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06_b06[論文]ベアル_Situation of Electronic Commerce in Japan an…
ベアル:Situation of Electronic Commerce in Japan and Discussion about Developments to Come
論文
Situation of Electronic Commerce in Japan
and Discussion about Developments to Come
Luc Beal
This article aims at summarizing the size of the Japanese market of electronic commerce (e-commerce) and characterizing its
major components. This requires separate analysis of transactions entirely between firms (B2B or ‘business to business’) and
transactions between companies and individuals (B2C or ‘business to consumer’). Due to the emphasis on the overwhelming size of the
B2B market over the latter, we propose to focus our article on B2C, as it is aimed at readers belonging to the Musashi Institute of
Technology – Yokohama Campus & Yokohama City ‘shimin kouza’ (市民講座) Programme.
We particularly propose (Chapter 1) to interpret market data produced by multiple information sources 1 , to identify patterns of
growth for e-commerce: role of internet technologies and consumption behavior patterns among other things. We then make several
suggestions for the implementation of successful e-commerce strategies by firms (Chapter 2). Finally, in Chapter 3, we shall place the
development of Japanese e-commerce in the broader context of the retailing industry strategies and more specifically the recent moves of
major convenience store chains into internet portals and e-commerce.
キーワード:electronic commerce, B2B, B2C, retail business, distribution, international comparison
1
Interpreting Statistics on E-commerce and
Consumer Behavioral Patterns
1.1 Comparison of the market sizes of B2C and B2B
According to the METI2 , the B2C market represented
share of economic transactions : from less than 0.5% in 2001,
their share (B2B+B2C) should, according to METI, reach 6%
in 2006. Although significant, this share remains low by
international standards (more than 16% in South Korea, 12% in
in year 2000 only 3.8% of the 220 billion yen B2B market, and
is expected to grow to a 4.4 % of the 340 billion yen B2B
the USA and 9% in France)3 .
market in 2006. In other words, while e-commerce is often –
improperly – associated with B2C only, we should remember
that transactions between firms are and will remain, the major
1.2 Development of B2C market
1.2.1 International comparisons
market for electronic commerce.
This preliminary remark
market in 2000 is concentrated in the USA (75% of the total),
Japan having a less than 5% share. In 2004, the dominance of
being
done,
the
electronically -supported transactions represent an increasing
40
35
企業・個人間(B2C)
30
企業間 (B2B)
According to Forrester Research, the global B2C
the USA remains (50%), and while the size of the Japanese
market grows, it will be challenged by South Korea,
experiencing a spectacular growth.
An
international
comparison
of
internet
infrastructures provides a hint of the reasons why countries like
25
20
South Korea experience such drastic progressions : using the
cost of utilizing t
he internet and the number of internet hosts on a
national level, the OECD 4 benchmarked in 2000 the major
15
10
5
0
H10
H11
H12
H13
Exhibit 1 : E.Commerce 市場の規模 (日本)−兆円
(E-commerce: Market scale [Japan]—1 trillion yen)
developed countries. Japan features a high cost of using the
internet and a low number of hosts by comparison to the
population, while the USA offer cheap access and a large
number of hosts.
Luc BEAL
武蔵工業大学環境情報学部講師
37
武蔵工業大学 環境情報学部 情報メディアセンタージャーナル 2003.4 第4号
1.2.2 The major economic segments of B2C
According to the METI , the main applications of
e-commerce are -- by order of importance and for the year 2000
therefore critical to the development of B2C e-commerce: we
can identify 3 types of positive effects : 1) broadband
technology allowing the delivery of new services (digital
-- 1) real estate transactions, 2) automobiles, 3) PC-related
goods, 4) travel-related services.
contents) ; 2) spectacular improvement in user interfaces for
existing services ; 3) intensified use of B2C by existing internet
In terms of ‘penetration’ (i.e. the share of e-commerce
as a percentage of all the transactions), the PC-related goods are
ranked first in 2002 (34% of penetration), followed by
users 8 .
5
automobiles (17.5%), cultural goods such as books and CDs
(15.9%), travel-related goods (15.6%) and real-estate goods
with a very low 3.2%.
