EzineECMgt.com: Jan2000: Volume 2, Issue 1 - Year 2000 E-Commerce Predictions

ECnow.com 2000 trends: Year 2000 E-Commerce Predictions


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January 1, 2000 *3,000 subscribers* Volume 2, Issue 1
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Theme: Year 2000 E-Commerce Predictions http://ecnow.com/top10trends2000.htm


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Year 2000 E-Commerce Predictions

by Mitchell Levy
Executive Producer, ECMgt.com


At the start of the 21st century we are at the beginning of a completely new way of interacting with our partners in both our professional and personal lives. The Internet and its incorporation into every aspect of our existence will change everything. To try to understand the transformation we are in the middle of, try picturing yourself as a farmer tilling your crops with an oxen at the turn of the 20th century. How could you, the 19th-century farmer, possibly imagine the industrial revolution that would transform the world in the 20th century.

 I am, however, speaking about a future beyond the year 2000. So, let me step back and leave you with ECnow.com's top 10 predictions for 2000. We will write about each trend during the months ahead. These predictions are also available here: http://ecnow.com/top10trends2000.htm

 #10 - Expanded ECM Deployment: Brick-and-mortar companies will continue to deploy e-commerce efforts that integrate with their core business. After Y2K preparation and cleanup, e-commerce will hit the business world like a tidal wave. Year 2000 will see a significant increase in the number of traditional companies that extend their brands onto the Web and meld on and off-line marketing activities.

#09 - Executive Inability to Morph: The majority of Global 2000 corporations will recognize that e-commerce is a reality they must embrace, but the majority of top executives will be unable to "morph" their corporations into holistic Internet-enabled entities.

#08 - Customer-Centric Corporate Restructuring: For the Global 2000 companies that adapt and integrate the Internet into their businesses, a customer-centric view will start reshaping their culture and infrastructure.

#07 - Free Extends into B-to-B Space: "Free" continues as a B-to-C (business-to-consumer) e-commerce model and extends into the B-to-B (business-to-business) world.

#06 - Wireless Applications Become More Common: Wireless Internet access will have rapid adoption in the U.S., possibly catching up to Europe. Wireless technology will be incorporated into standard business operations, will be used to deliver in-store competitive pricing, and remote e-mail anywhere, contributing to a steep rise in online usage.

#05 - ASP's Capabilities Expand: ASP's (Application Service Providers) will continue to increase the quantity and quality of their customers and the robustness of their service offerings. The ASP model, as it becomes more pervasive, will lead to a dramatic change in how the software industry produces and distributes software.

#04 - Dynamic Pricing Reaches Most Industries: Dynamic pricing will extend into numerous industries via the name-your-own-price model (such as Priceline) and the Auction (such as Ebay) model.

#03 - Privacy Concerns Increase: Privacy concerns will increase in the U.S. as the public becomes more aware of how their Web site activity can be tracked, profiled, and merged with data collected from multiple off-line sources to reveal very "personal" information about themselves.

#02 - M&A Activity Escalates: Private, public, traditional and newly created corporate venture capital funds will increase the pace of mergers and acquisitions. We will continue to see the "dot.com's" snapping up physical real estate. In addition to technology and market share as reasons for acquisition, companies will be acquired for their employee base (technical and managerial).

#01 - B-to-B Growth Continues its Dramatic Pace: B-to-B growth will continue at it's dramatic 1999 pace, leading to more liquidity in the B-to-B exchanges and inter-organizational virtual enterprises. Part of this growth will stem from the B-to-B practitioners borrowing successful techniques already proven in the B-to-C marketplace.

#Bonus Trend - Electronic Wallet Acceptance: Major in-roads will be made in the acceptance of electronic wallets. Driven by the success (and partial frustration) of the 1999 Christmas shopping season, consumers will be looking for an easier, quicker shopping experience.


Let me leave you with a couple of my favorite quotes this month:

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


Source: Narry Singh, Partner, The McKenna Group


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


(J.G., Tracy, California USA)




I hope you enjoy this eZine.

