Common Types of E-commerce – A Complete Guide with Examples

    The most commonly used Types of e-commerce are: B2B business-to-business, B2C business-to-consumer, C2C consumer-to-consumer, D2C direct-to-consumer, and C2B consumer-to-business. Other types of e-commerce like B2A business to administration or B2G business to government, and C2A consumer to administration are rare, like above.

    In the US, 14% of retail sales occurred in 2020 through e-commerce, and the experts confirmed the report that stated the sales are predicted to be 22% by 2025. Amazon and eBay are the most visited sites in North America. People of the US also shopped at Walmart and Costco. Other retailers have developed multiple online stores after the increasing sales ratio through e-commerce.

    E-commerce is a business model structure that allows businesses and customers to buy and sell their goods and services with the help of the internet worldwide. E-commerce made reaching a wide range of people easy by letting them know about new product launches and the services the business provides. 

    Types of e-commerce with examples

    According to the complete consideration of different products, services, and businesses, the e-commerce model is divided into different types to make it easy and quick to make a new startup succeed. Types of e-commerce are explained in detail with examples.

    1. B2B business to business
    2. B2C business to consumer
    3. C2C consumer to consumer
    4. D2C direct to consumer
    5. B2B business to business

    1. B2B business to business

    B2B is a business that offers goods or services to another business. Companies conduct B2B transactions with wholesalers and online retailers. In B2B, a business manufactures softwares, products, and services and sells them to another business that can use them as raw materials. 

    One company purchases raw materials from another to utilize in manufacturing. A company that manufactures and sells automobile parts is also considered a B2B. Business customers in the B2B market can be producers, resellers, governments, and institutions.

    Example of B2B companies

    • Microsoft.
    • Salesforce.
    • Slack.
    • Cisco.
    • Qualtrics.
    • FedEx.
    • DocuSign.

    2. B2C Business to consumer

    B2C business-to-consumer e-commerce is retail e-Commerce, a business model involving sales between online businesses and consumers. Business-to-consumer companies sell products directly to consumers.B2C is a trade of goods and services through the internet between online marketplaces and individual consumers.

    A B2C company performs transactions with the consumer that will ultimately use the good. It is the most common business model and is likely the concept most people think about when they hear about e-commerce. What you buy online, such as groceries, clothing products, electronics, cosmetics, etc., is a B2C transaction.

    Examples of B2C companies

    • Amazon
    • Meta (formerly Facebook)
    • Walmart
    • Shein. 
    • Speechify.
    • Swappie
    • Bizzit

    3. C2C consumer to consumer

    C2C fosters business between private individuals. The transactions between consumers are usually in an online environment. C2C companies are intermediaries to foster engagement and help consumers reach bigger audiences. Established companies entities that sell products. Craigslist, Walmart, Alibaba, and eBay pioneered this standard in the early days of the internet.

    C2C eCommerce platforms empower consumers to buy and sell without the need for registered companies. E-business platforms such as digital marketplaces connect consumers with others who can list their products and manage sales. C2C businesses benefit from self-propelled evolution by motivated buyers and sellers but face a key challenge in quality control and technology maintenance. 

    Examples of C2C companies

    • eBay
    • Etsy
    • Craigslist
    • Ali Express
    • Amazon Marketplace
    • Venmo
    • Paypal
    • Zelle

    4. D2C direct to consumer

    D2C e-commerce is the manufacturer or producer selling its products directly to the consumers from their online store. The cycle from the manufacturer or producers to wholesalers, distributors, retailers, and consumers is outside the D2C strategy.

    A direct-to-consumer business sells products directly to the end customers without the help of third-party wholesalers or online retailers. Instead of other business models, such as B2B2C, there is no intermediary between the consumer and the business. 

    Examples of D2C companies

    • Beltology
    • Bombas
    • Brilliant Earth
    • Devid kind
    • Mejuri
    • MVMT
    • American giant
    • AdoreMe

    5. C2B consumer to business

    Consumer-to-business, or C2B, is a type of e-commerce where a consumer provides a product or service to an association. C2B businesses generate value from their consumer base by crowdsourcing ideas and feedback. An example is a blogger or a photographer who offers stock images. 

    The consumer could also be a person participating in a survey site or directing someone through referral hiring sites like Upwork and Fiverr. C2B businesses focus on genuine connection and flexibility, including marketing, brand awareness, and market research.

    Examples of C2B companies

    • Google AdSense
    • Shutterstock 
    • Fiverr
    • Upwork
    • Freelancer


    B2B, B2C, C2C, and D2C are the most common types of e-commerce. E-commerce business models also have other types of e-commerce, including B2G business to government or B2A business to administration, and C2A consumer to administration. E-Commerce is not only an IT issue but a complete business undertaking. Companies use it as a reason for completely re-designing business processes to reap the greatest usefulness. Moreover, E-Commerce is a valuable technology that gives consumers access to businesses and companies worldwide.


    Q. What is the first e-commerce store?

    The first eCommerce company was Boston Computer Exchange, which in 1982. It was predominantly an online marketplace that offered services to people to sell their used computers.

    Q. What are the qualities of e-commerce?

    • Pervasiveness
    • Multinational reach
    • Versatile standards
    • Information richness
    • Interactivity
    • Information viscosity
    • Personalization
    • Social Technology

    Q. What are the benefits of the types of e-commerce?

    • Faster buying methodology
    • Stock and product listing creation
    • Cost reduction
    • Reasonable advertising and marketing
    • Flexibility for consumers
    • No reach limitation
    • Product and price comparison
    • Faster response to buyer/market demands

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