Have you ever bought or sold an item on eBay.com or craigslist.org? If so, you have participated in consumer-to-consumer (C2C) e-commerce. People who come together to buy, sell or trade items online take part in C2C e-commerce. This type of e-commerce is the modern version of using the classified advertising section of your local newspaper or going to an auction. C2C e-commerce is a convenient way for consumers to buy and sell goods without getting in their cars and driving to a store.
C2C e-commerce differs from a business-to-business model or a business-to-consumer model because consumers interact directly with each other. However, a business does operate the online platform on which C2C transactions take place. Typically, buyers can shop for free, but sellers sometimes have to pay a fee to list their products. Consumers often play an active role in monitoring e-commerce sites for scams and other inappropriate content.
The C2C model entails lower costs and higher profits for buyers and sellers. Sellers can store inventory in a home office, and it costs less to market and distribute products than in a traditional business-to-consumer model. Both new and used goods are sold through C2C e-commerce, and fewer middlemen are involved in the transactions. Advances in technology and ease of access to the Internet have also made it possible for a growing number of individuals to launch C2C e-commerce businesses.
Examples of C2C E-Commerce
Craigslist is one of the top websites in the world and the leading service for classified ads. Consumers can not only buy, sell and trade items, but also conduct other transactions such as housing and job searches. The site is very user-friendly, allowing consumers to register and list an item for sale within minutes. For consumers looking to make a purchase, they simply go to the ‘for sale’ category and choose the appropriate subcategory (e.g. computers, furniture, books, etc.).