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Electronic Commerce Growing Quickly on the 'Net

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CARY — A new study shows the Internet growing at an amazing rate. The popularity of the Internet breeds new business opportunities too. Electronic commerce is being adopted by businesses and consumers quickly. WRAL OnLine reporter Tom Lawrence has more on the digital economy and the importance of "information technology."

The U.S. Commerce Department says, during the last five years, information technology is responsible for one quarter of the nation's economic growth. That's strong!

Consider this. When President Clinton took office in 1993, there were 50 web sites. Fifty! Today there are millions with 65,000 added every hour!

Driving much of this growth is the realization that businesses, to be successful, must have a home on the World Wide Web.

The fast pace of business is forced and aided by this new digital economy. The Internet has grown much faster than radio and television. Traffic on the Internet is doubling every 100 days. It's THE new way to do business.

Cary'sStrategic Technologieshelps companies do business on the Internet.

Listen toauorreal audiofiles."It's a convenience you're creating with this medium, giving it to people, which is making it so explosively successful."One hundred million people are using the Internet. Just 4 years ago, only 3 million were Internet users. Tom O'Malia of USC's Entrepreneur Program says entrepreneurs use the Internet to make very small businesses as successful as major corporations.

Listen toauorreal audiofiles."Because we do have the ability to use digital technology we will look as big as the biggest and the big will look no bigger than the smallest."And that leads the U.S. Department of Commerce to project electronic commerce -- business on the Internet -- to reach $300 billion in the next 4 years.

Low cost ways of accessing the World Wide Web, like WebTV, will add millions more users and customers to the Internet.

Listen toauorreal audiofiles."Instant access therefore to trading communities and people looking to provide these products and services. It's like bringing gasoline to a fire."Finding enough skilled workers is a major concern of technology companies. They're working with colleges and universities to recruit more students into those areas of study. The pay is 65% higher than the private sector average. During the next ten years, almost 1.5 million more will be needed. That's more people than than the Big Three automakers employ.


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