eCommunities Are an Increasing Source of Business for Software Suppliers, IDC Says

FRAMINGHAM, MA – MAY 1, 2001 – Software suppliers should begin to look at ecommunities as a major source of business despite the dot-com debacle, according to IDC. The market for packaged software deployed specifically to support ecommunities will grow from about $1 billion in 2001 to nearly $6 billion in 2004. This growth represents a jump from less than 0.1% of all software revenue to almost 2% during this time period.


"eCommunities need all the same sorts of packaged software as brick-and-mortar businesses and organizations," said Dennis Byron, vice president of IDC’s Enterprise Applications research. "In fact, the same packaged software strategies brick-and-mortar businesses use to reduce time to market and increase return on investment work for ecommunities. Despite the applicability of similar strategies, however, ecommunities are still different from brick and mortars in how they can deploy and use packaged software, and software marketers need to understand ecommunity needs and additional requirements, as well as the potential drivers and inhibitors, to penetrate this market."

According to IDC, one additional ecommunity requirement of which software marketers should be aware is the need to automate few-to-many and many-to-many relationships online in real time. "Another issue for ecommunities is whether they can start from scratch with a clean sheet of paper, leaving legacy applications, operating software, and, most important, culture and procedures behind," Byron said.

IDC believes building alliances is a critical element to penetrating this market. Alliances are important not only for speed to market but also for the purpose of leveraging brand and customer base to gain market share, attract members, and build liquidity, the last of which is a key concern of ecommunities. “Spending resources trying to internally develop and complete an end-to-end ecommunity solution for each ecommunity will put companies out of business,” Byron advised.

IDC’s recently published bulletin eCommunity Software Market Drivers and Dynamics: Baseline View (IDC #B24340) analyzes the ecommunity software market. Demands, market drivers, and inhibitors are examined. Worldwide packaged software market revenue deployed to ecommunities is forecast through 2004. To purchase this report, contact Cheryl Toffel at 1-800-343-4952, extension 4389, or at

About IDC

IDC delivers dependable, high-impact insights and advice on the future of ebusiness, the Internet, and technology to help organizations make sound business decisions. IDC forecasts worldwide markets and trends and analyzes business strategies, technologies, and vendors, using a combination of rigorous primary research and in-depth competitive analysis. IDC provides global research with local content through more than 700 analysts in 43 countries worldwide. IDC's customers comprise the world's leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, ebusiness companies, and the financial community. Additional information can be found at

IDC is a division of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company.


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