See you in cyberspace,

Mitchell Levy

President, ECnow.com <http://ecnow.com>
Executive Producer, ECMgt.com <http://ECMgt.com>
Founder and Coordinator, SJSU-PD ECM Certificate Program <http://ecmtraining.com/sjsu>




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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)

  5. less than 10% will have really pledged their business model to the net

  6. 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


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


Source: Brad Peppard, Marketing Consultant


Source: Steve Broback, President, Thunder Lizard Productions


Source: Steve Larsen, Senior Vice President, Net Perceptions



Predictions From Our Readers

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. 

Selected Answers of the Month


  1. Consumer's confidence in buying online will continue to grow.  Despite the fact that credit card fraud online is not higher then credit card fraud in the physical world (according to a study by VISA it is 1% of all transactions), consumers in the 90's were still cautious about on-line purchases.  The same way telephone ordering became more common in the 90's, on-line purchasing for the average consumer will become more common in 2000.

  2. E-Commerce will become more internationally accepted.  While currently 85% of all websites are hosted in the US and 75% of e-commerce is conducted in America, particularly Europe is going to increase its involvement in e-commerce.  By 2003 about 50% of all on-line transactions will be conducted outside the United States.

  3. E-Commerce application vendors will continue to collaborate (through mergers and partnerships) to provide businesses with complete e-commerce solutions.  Business will no longer have to purchase elements of an e-commerce solution (sales, marketing, procurement, etc.) separately and go through the painful task of making it work together, start-to-end complete solutions will become the norm.  This will allow more small-to-medium size businesses without extensive IT resources to participate in e-commerce.

  4. Payment methods such as "Cybercash" will go away.  This ties into the previously made point on consumer confidence.  There is no need for these alternative methods of payment as consumers trust to use their credit cards over the web.  Credit Card companies will increase fraud protection, thereby eliminating the need for payment methods with increased protections such as Cybercash.

(T.S., Santa Cruz, California, USA)


  1. I predict (brow furrowed, fingers at the temple) that some nationwide retailers, both broadly and narrowly focused, will learn to do it right on the web.

  2. I also predict that that some large retailers who cannot figure it out will have some spectacular and costly failures - BN for example.

(M.P., San Jose, California, USA)


  1. XML everywhere!

  2. Applications Servers morph form pluming to Specialized Java Enterprise Edition/XML etc servers. i.e. the emergence of the application server farm concept

  3. Wireless transactions

(D.S., Pleasanton, California, USA)


(J.G., Tracy, California USA)


  1. E-Commerce will also take a place in the developing world

  2. The issue of banking transactions will be the hot issue

  3. Import / Export debate on the net will be the hot issue in 2000

  4. Academically it will become significant and will take a place in career choosing



  1. B-to-B-commerce continues to expand

  2. It will become clear that E-commerce will be dominated by 'old' major player's – especially in manufacturing, for instance Fords & GMs new purchasing portals and SAPs mySAP portal - and that 'new' player's - like eBay and eLoan - will disappear

  3. Digital TV will have defining impact on retail eCommerce - as banks, supermarkets, travel bureaus will prefer this distribution channel due to user-friendliness and limited competition - this is especially happening in UK and France

(S.L., Copenhagen, DENMARK)


(P.S., St. Paul, Minneapolis, USA)


  1. Proliferation on use of e-commerce applications such as B2C and B-to-B (in Singapore).

  2. For countries outside Singapore, unless there is government support in similar Electronic Transaction Act or Bill as in Singapore, B-to-B will not see an immediate surge compared to Singapore.

  3. The refinement of present legal bills guiding the use of e-commerce.

  4. Greater commercialization and software war among e-commerce software developers.



  1. Increasing credit card payment

  2. Personalized e-mail marketing

(R.H., Bochum, GERMANY)


  1. Open Source in e-commerce

  2. Partially solving the bandwidth problem, merge of new hardware for Internet access: cellular phone, pager etc

  3. More sophisticated customer oriented sites

(Source: S.W., Sunnyvale, California, USA)


  1. People will become more comfortable with sending proprietary information on-line

  2. People will not be able to disconnect because of the introduction of smaller and smaller office tools (phones, Palm Pilots, other unknowns)

  3. There will be shopping kiosks located in bus stations, train depots and airports. These kiosks will house subscriber sites and pertain to specific audiences. What better way to spend a lay over in an airport!!!

