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Variations in Adoption Factors and Use of E-Commerce Among Small Businesses: Are all SMEs the Same?

Variations in Adoption Factors and Use of E-Commerce Among Small Businesses: Are all SMEs the Same?
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Author(s): Elizabeth A. Regan (Morehead State University, USA) and Scott Wymer (Morehead State University, USA)
Copyright: 2006
Pages: 3
Source title: Emerging Trends and Challenges in Information Technology Management
Source Editor(s): Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, D.B.A. (Information Resources Management Association, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-019-6.ch269
ISBN13: 9781616921286
EISBN13: 9781466665361


Adoption and use of e-commerce and e-business Internet technologies (EEIT) by small and medium enterprises (SMEs) has been the focus of considerable research over the past ten years. This research study builds on the authors’ prior work (Wymer and Regan, 2004, 2005) examining the diverse list of incentives and barriers found in the literature and consolidating them into a neutral list of factors to clarify whether they are perceived by SMEs to have a positive or negative influence on the adoption and use of EEIT. A major question that is being asked in SME research is whether results can be applied to all SMEs as a monolithic block, or if results differ significantly for various types of SMEs. This research proposal focuses on examining factors which are perceived as incentives or barriers for adoption of by SMEs, and looking at differences in how these factors are considered in SME subgroups. In previous examinations of these factors comparing SMEs in urban and rural settings, significant differences were found in both the use of EEIT and in perceptions of barriers and incentives (Wymer and Regan, 2005). Three additional SME subgroups will be considered in this study: (1) the size of the business in terms of the number of employees, (2) the industry sector of the business (by NAIC codes), and (3) the geographic market scope of the business.

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