By Mariza Halliday - Last update

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What is Commerce?

Commerce refers to the buying and selling of goods, services, or anything of value between two parties such as a business and a customer or business to business.

Commerce is an important part of any business because it connects suppliers and manufacturers of products and services with the customers or clients who need them, satisfying the wants and needs of the customers and allowing a business to profit and grow. This, in turn, allows the national and global economy to grow and develop.

What courses are available?

Universities and colleges in Ireland are offering courses in the following subject areas:

  • Macroeconomics – The study of the fundamental concepts of macroeconomics and supply and demand.
  • e-Business – The study of the necessary skills for developing and managing an e-business or e-commerce department of a larger business.
  • Business Economics – The study of how supply and demand works and the theories and principles that can be applied in real-world scenarios.
  • Economics and Economic Change – A broad introduction to economics and a good basis for further study in economics.
  • Doing Economics: People, Markets and Policy – The study of various economic theories that explain people’s behaviour in buying and selling.
  • Economics & Finance Research – The study research skills and independent research development.

Studying Commerce in college

Commerce courses are available full-time, part-time, online, or in nighttime courses. These are usually 3-4 year programmes and based heavily on theoretical work with assignments, projects, assessments, and examinations throughout the course.

Students of commerce will attend lectures, tutorials, and seminars and undertake individual and group presentations and independent studies. Projects include case studies, business simulations, and insights into web development and e-commerce.

Career options

Students who complete a Commerce course may find employment in the private, public, or NGO sectors or may even start their own business. Commerce is a part of every industry so there are many different career paths available in any industry of interest – anything from Information Technology and Website Management, Marketing and eMarketing, Project Management, Commerce Strategy, Finance, and even Retail and Manufacturing.

If you also speak another language you may be a real asset to any company that trades internationally, or you may be able to immigrate to another country to work for a company there.

Any industry that either buys or sells a good or service is fair game for anyone with a Commerce background, Commerce acts as a gateway to various professional and higher education opportunities. The thriving trade and commerce of the world, as well as an ever-changing economy, make this an in-demand field with several respectable and lucrative career options available.

Related jobs include:

  • Marketing Coordinator
  • Marketing Manager
  • Finance Manager
  • Entrepreneurs and Economists
  • Business owners
  • Business Consultants
  • Accountant
  • Assistant Accountant
  • Senior Accountant
  • Tax Accountant

Further study

An undergraduate Commerce degree is often the first step to go onto further postgraduate study often involving specialization in particular fields and areas of Commerce or Finance such as Financial Law, Accountancy, Chartered Accountancy, Business Administration, Economist or Financial Planner.


Are there any tips for going into the world of Commerce and Business?

Place importance on the accounting and budgeting of your business. Many great businesses fail to succeed due to poor financial management. Studying Commerce will run you through the basics of accounting so you are confident and well prepared to start your own business or go into the management of a business.

Are economic statistics and reports available to the public?

Economic statistics and reports are readily available to the public with a simple search. One of the websites you can visit for interesting data about the economy and commerce for any country in the OECD.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is an international organization that provides statistics, data, and reports you can view at any time. Alongside governments, policymakers and citizens OECD works on establishing evidence-based international standards to find solutions to a range of social, economic, and environmental challenges.

Where can I study Commerce?

Explore your options here

Did You Know?

· Apparel and accessories are the top-selling products in the e-commerce industry.

· The oldest customer service complaint was written on a clay cuneiform tablet in Mesopotamia 4000 years ago. (In it, a customer named Nanni complains that he was sold inferior copper ingots.)

· Before battles, some Roman gladiators read product endorsements. The makers of the film Gladiator planned to show this, but they nixed the idea out of fear that audiences wouldn’t believe it.

· Pizza Hut was one of the first e-commerce platforms and offered online ordering for their pizzas from 1994!

· Like casinos, shopping malls are intentionally designed to make people lose track of time, removing clocks and windows to prevent views of the outside world. 

Mariza Halliday

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