(S.C., San Jose, California, USA)


  1. You will see widespread behavioral shifts on the B-to-B e-commerce side. Because of the efficiencies within B-to-B e-commerce, you will see more and more activity (read: liquidity) on B-to-B exchanges and auctions. 

  2. Net market makers with requisite and appropriate vertical expertise will see an increase in activity as we approach the inflection point of B-to-B e-commerce adoption which will occur in 2000.

  3. The inflection point will occur next year because of the increased enabling infrastructure and the adoption of the Internet as a more efficient business tool. Once this inflection point is reached, the successful exchanges/platforms will see a period of hyper-growth in their space. In our business, we have already seen this behavioral shift as we watch traders move their long-term commodity contracts into forwards within the CheMatch.com spot market exchange.

(T.F., Stamford, CT, USA)


  1. The next e-commerce trend will center on non-web centric approaches to e-commerce. As Internet and web commerce matures, a demographic and marketing shift will occur. Internet "pioneers", the first to work and shop the web, will be followed by less technically oriented "settlers". The next wave of e-commerce solutions will need to cater to this more traditional audience – people with disposable income and no particular interest in technology. They will demand a more convenient and orderly way to shop electronically, free from the frenzy of an overcrowded "dot com" marketplace. E-commerce will evolve to include a mix of old and new media technologies. New digital channels and more refined marketing tools will emerge to facilitate successful selling in the virtual world.

  2. Let's face it.  We're all feeling a little overwhelmed by dot.com mania and all the "Yahoo and Amazon want-a-bees."  There will be a shakedown in cyberspace.  Not every digital "Tom, Dick and Harry" have the marketing budgets to support the advertising needed to raise awareness and drive traffic to a site... The one constant in the swirl of real and virtual boomtowns is that they never survive.  They either go bust or they become normal, sane an orderly hometowns.  I sense that the Internet phenomenon is fast approaching the end of its boomtown days. And that will have a dramatic impact on not just current marketing but on the long-term brand proposition of Web-based businesses."

(P.H., Napa Valley, California, USA)


(J.E., Dallas, Texas, USA)


(HR, Lake Ariel, Pa. Wayne co., USA)


  1. On-line financial management/banking will become more important

  2. Digital cash will start to make some noise

  3. Amazon will splinter into smaller entities in an attempt to become profitable (ie., control expenses)

(R.R, Mountain View, California USA)


  1. Supply chain management will progress to the point where all interaction with customers can be done electronically.

  2. The lack of bandwidth will be addressed by network providers in an effort to provide quality of service to customers.

(M.S., Johannesburg, SOUTH AFRICA)


(S.Y., Santa Clara, California, USA)


(A.S., St. Louis, Missouri, USA)


  1. Consolidation / Acquisitions of heavily traveled sites by larger sites and media companies

  2. The start of a new kind of money. Electronic dead presidents (dollars) from 3rd party organizations

  3. Much tighter integration with back office systems. The companies that survive will be those that provide complete logistic solutions such as order tracking.

(G.T., San Carlos, California, USA)


  1. Use of portal technology

  2. Customer service

  3. Enhanced profiling

  4. Security

(C.S., San Jose, California, USA)


  1. The growing of e-business, not only e-commerce. I mean companies will be implementing a lot of extranets for purchasing, like a business chain.

  2. The changing of the e-consumer behavior

  3. The new dimension of the wired workforce

  4. Use of business intelligence implementations

(C.L., São Paulo, BRAZIL)


  1. B-to-B will continue to be the most fertile ground for e-commerce growth.

  2. Dot.coms will seek to expand their brands via relationships with more traditional retailers.

  3. Investors will begin to punish dot.coms who are not making significant inroads toward profitability.

  4. Competition will continue to be fierce, with the battle ground being site functionality, price, service, and fulfillment.

(M.S., Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA)


(R.K., Chicago, Illinois, USA)




  1. Healthcare will "become" involved

  2. Business to Business e-commerce will grow substantially

(S.C., San Jose, California, USA)


There will be several new uses of the Internet that most of us will look at and say "oh yeah, I thought about that but didn't really have the time to get involved with it".

  1.  Biz to Biz...As E-Commerce gets fine-tuned the "business to business" side of things will move from bulk transfers of virtual stuff to more partnering and integration across organizational lines. This will be a natural and relatively predictable transition. Funded by the stakeholders, it will not require an "acceptance quota" to the same degree as the retail side does.

