Background/purpose: This paper discusses the application of ABMS - agent-based modelling and simulation in the analysis of customer behaviour on B2C e-commerce websites as well as in the analysis of various business decisions upon the effects of on-line sales. The continuous development and dynamics in the field of e-commerce requires application of advanced decision-making tools. These tools must be able to process, in a short time period, a large amount of data generated by the e-commerce systems and enable the use of acquired data for making quality business decisions.
Methodology: The methodology of the agent-based simulation used in this paper may significantly enhance the speed and quality of decision making in electronic trade. The models developed for the needs of this research aim to improve the use of practical tools for the evaluation of the B2C online sales systems in that they allow for an investigation into the outcomes of varied strategies in the e-commerce site management as regards customer behaviour, website visits, scope of sales, income earned, etc.
Results: An agent-based simulation model developed for the needs of this research is able to track the interactions of key subjects in online sales: site visitors - prospective consumers, sellers with different business strategies, and suppliers.
Conclusion: Simulation model presented in this paper can be used as a tool to ensure a better insight into the problem of consumer behavior on the Internet. Companies engaged in the B2C e-commerce can use simulation results to better understand their consumers, improve market segmentation and business profitability and test their business policies.
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