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Lesson 1

Networking Technologies used in ecommerce

What is Networking?

What is the importance of networking within the context of ecommerce solutions?
Question: What is the importance of networking within the context of ecommerce solutions?
Networking is crucial within the context of ecommerce solutions because it enables the exchange of information and data between different components of an ecommerce system, such as servers, databases, payment gateways, and third-party services. This exchange of information is essential for ensuring that ecommerce transactions are processed quickly, accurately, and securely. Some specific importance of networking within the context of ecommerce solutions include:
  1. Reliability: A reliable network is essential for ecommerce transactions. Any downtime or connectivity issues can result in lost sales, frustrated customers, and damage to the reputation of the ecommerce site.
  2. Security: Networking plays a critical role in ensuring the security of ecommerce transactions. Sensitive information, such as credit card numbers, must be transmitted securely over the network to prevent interception or theft.
  3. Scalability: As an ecommerce site grows and handles more traffic, networking becomes increasingly important to ensure that the site can handle the increased demand without crashing or slowing down.
  4. Integration: Ecommerce solutions often rely on integration with third-party services, such as payment gateways, shipping providers, and marketing platforms. Networking is essential to ensure that these services can communicate seamlessly with the ecommerce system and exchange data as needed.
  5. Analytics: Networking allows ecommerce sites to gather data about user behavior, such as browsing and purchase history. This data can be used to improve the user experience, optimize marketing campaigns, and make data-driven decisions about the direction of the ecommerce business.

In conclusion, networking is critical to the success of ecommerce solutions. It enables reliable, secure, and scalable ecommerce transactions, integrates with third-party services, and provides valuable data for analytics and decision-making.

This module discusses how networking provides the pipes that carry the information for ecommerce solutions. It involves technologies that enable physically separate computing devices to share information. Most e-Commerce solutions are Web-based in terms of architecture. Therefore the most important networking elements for e-Commerce involve the hardware, protocols, and software that go into IP (Internet protocol) networks. That does not preclude involving other networks in e-Commerce solutions. Other networks may interface with IP-based networks through gateways[1] and other networking interfaces.

Network Implementation

The implementation of networking a computer system involves:
  1. Specialty hardware devices
  2. Physical wiring (as well as wireless)
  3. Network server and specialty hardware device embedded software

You can think of networking as all the technologies that go in between your computer and all other computers,enabling them to communicate. Technically, however, this definition is not 100 percent accurate. Even your computer runs networking protocols and often contains network hardware devices (like a modem or Ethernet card).


Within the context of e-Commerce, most solutions are delivered through networks using Internet protocols (IP). What is a protocol? A protocol is a set of rules and conventions, like a formal language, that determines how computers exchange information over a network medium (the wires). Later you will read about the Open Standard Interconnection (OSI) reference model, and discover that the OSI model provides a consistent framework for network architecture. A protocol is a specific implementation of a subset of the OSI reference model.

The following networking discussion is broken into six categories:
  1. LAN
  2. WAN
  3. The Internet and Virtual Private Networks
  4. Routers, Switchers, and Bridges
  5. Multicasting
  6. Other Networking Technologies

[1]Gateway: The combination of hardware and software that links two different types of networks.