by admin on February 12, 2011
Pyxle’s MD Presantha Jayamaha in a column for the Daily Mirror writes about E-commerce and it’s potential for Sri Lanka. Below is a full excerpt, the article can also be read on the Daily Mirror Website.
A commonly heard term for most people these days is “e Commerce“; which is a broadly used term to describe any commercial interaction between people or companies on the internet.
Surprisingly this rather mundane term “E-commerce” has made a significant impact on society. Most people use e Commerce in their daily work routines without even knowing it! For example we use eCommerce when we access Online Banking for bank statements and pay bills, review and book Hotels that offer the best price or guest reviews, search and buy a gift online, submit personal details for a brand promotion, digitally personalize a dream car with paint and trim options, purchase tickets for the latest blockbuster, participate in an online auction or even when we buy or acquire music online. eCommerce is changing the face of retail, banking, branding, services and industry.
iTunes is a good example of the power of eCommerce and its benefits to the consumer. Previously good quality music could only be found on CD’s and Tapes that were expensive to own and usually hard to find. Next came the Napster revolution where music was pirated and exchanged freely on the internet; this soon led to objections from the music industry and also for virus prone files disguised as music files. iTunes thus presented the ultimate compromise where consumers can buy music in high quality and security for a nominal fee while the music owners have a secure income stream from their music. This eCommerce revolution made it possible for anyone from anywhere in the world to access millions of high quality songs without the need for a CD player or a high cost of acquisition; this was something that would have been improbable 10 years ago.
For something closer to home; It is now taken as a given that any respectable hotel has an online reservations system. International guests have been exposed and now expect the facility to view and book rooms, facilities and tours on the internet. Thus many hotels and smaller establishments are actively and rapidly placing themselves on the internet and selling their rooms and tours online. The beauty of eCommerce is that Shanika Beach Inn of Tangalle, a small 5 bed room motel, is now freely accessible for room bookings and reviews to anyone from New York to Kabul. However it is important to understand that as the tourism industry develops in Sri Lanka; it is imperative that Hotels develop a sustained online guest engagement plan that will grow and evolve with the expectations of international travellers.
From a business point of view the direct benefits of eCommerce is multidimensional. A direct connection between consumer and supplier is the best combination in terms of value for both parties. The eradication of other business layers and related taxes or expenses makes eCommerce very attractive in terms of savings to the supplier. Any business owner with an eCommerce sales channel will happily mention that online sale acquisitions are the cheapest and most profitable since it eradicates the need to have showrooms, displays, additional employees, middlemen, and also functions 24 hours non stop! This is the winning combination of reducing costs while also increasing sales.
In the next few articles I will be reviewing eCommerce on an Industry specific level and the perceived potential for Sri Lankan companies.
(Presantha Jayamaha is the Managing Director of Pyxle Ltd; a Web and Software applications development company based out of Sri Lanka. He has been active member of the IT industry for over 10 years with a special interest in Internet Applications. As the MD of Pyxle, he plays a key role in studying, understanding and applying the latest global IT innovation. He is passionate about the internet and what it can do for people and business. He is an old boy of RMIT University)