Let us now develop several recent statistics regarding
How to accelerate generalization
technology : the case of South Korea.
of
broadband
Thanks to voluntarist policy, the Korean government
achieved in the period from March 2000 to April 2002 an
increase in the subscribers ’ number from a mere 500,000 to 8.5
million, that is virtually 50% of Korean households9 . This could
the behavior of internet and B2C users.
be achieved by a focus on a cheap technology - ADSL – and by
the implementation of a two -phase policy: 1) In the first phase,
1.2.3 Users’ behavior towards the internet and effect
on B2C growth.
In 2000, Japanese subscribers were using the internet
in order to bring down the price of internet subscriptions, the
government is to allocate a budget for subsidizing private
companies willing to provide a reliable and cheap ADSL
in order to: 1) collect information over the world wide web, 2)
communicate (e -mail) and, only in 3rd position, to purchase
service. 2) In the second phase, the emphasis is laid on
liberalizing the telecommunications industry in order to limit
items 6 .
predatory behavior of the incumbent telecommunications
operator.
Frequency and duration of internet use. According to a
2000 survey, 84% of subscribers use the internet everyday.
During the 1997-2001 period, their usage behavior seems to
http://www.oecd .org/ppt /M00031000/M00031567. ppt
韓国の成功: 3つの段階 have matured towards more regularity and, simultaneously,
more efficiency: while the frequency becomes almost daily, the
consolidated connection time diminishes, as a consequence of
high usage costs. When the ADSL technology becomes the
standard, we will probably observe a reversal towards longer
durations.
Technology used for internet access. As of July 2002, an
overa ll 57.7% of users had chosen broadband technologies
(CATV, ADSL) 7 . The diffusion of broadband internet seems
Exhibit 3 : broadband internet に関して,韓国の政策
1.2.4 Users’ behavior towards B2C.
When questioned about how they mostly intend to
use B2C services, Japanese users tended to favor: 1)
information services (travel reservation services, banking, and
entertainment, among other things) and 2) auction services. The
purchase of material goods does not seem to be a priority10.
This may be at least partly explained by the problems
associated with electronic commerce : 1) difficulty of
ascertaining the quality of goods sold; 2) extremely high cost of
communication; 3) troublesome privacy issues and payment
http://www.icr .co.jp/info/press/press20020708. pdf
Exhibit 2 : インターネットアクセス方法( 2002 年7月)
38
security; and 4) insufficient trust in web merchants. It therefore
comes as no surprise that the most popular sites in Japan are
ベアル:Situation of Electronic Commerce in Japan and Discussion about Developments to Come
brands with well established names such as All Nippon Airways,
Kinokinuya Bookshop or Brooks Brothers11.
Overall, among people with buying experience on the
internet, 80% of users had made one purchase per year, and
more than 50% made at least four purchases/year in 200112.
goods17.
2
Suggestions for successful e-commerce
strategies
We would like to outline four majors strategies for
success.
Thirty percent of them bought 50,000 yen worth of goods/year,
fashion goods being more popular among female users,
2.1 Diversification of revenue sources
computer goods the most purchased by males. CDs, DVDs and
travel-related goods are evenly popular with women and men.
goods over the internet, sales information is, among others, a
safe way to secure diversified revenue sources 18 .A famous
These B2C users see in this new purchasing channel several
merits, the most significant being: time saving, 24/7 operating
hours, and the possibility of comparing characteristics of goods
and prices 13.
example is of course Yahoo, which managed to multiply
revenue sources as follows : 1) fee collection associated with
auction service on the Yahoo portal, 2) fee-based premium mail
1.3 The size and potential of B2C over mobile
telephones.
More than 50% of the terminals allowing internet
access in Japan are mobile telephones (Ezweb, J-sky, I Mode).
However, only 20% of these web-enabled telephones are
actually used to access the internet14, e-mail remaining, even
over traditional voice communication, the most popular service
featured by Japanese mobile telephones. Although most
terminals offer reliable payment functionalities 15 , mobile
e-commerce represented in 2001 a small 8% of total B2C
market in Japan16, mostly for entertainment services (more than
Besides revenue originating directly from the sale of
services (extended memory…), and even 3) a membership fee
system associated with its jobs services (Hotjobs).
