E-Commerce revenues have grown substantially over the last several years and according to Jupiter Research (2002), online purchases are expected to grow to $217 billion in the next five years. The US Trade Commission has reported astounding, yet untrue facts regarding the rate of growth and its impact for American businesses. "...the western industrialized nations dominate Internet development and use, by the year 2003 more than half of the material posted on the Internet will be in a language other than English. This has large ramifications for e-commerce and ease of transactions, security, and privacy issues. Policymakers, industry leaders, academicians, and others are concerned that this development will not correlate with equal access to the Internet for many in developing nations--therefore creating a global "digital divide." (US Trade Commission) Yet, this did not occur. In fact, English has dominated the internet as well as in international trade.
But what this illustrates is the concern for a shift in the e-commerce industry, and for the US to stay on top of it by every means that they can employ. Certainly, the e-commerce world has grown with rapid potential; however, there are fundamental elements to be considered with supply chain management and barriers to entry that hinder further growth. Accordingly, different methodologies have been formulated and applied to better deal with the issue. Traditionally, e-commerce has no outlined definition; it can be summarized as follows: [e-commerce is...] "using an electronic network to simplify and speed up all stages of the business process, from design and manufacturing to buying, selling and delivery. E-commerce is the exchange of information across electronic networks, at any stage in the supply chain, whether within an organization, between businesses, between businesses and consumers, or between the public and private sectors, whether paid...