  2. To me for me...In 2000 I see the focus on appliance and convenience increasing as the Internet becomes a means to achieve leisure time and convenience. The best example may be the on-line grocery store. Once they figure out how much more expedient and cost effective it would be to have the groceries waiting in front of the store rather than delivered to your house, there will be a whole new adventure. Imagine pulling up to a strip mall and not having to park! Just go to the drive through E-Com site and load up the purchases you ordered on-line before you left the office. A dozen eggs, 16" X 20" filters for the furnace, a box of crayons, and a choke collar (now, now it's for the dog). Make that a one-stop deal and people will pay for it. This type of example is becoming more obvious and will most likely drive some type of consolidation or partnering among retailers to invent a new shopping experience.

  3. From the applications side I see a web-based customer profiling system for repeat customers to expedite ordering and increase familiarity.

(B.D., Maryland, USA)


(R.R., Santa Clara, California, USA)




  1. Top trends will be in advertising.

  2. Insurance policies and flight tickets will be sold more often via Internet.

(Source: EU Department, The Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, TURKEY)


  1. B-to-B e-commerce continues to steal the spotlight on B-to-C e-commerce. 

  2. In order to capture major players within vertical industries B-to-B e-commerce solutions will have to evolve from a typical open auction/ exchange platform to a trading place with more options for how one buys and sells on a system. 

  3. Financial B-to-B is the e-commerce industry with most innovation and growth.

  4. An increased speed in the flow of data for e-commerce thanks to gains in XML technology.  Eventually leading to bi-directional transfer of data, meaning moving data from its legacy (corporate database) to another source (hand held device) where it is manipulated, and then it can be put back into the original database, rather than just a one way data dump.

(Source: I.B., Herndon, Virginia, U.S.A.)


  1. Forget e-commerce! … you need e-business. E-Commerce evokes the notion of buying and selling. But your business is more than that. It is marketing and advertising. It is human resources. It is planning and strategy. It is accounting and administration.

  2. Keep Your Eye On XML and PHP - EDI is not dead and gone….it has just assumed a new set of letters: XML. One of the best sources of XML information: www.oasis-open.org/cover

  3. PHP/FI will soon to be as big as Active Server Pages. PHP is one more way to customize your message to the particular person visiting.

  4. Watch As Colleges and Universities Begin to Offer E-Business Degrees. Only those graduates educated and equipped to deal with lightning fast change as the norm are going to succeed.

(F.S., Scranton, Pennsylvania, USA)


  1. Getting past Y2K!

  2. Widespread adoption of Internet technology in corporate purchasing departments

  3. Consolidation of numerous B-to-C companies

  4. New technologies in the realm of virtual shopping (virtual tours, virtual fitting, etc.)

(Source: J.S., Sunnyvale, California, USA)


(P.M., Mumbai, Maharastra, INDIA)


(G.D., Vancouver, CANADA)


(A.S., Herndon, Virginia, USA)




This section sponsored by - ECnow.com, please visit them at http://www.ecnow.com


10 Trends 2000
The coming year will see not only an increase in the number of offline companies that are developing Web presences, but also a rise in the number of Web-based companies that purchase, merge, and partner with brick-and-mortar businesses.

 Academia and Industry Move to Bolster E-Commerce
While market watchers and industry analysts monitor the day-to-day progress -- or lack of progress -- in online holiday sales, powerful sources from the world of academia and industry have announced moves to bolster the position of e-commerce.

 E-Commerce For Everyone
The emergence of Kmart and Wal-Mart in the e-commerce movement is symbolic of middle America's inevitable transition to online consumerism.

One-Quarter of Attempted Holiday E-Commerce Purchases Fail
One quarter of attempted holiday purchases over the Internet typically end without a sale being made, according to a study by Andersen Consulting.

Sites take on features of offline malls
Struggling to stand out on the increasingly crowded Web, small e-tailers are finding strength in numbers.

Is There A Future For Free Shipping?
Many shoppers would rather trudge to the mall than pay shipping fees, and several e-commerce retailers are trying to accommodate consumers by experimenting with free shipping promotions.

