Motives, strategies and experiences of electronic commerce for small and medium sized traditional businesses

It was called the “new economy” as well as other strong words, attempting to describe the changes in the way companies were doing business. It was all focused around electronic commerce and the general public believe that this was when electronic commerce started. But it has been around since the 1960’s, and it will continue to thrive although the media has pronounced it dead and gone.

Previously in the so called “electronic boom” it is the new formed Internet based companies, and the larger international firms that has gotten all the attention. Small firms operating in the traditional world selling physical products, has not been a target of great interest when discussing electronic commerce. For this thesis they are.

The thesis tries to, with five case studies, give answers to some motives that small companies have to venture into electronic commerce. Further, to show what strategies they form for this venture. And as a follow up and check back, what experiences they have had so far in the electronic world.

Most companies claim that they have thought of electronic commerce and what this can do for their company. But with the few motives that most companies have provided, it seems that they are not that well informed and aware of the full potential of electronic commerce. And thus the strategies that they have formed may not be the best business decision for the company.

Most companies in the study has passive motives for electronic commerce such as keeping up with the competition and be ready for the future. And the need for having an online presence has mostly been recognized from within the companies. The majority of the companies in the study has taken to the strategy of information only for their electronic commerce venture, and feel that their business is not suited for making transactions through electronic means, but rather in the traditional manner.

Author: Magnusson, Peter

Source: Luleå University of Technology

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