The Diffusion of Web-based Shopping Systems as a New Business Enabler

C. Kim (Korea) and R.D. Galliers (UK)

Keywords

Electronic Commerce, WebBased Shopping Systems (WBSS), ICT Diffusion.

Abstract

Web-Based Shopping Systems (WBSS) are diffusing very rapidly across the global electronic commerce environment. WBSS are Internet-based shopping systems for selling and buying products, information and services. WBSS enable a company to do business that it might not otherwise be able to do, as is the case with Amazon.com. Research relevant to the Web-based shopping tends to either overestimate or underrate the role of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). There is both technological skepticism within the social science circles and technical optimism within the engineering and computing field. Each perspective seems to have a limitation in adequately explaining the phenomenon of WBSS diffusion. Therefore, we wish to explore major characteristics of WBSS as enablers of new business, concerning both the technical and business aspects in contemporary web-based shopping business settings. On this basis, the paper presents five salient characteristics on the technical perspective and four special characteristics on the business perspective, addressing a configuration model of WBSS applications. It is our hope that both technical perspective and business perspective for exploring WBSS's characteristics presented in this paper can be an initial step towards a more balanced debate of ICT role, for web-based shopping business and electronic commerce generally.

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