The rapid emergence of E-commerce with its competitive characteristics has transformed the business landscape. In its short lifespan of little more than a decade, the Internet marketplace has already seen a dramatic cycle of high peaks and low valleys. E-content sites, whose primary product is information, have had the most difficulty sustaining profitability. The central proposition is that a firm’s business model is an important locus of innovation and a crucial source of revenue creation for its stakeholders. Consequently, the question has become how can an Internet business and e-content Web site, in particular, support a sustainable business model. There is a definite trend occurring away from the totally free content site to the hybrid model of charging for some e-content fittingly termed the ‘some free - some fee’ model. The ‘some free - some fee’ model is one approach that will enable online e-content businesses to create revenue while still offering free content to which many Web users have become accustomed. Understanding the underlying principles of, and the movement towards, the ‘some free - some fee’ model will assist e-content organizations in the transformation of their business model to ensure their survivability in the volatile Internet marketplace.
Journal of Internet Banking and Commerce