 Net firms consider trade instead of cash
The new thing in e-commerce may be to let firms do business the old-fashioned way--by trading without money.

 E-Business Must Consider Its Customer
One of the biggest causes of e-business failures is the inability of companies to build a system from the customer's viewpoint.

Bloomingdale's Installs E-Commerce Kiosks
For shoppers who are weary of struggling through crowds and waiting in lines to make purchases, but lack home Internet access, new e-commerce kiosks in stores make it easier to browse and buy.

Why Is Circuit City Scared Of E-Commerce?
If the negative things that Circuit City Stores, Inc. has been saying about e-tailers are any indication, the giant brick-and-mortar electronics chain must really be feeling the pressure from online merchants this holiday season.

A Crystal Clear Web Lesson
An enterprising 11-year-old shows the venerable Waterford Crystal company that its potential customers aren't ignoring the Net, even if it is.

Preferences or Privacy?
If consumers and Internet businesses can agree, personalized content could improve the online experience

Are E-tailers Ignoring The Bottom Line?
In the mad scramble to be the flashiest, biggest, and most dynamic Web site in cyberspace, many retailers are losing sight of the most important prize -- the bottom line.

Will Shopping Agents Trigger Price Wars?  
You know the price wars that occasionally break out between gas station owners on opposite corners of an intersection? Well, the same type of price wars may break out on the Internet because of product comparison Web sites and attendant shopping "bots."




Amazon, Sprint offer shopping on web phones
Online retailer Amazon.com and wireless telephone company Sprint PCS Group said on Wednesday they are offering online shopping at Amazon.com from Internet-ready Sprint PCS phones.

 'Secure Assure' Looks to Challenge TRUSTe as Leading Privacy Seal
The start-up seal program, launched last month, hopes to emerge as the true Web privacy seal by putting consumers' interests ahead of corporate prerogatives.

Amazon.com Dons Diamonds, Pearls
E-tail leader Amazon.com Wednesday added luxury goods to its ever-expanding list of online offerings through a $10 million deal with Ashford.com.

Holiday E-Shopping Shuffle
Online shopping portals add bells and whistles this holiday season.

New standards could help development of micropayments
A new standard for conducting nickel-and-dime e-commerce transactions is nearing completion, but it may arrive too late to resuscitate the concept.

Pass the Internet Remote
A new device promises to make Web surfing as easy as channel surfing. Will it catch on where others haven't?




Wells Fargo service to make online ordering easier
Wells Fargo & Co. said on Monday it planned to offer a "digital wallet" that will let customers avoid filling out order forms at thousands of retailers when shopping online.

Canadian Firm Unveils Insurance For E-Shoppers
$ECURE-IT-e, a new service that promises to to secure credit card transactions made over the Internet, added a new wrinkle to the e-holiday shopping season by launching its Web site earlier this week.

Juno Offers E-Mail Users Free Web Access
Millions of users of Juno Online Services' free e-mail service now are being offered free Net access. What's the catch? Ads.

Shopping by Bar Code
BarPoint.com on Monday launched a Web site that allows consumers to compare the prices of goods and call up a host of information using a product's bar code.

DHL to unveil system to calculate tariff, duty fees
DHL Airways is offering a way for companies to log onto its Web site to learn what tariffs, taxes or duties a foreign government may charge before it ships goods internationally.

Startup Takes Outsourcing to New Levels
Escalate, an 11-month-old "white box" e-commerce firm led by startup artist Keng Lee, unveils list of customers.

When Shopping Bots Go Bad
Our test finds major comparison shopping engines get it wrong.

eWonders.com Launches E-Shopping Guide
Does the online world need yet another guide to online shopping? eWonders.com Inc. thinks so, and has launched as a comprehensive e-shopping guide "to assist online shoppers who are frustrated and confused by the number of merchants and amount of product information on the Internet."

Barnesandnoble delivers -- by bicycle?
Attempting to get a leg up on Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble is experimenting with same-day delivery of book orders.



Coupon Clickers Storm the Web
About 30% of Netizens are using online coupons, up from 23% six months ago, according to NPD Online Research.

Pricing Errors on the Web Can Be Costly
When traditional retailers put the wrong price on an item, they might have to apologize to a customer. On the Internet, they have to either lose face or part with a lot of money.

