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Niche Markets and Electronic Commerce

This paper investigates e-commerce strategies when in addition to the price, firms can control the size of the market area. Due to the shape of the commercial costs (e.g. costs of the e-commerce activity) the following results emerge: 1) if the average costs of commercial are decreasing in the market area size, firms serve the entire market, 2) if the average costs are U-shaped firms decide to limit the market area, 3) the firm’s behaviour is socially optimal. The paper also analyses the quality of the web-service, the formation of trade areas and the role of transport costs.

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Paper provided by KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy in its series KITeS Working Papers with number 147.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2003
Date of revision: Jul 2003
Handle: RePEc:cri:cespri:wp147
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  1. Simon P. Anderson & Andre de Palma, 1998. "From Local to Global Competition," Virginia Economics Online Papers 344, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
  2. Grossman, G.M. & Helpman, E., 1989. "Quality Ledders In The Theory Of Growth," Papers 148, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
  3. Krugman, Paul R., 1979. "Increasing returns, monopolistic competition, and international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 469-479, November.
  4. Krugman, Paul, 1980. "Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 950-59, December.
  5. Kohlberg, Elon, 1983. "Equilibrium store locations when consumers minimize travel time plus waiting time," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 211-216.
  6. Hart, Oliver D, 1985. "Monopolistic Competition in the Spirit of Chamberlin: A General Model," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 529-46, October.
  7. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
  8. Krugman, Paul R, 1981. "Intraindustry Specialization and the Gains from Trade," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 959-73, October.
  9. Yannis Bakos, 2001. "The Emerging Landscape for Retail E-Commerce," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 69-80, Winter.
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