More Small Businesses Using Internet

The number of small businesses in the US using the Internet (SBIs) will double by the year 2002, according to a report by Cahners In-Stat Group. Cahners reports the number of SBIs currently using the Internet is just over one million right now, and will be close to two million in five years.

“SBIs are interested and eager to use information technologies so that they become more competitive and profitable over the next five years,” said Kneko Burney of In-Stat’s Market Segmentation Information Service. The report was based on a sampling of 850 US companies.

As a result of this growth, the IT market opportunity in the US will frow from $40 billion in 1998 to $90 million in 2002, the report said. Most of this market will be comprised of hardware and software products.

Two reports released last month by The Yankee Group and In-Stat found that small businesses in the US were not taking advantage of the Internet and its commerce opportunities. Only 30 percent of the companies surveyed by The Yankee Group said the Internet was important to their goals. At that time, In-Stat reported that costs and security concerns were the chief obstacles that kept small businesses from conducting Internet commerce.

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