2.2 Coping with fears and apprehensions of would-be
customers
I used the case of kimonoichiba 19 , a B2C site
specializing in second-hand high-grade kimonos, in order to
introduce a very innovative way of providing critical
information about the quality of the goods sold over the internet.
Besides a traditional auction portal allowing the user to browse
through pictures and descriptions of all the goods proposed, it
features four virtual shops with one manager in charge of each
70% of the market), and a monthly bill of less than 1000 yen
(for more than 55% of users).
of them : his/her mobile telephone number is published,
allowing users to consult him/her about the quality of one
specific good, and particularly to obtain his/her advice about the
As a conclusion, let us say that mobile e-commerce
‘fair’ price of a given good, “Is the bidding price in the auction
still below the value of the good, is it worth offering a higher
seems to be by nature limited to very specific types of
merchandize (paid information, games, melodies), and to a
certain extent to travel services, securities and computer
price or should we rather give up?”
This ‘hybrid ’ web + human interface is particularly
well adapted to the nature of good and to the auction system
(
調査)http://www.icr.co.jp/info/press/press20020708.pdf
Exhibit 4 : 商品セグメントによる端末選択肢
Exhibit 5 : “キモノ市場“競売のHP事例
(Choice of terminals by merchandize types)
(Example of HP market featuring kimono auction)
39
武蔵工業大学 環境情報学部 情報メディアセンタージャーナル 2003.4 第4号
altogether : the fairly high value of each transaction allows the
ecommerce company to cover the high overhead cost of this
human interface.
売り上げ高を増やすための方式:
eーCRM [顧客関係管理]
せんざい:
latent
潜在見込客
2.3 Automating and outsourcing of non-core activities
Ideally, B2C firm should be capable of outsourcing
everything besides 1) the design and maintenance of its web
portal/ home page and 2) all communication with its customers
(also called CRM or customer relations management) as these
are critical for maintaining and even improving the quality of
マスメデ イアを利用して
レスポンスを獲得
儲かる顧客
かくとく:
acquisition
満足度を向上する
こうじょう improve
見込客
ダイレクトマーケテイングで、
「顧客」になってもらう
儲からない顧客
もうからない unprofitable
service. The concept of CRM is in its principal very close to
processes of continuous improvement (or kaizen / 改善),
Exhibit 6 : B2C ビジネスモデルのためのCRMプロセス
well-known in the industry. Conversely, inventory management,
(CRM process for B2C business model: “customer
warehouse ownership and operation, goods shipping and
returned goods management should be as much as possible
relations management”)
「顧客関係管理」
book to be published soon becomes available for order. Of
outsourced, as they require enormous investment and are time
consuming. We should note however that the world famous
Amazon B2C venture insists on the contrary in owning and
course, such methods may be limited by privacy protection
regulations.
operating goods inventory directly, in order to provide the
customer with short and reliable delivery lead times.
3 Recent evolutions in the Japanese retail
industry
2.4 Strategic CRM (Customer relation management)
The extraordinary originality of the Japanese market
towards B2C e-commerce is how it relates to the omnipresent
The
process
of
electronic
customer
relation
management consists of (1) transforming prospective - or
potential - customers into real customers, and among the latter,
(2) to filter out non productive customers. The first process
mostly consists, after having advertised one’s B2C service, to
establish a relationship with prospective customers (in other
words an exchange of electronic mail and links to web pages,
promotion vouchers allowing a discount for the first on-line
purchase…).
The critical condition is to economically manage a
multiple-phase interaction with prospective customers and
induce them to purchase on-line… Practically, CRM consists of
email reminders, limited-period promotions, etc. The second
phase of CRM, which consist of developing valuable customers
while sorting out unproductive ones requires development of
customer profiles, based on past purchases and payment history,
and goods returns with a view to estimating the clients
profitability and adjusting promotion strategy. It also consists of
better knowing the tastes of the customer in order to define
targeted communication strategy. For example, amazon.com
allows the user to request an email to be sent to him when a
40
and extremely innovative convenience store chains. The major
chains - Seven-Eleven, Lawson, Family Mart achieved popular
successes thanks to a very plain business model : a range of a
few hundreds articles available at any hour in small stores
conveniently located.
