Different models for E-retailing

By Priya Chetty on June 6, 2012

The major underlying reasons behind the success of electronic retailing (e-retailing) is that the technology convergence that offers better experience to consumers, enabling them to shop products from anywhere and at any time at a cost effective manner. There are several models of e-retailing that a business can select from to suit its needs (Botha, Bothma and Geldenhuys, 2008). E-retailing can be achieved with the help of the following two types of systems (Gilbert, 2003):

Interactive systems in e-retailing

This kind of e-retailing system permits two way interactions and consists of promotional touch screen booths or internet and kiosks for components such as holiday or airline bookings. Some systems can describe the product in use. In case of touch screens systems, they permit further inquiries or give printouts from the database. A feature of both systems is that a credit card can be used in order to protect the sale.

Passive systems in e-retailing

These are non interactive one way media, where the retailer can decide upon the timing and content of messages. They include entire one way communication media forms such as clubs on television, shopping pages or one way cable systems. The form of selling using passive systems consists of electronic media or video catalogs which describe the product in use or offers further information.

Technology today has seen a wide development so as to facilitate the electronic retailing function properly for both online businesses and consumers (Sople, 2009). The electronic retailer, in order to make the retailing process a success has to make several decisions regarding how online business will function. However, all decision must be taken over and against the principles guiding direct marketing.


  • Sople V V (2009), Logistics Management, Pearson Education, New Delhi.
  • Gilbert D (2003), Retail Marketing Management, Pearson Education, New Delhi, p 354.
  • Botha J, Bothma B C and Geldenhuys P (2008), Managing E-Commerce in Business, Juta & company limited, South Africa, p 274.

Priya is the co-founder and Managing Partner of Project Guru, a research and analytics firm based in Gurgaon. She is responsible for the human resource planning and operations functions. Her expertise in analytics has been used in a number of service-based industries like education and financial services.

Her foundational educational is from St. Xaviers High School (Mumbai). She also holds MBA degree in Marketing and Finance from the Indian Institute of Planning and Management, Delhi (2008).

Some of the notable projects she has worked on include:

  • Using systems thinking to improve sustainability in operations: A study carried out in Malaysia in partnership with Universiti Kuala Lumpur.
  • Assessing customer satisfaction with in-house doctors of Jiva Ayurveda (a project executed for the company)
  • Predicting the potential impact of green hydrogen microgirds (A project executed for the Government of South Africa)

She is a key contributor to the in-house research platform Knowledge Tank.

She currently holds over 300 citations from her contributions to the platform.

She has also been a guest speaker at various institutes such as JIMS (Delhi), BPIT (Delhi), and SVU (Tirupati).