E-Business Gets Personal
There is another buzzword rattling throughout the e-commerce industry: "Personalization." More than ever, companies are responding to research data showing that customers want e-commerce tools with a personal touch.

Online shoppers trust offline brands
Online shoppers are heading to stores they know and trust -- and with so many first-time shoppers online, those stores are the same ones they shop at offline.

The best and worst times to ask e-shoppers for info
A new survey of 500 online adults by New York-based marketing company Cyber Dialogue suggests that cybershoppers don't mind getting asked personal questions -- but timing is key.

Report: Brand Not Driving Young Online Consumers
The new Technographics Report from Forrester Research says that young consumers' preferences for leading brands don't correlate with traffic to these companies' Web sites.

E-tailers scramble to win teen buyers
Online merchants want to discover the secrets of youth--at least those secrets that will help them sell more goods to teen-agers.

E-tailers learn a lesson -- the hard way
Shoppers discover loopholes allowing them to electronically pass discounts along to friends, family. Oops!

SurferGurlz Rule Christmas E-Commerce
Just as in brick-and-mortar shopping, women are quickly becoming a major force in e-commerce.

Online Gift Certificates
At least a half-dozen Web-based ventures have rolled out in time for the holiday shopping season whose sole purpose is to sell gift certificates. Internet retailers are hastening to offer their own certificates.





'Twas the Nightmare Before E-Christmas
The snafus at popular e-commerce sites are starting to pile up. And, as predicted by channel executives and other observers, many of them experienced during the online shopping season center around logistics.

Company Vows Next Day Delivery -- Really
DeliveryNextDay.com is an Internet business-to-business express fulfillment system that lets companies sell products online 24 hours a day.

Toys "R" Us falling short on Christmas deliveries
Toys "R" Us, the biggest U.S. toy chain, is telling some Internet customers that it can't deliver their purchases in time for Christmas even though they ordered before the retailer's Dec. 10 deadline.

Holiday E-Commerce: More Shoppers, More Spending, More Problems
E-tailing executives say Santa is bringing loads of orders this year, according to IDC, but a number of surveys suggest he should add better return policies and site performance to his sleigh.

Costco goes shopping online
Costco Wholesale , the No. 1 U.S. warehouse-club store chain, knows when a deal is too good to pass up and that's why its buying merchandise from Internet retailers.

E-tailers Reaping Benefits Of Instant Credit
A growing number of online businesses are now doubling as finance companies for their customers, and are realizing some surprising profits.

Reach Out And Touch Someone
We've all heard the virtues of running a pure-play Internet business: e.g., low overhead, inexpensive real estate, improved inventory management, and the potential for "zero-gravity" commerce. But unless your entire product or service line can be shipped as bits, you had better think long and hard about your offline strategy.

Fingerhut calls on all employees to help ship orders
Online orders at direct marketer Fingerhut are so brisk this holiday season that the company has enlisted the help of its employees--including its chief executive--to ship orders, a spokesman today.

Online Procurement: Killer App for Small Businesses
Targeting small businesses to sell them everything from copier paper to 401k plans online are a number of young companies flush with venture capital.

Many Happy Returns?
When it comes to online shopping this holiday season, it's not really the thought that counts. It's the fine print in the company's return policy

Free shipping draws online shoppers
Online merchants are willing to make sacrifices this holiday season and are betting that waiving shipping costs will win over shoppers.

Ashford delivering for free during holiday squeeze
While some Internet companies are already hinting they won't be able to ship goods in time for Christmas, Ashford.com is promising to deliver on every order it receives up until Dec. 23.





Victims of Their Own Success
Some AOL community leaders are learning that an area's popularity can lead to commercial opportunity -- but not for them.

Ziff-Davis sells Publishing Arm
Ziff-Davis, trying to reduce its debt and streamline its assets, today sold its publishing unit, including notable magazines such as PC Magazine, PC Week and PC Computing, to Willis Stein & Partners for an estimated $780 million in cash.

Net merchants close in on local advertising
Online merchants increasingly will forsake national advertising for targeted local campaigns, according to a new study

Flycast Introduces Lower-Cost Ad Network 
Flycast, an online advertising and marketing company based in San Francisco, today introduced an online advertising network that it said should help media sites that haven't typically earned revenue from advertising.

