When did eCommerce really start?
I’m old enough to know of a time when shopping electronically was unheard of and everyone had to go to a brick and mortar store to buy things as it was the only means of shopping then. Even having a mobile phone was an unheard of thing. But before we knew it, eCommerce became the in thing and not having a mobile phone was totally unheard of.
When I received a Shopify newsletter asking the question When did eCommerce really start? my interest was piqued. When exactly did eCommerce really start?
As an author, sales of my books is helped very much by eCommerce, so I should really know the genesis of this great thing that’s helped my author career, right?
First of all, check out this video by Shopify to see what they found out when they looked into the matter further
If you are unable to listen to the video, here’s what it says
We found that one of the first things ever purchased online, was a large pizza from Pizza Hut in 1994. Just recently, Pizza Hut celebrated the 20th anniversary of that online transaction by giving all medium and large pizza orders 50 percent off when purchased online.
While it’s true that pizza was one of the first things purchased on the internet—there were actually other transactions made online before the inception of the Internet (as we know it) even existed.
In the 1970s, Stanford students used Arpanet (an early packet switching network and the first network to implement the protocol suite TCP/IP) accounts to engage in a transaction with students at MIT. They used the network to quietly arrange the sale, and purchase, of the first product ever sold through telecommunications—marijuana.
The key ecommerce pioneer, however, wasn’t Pizza Hut or Stanford students—no, it was actually someone purchasing a Sting CD on the 11th of August 1994. It was the first ever ‘secure online purchase’, or ecommerce transaction, when it was sold by US retail platform NetMarket.
Since that seminal transaction, commerce changed forever. Little did that Sting fan know, his transaction paved the way for ecommerce as we know it.
So there you have it! Exciting bit of trivia eh 😉 Talking about shopping, I’m wondering if I should write about Trade by Barter in a future article. What are your thoughts on this post When did ecommerce really start? Do you think I should write about Trade by Barter? fPlease leave a comment below.