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Small business use of the Internet: Findings from Australian case studies

  • Year: 2015
  • Author: Simpson Poon and Paula M.C. Swatman
  • Country: Australia

Internet use among small businesses has recently become a popular topic for researchers in the fields of Information Systems and Entrepreneurship. In view of the media hype this topic has received over recent months, it is important for small businesses to learn from the experiences of early adopters of the Internet. In this paper we present the results of case study research involving twenty-three Australian small businesses which were early adopters of the Internet—and which are still users. We find that they are predominantly using the Internet as a communications medium and, to a lesser extent, as a document transfer and advertising channel. Management enthusiasm and perceived benefits seem to be the driving force for ongoing Internet use, although we discovered little or no integration between internal applications and Internet inter organisational functions. Our findings also point to the importance of entrepreneurship for successful Internet use.

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