Netscape Directory Making a Splash 
Netscape's volunteer-based Open Directory Project, once ignored by bigger players as a do-it-yourself Web directory, is drawing attention and criticism as it has become the Web's fastest-growing site list.




Is 2000 The Year of International E-Commerce?
When the World Trade Organization WTOgave e-commerce it's blessing by extending the moratorium on Internet taxes, it may have signaled the next big step in online consumer spending.

Europe Closing E-Commerce Gap With U.S. 
According to a report released today by Forrester Research, Europe's Internet commerce will grow by more than 100 percent per year for the next five years and will reach annual online trade of 1.6 trillion Euros by 2004.

Net Retailers Face A Taxing Question
Are online stores obligated to charge sales tax on purchases? It depends on who you ask.

Making E-Contracts Count
In the first legislation of its kind in Canada, and probably North America, a legal framework for e-commerce is proposed that would give online transactions and contracts the same legal protections as those on paper.

E-Commerce Now A Top Presidential Campaign Issue
As the five front-running candidates for the U.S. presidency shift their campaigns into high gear, electronic commerce is joining education and campaign finance reform among the more popular topics of debate.

Survey: UK Online Retailers Disappoint Customers
Online Christmas shoppers may be shocked to find that some of the biggest Internet retailers are failing their customers in the festive period, according to research from marketing consultants Dial Internet on Wednesday.

International Group Plans Rules for Consumers Online
An international council on Thursday is expected to adopt a set of guidelines that tries to put in place the first global framework of consumer protections for the Internet.

Online Pizza in the U.K. 
Domino's Pizza U.K., an independent franchise of the No. 2 American pizza chain, is set to launch a British online delivery service next week, for the "significant number of PC users who are also pizza eaters."

International body adopts e-commerce protections
In the midst of the holiday shopping season, a forum of 29 nations today adopted guidelines they hope will provide broader protections for online consumers, from settling complaints over faulty products to curbing e-commerce fraud.

'Locusts' Infesting E-Commerce
International online law enforcers warned Tuesday they were seriously behind in tackling Internet crime, and said cybercrime might prove a major threat to countries as well as businesses.

E-Commerce Tax Plan Summaries
About thirty plans for changing the country’s systems of state and local tax have been submitted to the Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce. This document contains brief summaries of most of the plans.

Europe Offers Special Challenges for Net Retailers
Across Europe, retailers are hoping that this will be a breakthrough period for electronic commerce. But merchants in Europe have already found that varied laws, languages and customs are posing challenges that their American counterparts have largely not had to face.

WTO agreed on short-term Net tax ban, U.S. official says
World Trade Organization ministers are in agreement that the current tax moratorium on sales over the Internet should be extended for as long as two years, U.S. Commerce Secretary William Daley said.





Man of the Year: Jeff Bezos
Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos, the young entrepreneur whose vision of a giant Internet bookstore helped pioneer the global online shopping revolution, was named on Sunday as Time magazine's Man of the Year.

Clinton the E-Commerce Newbie
The leader of the free world makes his first online purchases: books and bracelets for Christmas gifts. On-time delivery to the White House probably won't be a problem.

Hall Of Fame Sports Heroes Join E-Commerce Game
Former NFL, NBA and NHL greats John Elway, Michael Jordan and Wayne Gretzky have announced that they will attempt to muscle into the competitive online sporting goods market by launching MVP.com next month.

FreeDotNet Founders Resign On Fraud Charges
FreeDotNet, a British Internet service provider, lost three of its founding members Friday after being charged with conspiracy to defraud investors.

Microsoft CFO Quits
Greg Maffei is leaving the software giant to become CEO of a fiber-optic network firm. He will be replaced by John Connors, VP of Microsoft's worldwide enterprise group.  

Will BizRate's Davis Play in Traffic? 
Just as some online merchants have developed a newfound fondness for shop bots, Chuck Davis, president of Disney's Go Network, has found affection in his heart for the automated crawlers - especially when he learned he could run one.

Stamps.com Founders Find the Outbox
After seeing their idea for Internet postage become a federally-approved, $2.5 billion business in just over three years, the founders of Stamps.com are leaving for greener pastures.

