A USDA Fund for Rural America project is creating economic opportunities for small agricultural and rural businesses in the Lower Mississippi Delta by assisting in e-commerce business development. Select rural businesses are provided technical support in web site development, marketing strategy formulation, electronic retailing services, and space on a secure server for one year. Businesses retaining web sites after this time assume responsibility for maintaining and funding the site. Characteristics of rural businesses adopting e-commerce are compared with those not adopting. Preliminary results suggest the amount of time invested in initial web site design, satisfaction with design, economic benefits from owning a web site, and number of levels traveled in the e-commerce roadmap (a measure of technological progress) as determinants of success. These findings will assist in selecting and guiding participant involvement to maximize the likelihood of success.
Watson, Susan, Ogbonnaya Nwoha, Gary Kennedy, and Kenneth Rea. 2006. "The Delta E-Commerce Connection: Preliminary Findings." Journal of Rural Social Sciences, 21(1): Article 2. Available at: https://egrove.olemiss.edu/jrss/vol21/iss1/2