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A model of B2B e-commerce, based on connectivity and purpose

By Margaret Webster and Andrea J. Cullen


NoPurpose - To present a complete and comprehensive model by which business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce transactions for sales and purchases between organisations may be categorised. Design/methodology/approach - Literature from the e-commerce and operations management fields was studied, and the findings were synthesised to develop a preliminary conceptual model of B2B interaction. The conceptual model was tested empirically using a qualitative research procedure involving focus groups. From this, its structure and content were validated and refined. Findings - The research found that the developed model, incorporating nine exclusive e-commerce trading scenarios, covers all B2B selling and purchase transactions, which suggests that it is comprehensive. It further found that trading occurs in each of the nine scenarios within the model, thus suggesting that it is complete. These findings support the conclusion that the model represents a valid taxonomy for the classification of B2B e-commerce transactions. Research limitations/implications - Although the literature findings are international, the empirical study was restricted to the UK. The model has been validated through this research, and now provides a framework by which the mechanisms of B2B trade may be further investigated. Practical implications - The model allows commercial organisations and researchers to recognise and understand the complexity and multiple dimensions of e-commerce use for B2B sales and purchases. It provides a framework onto which individual trading scenarios may be mapped. The framework offers guidance to operations and supply chain managers in organisations as to the most appropriate approach to adopt in particular e-commerce implementation projects and supply chain transactions. Originality/value - This paper furthers knowledge in the areas of e-commerce and operations management by proposing a new model of B2B interaction. This provides a comprehensive means of classifying all available transaction types, the characteristics of these and the likely technology used within them. It offers the ability, systematically, to identify, map and understand all available B2B e-commerce trading mechanisms

Topics: Supply chain management, Focus groups, Electronic commerce, Buyer-seller relationships
Year: 2007
OAI identifier:
Provided by: Bradford Scholars
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