By Matthew Deeter
Over the last 15 years, we have witnessed an evolution in the development and use of electronic commerce platforms. We have seen innovations in shopping, such as innovative one-click ordering and reference selling engines featured by Amazon.com. eBay.com introduced us to the concept of the online marketplace, allowing the transformation of one person's junk into another person's treasure. Garden.com developed a flexible supply chain model allowing small growers and suppliers to fill orders from local inventory, thereby reducing overall carrying costs. And, finally, innovations in multichannel retail operations at JCPenney and Lowe's illustrated how brick-and-mortar retailers could enhance their traditional business models to satisfy Internet shoppers.