|Start Page Number:||110|
|End Page Number:||130|
|Publication Date:||Mar 2016|
|Journal:||European Journal of Information Systems|
|Keywords:||computers: information, e-commerce, marketing, management|
This article investigates ‘stage’ models that have been developed for researchers, practitioners and policymakers to explain how small businesses move from a basic to a sophisticated online presence and/or provide advice as to how they could do this. The main problem of these models is that small businesses do not necessarily develop their online presence in this manner. In addition, they do not consider that the online presence of most small businesses extends beyond their own website to the use of third party web portals, business directories and more recently social media websites. A new model, the web presence pyramid model, is thus proposed. The model represents the adoption levels of different categories of website features and does this in a non‐linear manner, overcoming a limitation of stage models. A further contribution of the article is the classification of the web presence of small business industry sectors into new categories: Basic Web Presence; Added Value Websites; Online Database Websites and Payment Web Presence. A survey approach was used to conduct an online content analysis of the web presence of Australian small businesses, with the different types of web presences across industry sectors presented using the web presence pyramid model.