Entrepreneurs of small brick-and-mortar businesses have shown a greater interest in using the Internet to expand small business profitability; but they lacked adequate procedures and risk assessments to mitigate barriers. This was because intense competition among sellers, places small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) that had gone online in the last five years at a disadvantage. The problem explored in this holistic multiple-case study was that adequate procedures and risk assessments for barriers had not been implemented to eliminate the barrier of aggressive rivalry of sellers, which may impede the sustainable advantages for SMEs which had gone online since 2006. This study was informed by the niche strategies of the Porter's theoretical framework. The purpose of this study was to ascertain whether procedures, risk assessments and business strategies could create sustainable advantages for SMEs that had gone online since 2006. A purposive sample of 20 online SMEs from multiple market segments was selected to inform the study. Analysis of interview transcripts revealed three major themes: (a) the barriers to the operation of an online business, (b) the strategies used to mitigate those barriers, and (c) the methods that were utilized to maximize profit. The findings identified that entrepreneurs were experiencing complications in (a) procuring funding, (b) implementing risk assessments, (c) providing procedures, (d) obtaining repeat purchases, (e) retaining customers, (f) navigation glitch, (g) conversing with customers, (h) bonding with customers, (i) website traffic, (j) thin margin, (l) addressing computer illiteracy, (m) computer ownership, and others. The results of the case study could help current or new entrepreneurs to standardize procedures for overcoming bathers, maximize revenue, and sustain competitive advantages. Recommendations resulting from this study included the following: aiming to improve profitability, joining an online barrier reducing associations, standardizing procedures, conducting periodic risk assessments, cataloging the internal controls for preventing barriers, indexing the methods for eliminating barriers, creating directory of online businesses, and distributing the directory to houses in United States. The completed research provided a theoretical contribution to the body of knowledge and scholarly literatures.
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 73/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Entrepreneurship, Web Studies, Electronic Shopping and Mail-Order Houses|
|Keywords:||Online, Profitability, Small business|
Copyright in each Dissertation and Thesis is retained by the author. All Rights Reserved
The supplemental file or files you are about to download were provided to ProQuest by the author as part of a
dissertation or thesis. The supplemental files are provided "AS IS" without warranty. ProQuest is not responsible for the
content, format or impact on the supplemental file(s) on our system. in some cases, the file type may be unknown or
may be a .exe file. We recommend caution as you open such files.
Copyright of the original materials contained in the supplemental file is retained by the author and your access to the
supplemental files is subject to the ProQuest Terms and Conditions of use.
Depending on the size of the file(s) you are downloading, the system may take some time to download them. Please be