E-Commerce Boost for Rural Life

Article excerpt

In Wales we are fortunate to have some of the most stunningly varied scenery imaginable. However, these beautiful locations face a myriad of economic and community issues.

For example, commercial pressures on the agriculture sector has resulted in more young people being lured from rural areas for the bright lights of metropolitan areas.

However, encouragingly, e-commerce is increasingly being used by rural enterprises and communities to help create a new and dynamic rural working and living environment.

Traditionally, various factors would determine where a business would be located, and in many cases to be viable the enterprise would need to be close to its intended marketplace. Today with the effective use of e-commerce, it is becoming increasingly feasible for businesses to be located wherever the proprietor chooses.

This helps to ensure that individuals do not have to migrate from rural Wales in order to set-up and run their own businesses, and it also allows people to return to rural Wales to run their enterprises. Importantly, e-commerce doesn't only help the obvious types of rural businesses - tourism being the prime example.

Instead, e-commerce is allowing professionals to run their businesses from their chosen location. For instance Opportunity Wales uses suppliers including PR professionals, designers and even direct mail houses all working from rural locations in Wales.

Add to this specialist producers of high-quality food and drink and designers of fashion goods and you get an appreciation of just how diverse businesses in a rural environment can be.

Equally diverse are the ways in which e-commerce can help businesses. Such ways range from time-saving measures such as banking on-line and using e-mail marketing to cost-effectively communicate with customers, to more sophisticated applications such as using e-commerce to manage stock levels and ordering processes. …