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A taxonomy of SME E-commerce platforms derived from a market-level analysis

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posted on 19.06.2018, 09:06 authored by Christopher P. HollandChristopher P. Holland, Manuela Gutierrez-Leefmans
Copyright © 2018 Christopher P. Holland and Manuela Gutiérrez-Leefmans.Published with license by Taylor & Francis. Small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) constitute a large and important sector of the U.S. and U.K. economies and e-commerce platforms have evolved that are designed specifically to help small business owners and entrepreneurs. Despite the popularity and importance of these digital platforms, there is a paucity of research in this area. This article contributes to theory by being the first study to map out the competitive landscape of SME e-commerce platforms in two markets using a theoretical framework and analysis that is based on business model and strategic group theories. In total, 144 platforms were analyzed using an online panel data methodology, which identified 32 leading SME e-commerce platforms in the UK and United States. These leading platforms were analyzed at the market level using cluster analysis based on strategic group theory and website content analysis. A taxonomy is proposed based on theoretical constructs derived from business model theory: value proposition, Web 2.0 sophistication, and revenue model. Five distinctive strategic groups are identified: information laggards, basic networking, advanced networking, advanced networking mature, and social media markets. The study further outlines managerial implications for SMEs, SME e-commerce platform providers, and external sponsors of the platforms—predominantly government organizations and banks.

History

School

  • Business and Economics

Department

  • Business

Published in

International Journal of Electronic Commerce

Volume

22

Issue

2

Pages

161 - 201

Citation

HOLLAND, C.P. and GUTIERREZ-LEEFMANS, M., 2018. A taxonomy of SME E-commerce platforms derived from a market-level analysis. International Journal of Electronic Commerce, 22(2), pp. 161-201.

Publisher

© The authors. Published by Taylor & Francis

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Acceptance date

10/07/2017

Publication date

2018-03-27

Notes

This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Taylor and Fracis under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Licence (CC BY-NC-ND). Full details of this licence are available at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

ISSN

1086-4415

eISSN

1557-9301

Language

en