, and that is the last step before real time interactive video.  We're already closer than many realize.

Source: Brad Peppard, Marketing Consultant


  •  "XML will continue to become an integral part of of B2B commerce in 2000, and promises to ultimately will be the lubricant for friction free trade"

Source: Steve Broback, President, Thunder Lizard Productions


  • "Within two years, personalization technology will play a significant role in 80% of all marketing efforts -- whether online or off."

Source: Steve Larsen, Senior Vice President, Net Perceptions



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