Merit

Web Development X Market Invention


With technology’s incessant expansion and the rise of social media, having a presence on the internet is a must in today’s markets.  Businesses employ entire teams of social media experts and content creators, web developers to create and deploy new web-based technologies, and entire IT departments to make sure everything runs smoothly. As markets grow, these teams will surely grow as well.

An Online Store Is Born

In 1995 a young man sits at his desk at home over vacation clacking away at his keyboard, finishing code for a website that would allow people to post items for sale and allow other people to place bids on that item to purchase.  He was attempting to “bring together buyers and sellers in an honest and open marketplace”.  That is a quote from Pierre Omidyar, creator of AuctionWeb, which would later become eBay.

In just a few years, as the internet grew and more and more people were connecting up, eBay quickly became a household name.  It was something exciting on the internet that everyone could be a part of. It had a yard sale feel to it, with people posting anything from broken laser pointers to cars, and even homes.  Everyone was anxious to find a deal or look for an obscure collectible, and eBay was the place to look.

As the site exploded, there was a growing need to figure out a way to distinguish the trust-worthy buyers and sellers from the scammers.  This is when eBay introduced the “Feedback Forum”, a way for members to rate their transactions and the beginning of the basic internet rating system we all use today.  This fostered more trust in eBay as everyone was now able to see user ratings and comments left by previous buyers and sellers from a particular individual.

Continued expansion in the e-commerce market and growing membership rates were all good things for eBay. People started entire businesses around buying and selling on eBay and as those businesses grew, they began to worry about the fluctuating pricing of goods the auction style posts offered.  With this issue in mind, eBay introduced the “Buy It Now” option. This gave the seller an option to set a price at which the consumer could purchase the item immediately without waiting for the auction to end, putting it one step closer to becoming a true e-commerce marketplace.

All these features discussed were created and implemented over fifteen years ago by smart and savvy web developers. None of these features were created with modern technologies! I know I have only discussed eBay here, but there are far more market inventors that are exclusively, or mostly digital services, like Netflix, Amazon, PayPal and Salesforce.com. The one thing these businesses all have in common is a  strong web development team.

Web development has come a long way since ARPANET (the precursor to the Internet), where web development was just a few markup files used to make a basic website with an animation of a dancing baby, a very limited amount of functionality and a lot of pop up ads.  Today, anything you can dream up, we can do on a website. Websites used to require teams of developers to code, but as the web advanced, so did the code, and the way we code.  Over the years, many new frameworks, APIs and coding languages, were created to make web development faster and easier.  Complicated, but still easier.

If you are looking to invent a market, then you need to have a presence on the internet.  With the proliferation of the internet, 55% of people world wide (3.2 billion people as of June 2018) are connected, you have the ability to reach out to every one of them with a web site, a Facebook profile and a dedicated web development team.

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