Online communities are both diverse and similar just as traditional offline communities. However, they converse over a virtual spacebased on specific points of commonality. Online communities supportparticular subject, such as a product, brand, animal, idea, and so on. Based on this definition, it is clear that online communities are an important resource for online or offline enterprises seeking to obtain specific information about their businesses or industry (Moore, 2000). To delineate the role of the online community in research and marketing, the focus will be on BigCommerce Inc., a business to business (B2B) enterprise based in the U.S.
The Interrelationships between the Internet, Government, and Society
The government and society are highly complex social institutions that constantly interact. As such, they demonstrate the characteristics attributed to the groupings, such as the norms, roles, values, complexity and the ability to reproduce themselves. As a platform, the internet acts as a connection that links the two social institutions over a virtual space. In business, these interrelationships are particularly pronounced as enterprises seek to virtually maximize benefits for investors while the government performs checks and balances to ensure that the law, policy, and guidelines are being observed while also deriving other financial benefits through taxes and levies. The intricacies of these relationships are further examined through the lenses of an actual online enterprise that conducts its business solely over an online platform.
BigCimmerce is a leading technology-based vertical B2B company. The company develops innovative software that seamlessly integrates with any systems that clients might already have in place. Warner (2010) reported that the now major organization currently valued at more than half a billion dollars opened in 2009 and has approximately 500 employees in its U.S. and Australia offices. The platform provided by the enterprise is targeted to other B2Bs to efficiently and effectively enable them navigate the complex world of virtual business relationships. Through its innovative solutions, the company has been instrumental in enabling clients to translate inquiries into sales and in generating more profits.
Being a technology firm, BigCommerce is in the software development sub-category with the best return on investment (ROI) in the industry. B2B virtual marketplaces are usually grouped in accordance to the markets they serve, the products or services they offer, the geographical region in which they operate, the functionality of business processes, and nature of value added to the merchandise or services.
Type of Net Market Served
BigCommerce is a successful B2B e-marketplace, also referred to as a Net Market Makers (NMM). The firm is a third party providing the required infrastructure upon which retailers reach and supply their markets. Some of the top companies served by BigCommerce include Cargill, Georgian-Pacific, Restaurantware, Du-Pont, among many other Fortune 500 firms from around the globe.
Proposed advantages to Purchasers and Suppliers
As recommended by Myler (2017, par. 1), the company has adopted a specific strategy for growing the number of purchasers by focusing and mastering one vertical at a time. This approach is highly recommended for B2B marketplaces whose clientele is spread out over different vertical markets. Since BigCommerce specifically serves other B2B companies focus is on enabling both big and small companies adopt its e-commerce platform to reach wholesalers and large scale retailers on a secure and reliable platform that quickly adopts to whatever structure that a company currently employs.
The ability to succeed in a virtual marketplace depends on the company’s ability to attract a large number of sellers to To succeed in attracting and maintaining a large market, it is pertinent that the host provides an effective platform that seamlessly allows suppliers to offer their goods to the market. Value is further enhanced by enabling service providers to pool together and provide interrelated products or services.
The company collects a wide array of consumer behavior data that is invaluable to its suppliers. The information assists in attracting and retaining major suppliers on its platform. In addition, BigCommerce has a robust strategy of creating communities on its platform. Strategies for attaining this goal have included timely communication and information sharing, in chat rooms, bulletin boards, among other technical features that ease the process of sharing information.
Analysis of the Net Marketplace
Bias (Buyer versus Seller)
BigCommerce Company is essentially a neutral e-marketplace that does not favor either the buyers or the suppliers. As much as they are operated independently and not biased towards one type of user, third party ownership B2Bs must appreciate that suppliers are not willing to come on board unless they are assured of a vast marketplace. On the other hand, buyers maybe hesitate until they are guanteed that they can find the product that they require.
Ownership (Suppliers, Buyers, and Independents)
Initially, the NMM operates as an enterprise seeking to make profit by creating a virtual market place in marketing and technology. The net value proposition created by the NMM is intended to appeal to a large number of potential buyers and sellers (Phillips & Meeker, 2000). While other forms do exist, the NMM off I its value proposition within a vertical market that is narrowed down to the marker is the most prevalent. By providing the common ground, buyers are assured that they will find what they need on the site while sellers are assured of obtaining customers on the platform.
BigCommerce is a Third Party ownership emarket based on venture capital. While third party owned B2Bs were initially faced with technical and market making challenges, ….. observed that they have currently developed to become real market makers since they tend to be independent and.are.not biased against one category.
On the B2B virtual platform, focus is usually on creating real value through robust online communities and relationship value on commodities unlike B2C platforms where the focus is on competitive pricing and.superior customer service. BigCommerce typically charges a small amount for clients using its integrative platform while purchasing transactions are free of charge.
Scope and Focus
The B2B e-marketplaces domain has been rapidly expanding.owing to growing migration of consumers from traditional shopping to buying through the internet. BigCommerce exploits this growth by limiting the firm’s focus and scope to bus it seeking to grow their brands via an online place. In 2015, the company launched a platform for high volume retailers as scope enhancement
Access (Public versus Private)
The BigCommerce platform is publicly accessible to any supplier or purchaser. Hence, to complete a transaction, both parties have to create a private account that they can continue using any time they wish to conduct business on the platform.
Moore, G. (2000). Crossing the chasm in digital markets. Netmarketers.com. Retrieved from
Myler L. (2017). Grow B2B sales by adding one vertical market after another. Forbes. Retrieved February 12 2019 from https://www.forbes.com/sites/larrymyler/2017/06/21/grow-b2b-sales-by-adding-one-vertical-market-after-another/.
Phillips, C., & Meeker, M. (2000). The B2B internet report-collaborative commerce. Morgan Stanley. Retrieved from.
Warner, A. (2010). BigCommerce: How two programmers who met in a chat room bootstrapped a $10 million eCommerce company – Mixergy. Retrieved from