The New Face of AT&T
Much of the top management talent at AT&T is leaving the company when the wireless group is spun off in an IPO.

Meeker Inherits the Rumors 

Rumors of famed Internet investor's Mary Meeker's move to the Left Coast are just that -- rumors. Morgan Stanley said it's not losing one of its best-known analysts, despite press reports.

Getting the Inside Dope

Magazine veterans Kurt Andersen and Michael Hirschorn have teamed up to form a news site. They've got cash, ambition -- and plenty of buzz.

Restarting at NetZero

With a new captain at the helm and plenty of IPO cash, the company hopes to become the America Online of free ISPs.

Value America's Palace Coup

First the CEO quit. Then the board deposed its chairman. Now the general merchandise e-retailer thinks it can turn a profit.

The Prophet of the Silicon Prairie

Flip Filipowski is determined to lead -- or drag -- his hometown of Chicago into the tech future.

Koenig Joins Epinions.com Board
Bradford C. Koenig, the influential co-head of Goldman's global high technology group, is taking a director's chair at startup Epinions.com.




Way Cleared for E-Trade-Telebanc Merger

The U.S. Office of Thrift Supervision describes E-Trade's application to acquire Telebanc as "complete."

Retailers, Web companies pick partners
Wal-Mart is linking with America Online and Best Buy is teaming up with Microsoft, the latest in a spate of alliances between giant Internet companies and retail chains that are looking for new ways expand their reach on and off the Web.

AOL to Buy MapQuest.com for $1.1 Billion 
AOL will combine MapQuest's navigation capabilities with its Digital City content network and MovieFone movie ticketing service.  

After the USWeb Merger 

This week's $5.9 billion acquisition of USWeb/CKS by Whittman-Hart creates a homegrown behemoth in the Internet business-consulting sector. So why doesn't Wall Street like it?

Oxygen Media Flashes the Cash

Billionaire French luxury goods tycoon Bernard Arnault snapped up a $122 million minority stake in women-oriented Oxygen Media.

Retailers, Net Firms Do The 'Click-And-Mortar' Two-Step 

Three Internet superpowers went looking for new customers among the aisles of brick-and-mortar giants. By week's end, they joined forces with some of the mightiest offline retailers in a string of alliances that could reshape the Internet economy.

Attention, Shoppers: Kmart Turns On Blue Light
Kmart stormed the Web world today with a wide-ranging partnership with Internet heavyweights Softbank, Yahoo and others that will give the retailer's millions of customers free Internet access and the opportunity to buy its products online.

CMGI Buys Yesmail.com 

CMGI agreed to acquire direct e-mail marketing firm Yesmail.com today for about $520 million in stock. And it wants to acquire your e-mail address, too.

Driveway to Link With Microsoft Office
Driveway, one of more than a dozen services offering Web-based file storage, is expected to announce today that its service will be integrated into Microsoft's Office 2000 and Internet Explorer, a move that could give it a strong leg up over its rivals.

Death of the Free? 

When Free PC was acquired by Emachines this week, many were quick to sound the death knell of one of the splashier business models to come along on the Web - giving stuff away for free.

Ashford and Amazon Strike $10 Million Deal

In a move that helps secure Ashford.com's position in the cutthroat market for luxury goods sold online, the company sold a 16 percent stake to Amazon.com in return for $10 million and marketing commitments, the companies said today.

DoubleClick Opts to Buy Opt-In Email.com
Online ad giant DoubleClick today acquired Opt-In Email.com, a Colorado firm that makes Internet e-mail marketing, publishing and list management tools for about $16 million.



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Top Signs You've Been Out of College Too Long

  1. Your potted plants stay alive.
  2. You keep more food than beer in the fridge.
  3. 6:00 AM is when you get up, not when you go to sleep (Executive Producer not included)
  4. You carry an umbrella. You watch the Weather Channel.
  5. Your friends marry and divorce instead of hook-up and break-up.
  6. You go from 130 days of vacation time to 7.
  7. Older relatives feel comfortable telling dirty jokes around you.
  8. Your car insurance goes down and your car payments go up.
  9. You actually eat breakfast foods at breakfast time.
  10. Over 90% of the time you spend in front of a computer is for real work.

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