Over the last two years, B2C e-commerce has
become critical for competitive advantage in this extremely
competitive industry. The strategic vision of the most advanced
actors (Seven-Eleven and Lawson) seems to be to use B2C
portals as a complementary way of proposing merchandise to
the public -- the convenience store remains the key relay for
delivering goods ordered online and even for allowing
customers reluctant to send their credit card information over
the internet, to complete the payment in cash at the store’s
register. In doing so, convenience store chains expect the range
of products and services offered to increase without limit.
Similarly, these chains are progressively introducing inside their
stores so-called ‘multi-media terminals ’, allowing customers to
purchase goods and services not actually available in the store.
ベアル:Situation of Electronic Commerce in Japan and Discussion about Developments to Come
米国
・スプロール
都市形 Sprawl
ライフ
日本
バーチャル
ストア
Virtual Store
選択肢
が広がる
「商品領域・
時間等」
コンパクトシティ
(郊外部は拡大していく) (人口密度高い)
スタイル
郊外へ
買物方法 自動車で、
週末に
歩いて (10分以下)
毎日
ecommerce ゼロから作るべき
存在する:コンビニ
日常的便利
「配送・
決済」
のための 「流通システム・
決済端
インフラ 末」
リアルな店舗
RealS
t
o
r
e
Exhibit 9 : e-commerce に関して,コンビニ業界の戦略
Exhibit 7 : 米国と日本: e-commerce の違い
(Strategies of convenience store industries concerning
The emergence of such ‘virtual stores ’ (web portal
and multi media terminals) in parallel to the ‘real stores’ and, of
course, the extremely efficient logistics systems implemented
E-commerce)
by the industry leaders, together with the much acclaimed
door-to-door parcels delivery services, (takuhaibin20 ) confirms
that the “convenience store around the corner” is the most
exciting thing presently taking place in the Japanese distribution
industry.
4
Conclusion
By international standards, B2C electronic commerce
is not so well developed in Japan. Among the main reasons are
technological and economic impediments, as well as cultural
particularities (reluctance to pay by credit). However, the
technology gap is now in the process of being filled, soon
allowing Japanese customers to browse cheaply and
progressively become familiar with this new form of shopping.
At the end of the day, besides ‘brick and mortar’ firms holding
well-known brand names (JTB, ANA, JR, Kinokuniya…), the
convenience store chains are very likely to become the most
influential actors of B2C in Japan in the years to come,
challenging more traditional businesses such as banking, and
even securities brokerages.
1
Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Postal Services
Agency, etc…
2
http://www.ecom.jp/ecom_e/report/survey/3.29.02.B1.0ECmar
ket.pdf
3
according to Forrester Research.
4
http://www.oecd.org/pdf/M00029000/M00029437.pdf
5
http://www.meti.go.jp/kohosys/press/0002379/0/020218ec.pdf
6
http://www.commerce.or.jp/result/min21/3_1.html
7
http://www.icr.co.jp/info/press/press20020708.pdf
8
http://www.ecom.jp/ecom_e/report/survey/2000.pdf
9
http://www.oecd.org/ppt/M00031000/M00031567.ppt
10
http://www.commerce.or.jp/result/min21/3_1.html
11
http://www.iptp.go.jp/reserch/monthly/2002/162-h14.03/162-all
.pdf
12
http://www.commerce.or.jp/result/min21/1.html#1
13
Nikkei Ryuutsuu Shinbum January 1st , 2000.
14
http://www.iptp.go.jp/reserch/monthly/2002/162-h14.03/162-all
.pdf
15
http://www.oecd.org/pdf/M00002000/M00002806.pdf
16
http://www.iptp.go.jp/reserch/monthly/2002/162-h14.03/162-all
.pdf
17
http://www.icr.co.jp/info/press/press20020708.pdf
18
Exhibit 8 : マルチメディア端末(MM端末)
(Multi media terminal [MM Terminal])
http://www.ecom.jp/ecom_e/latest/ecomjournal_no4/ecomjour
nal_e04.pdf
19
www.kimonoichiba.com
20
The major takuhaibin companies are Yamato, Nippon
Express Pelican and Sagawa Express
41
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