Barriers and Factors Affecting the E-Commerce Sustainability of Thai Micro-, Small- and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs)

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Sustainability (Switzerland)


It is anticipated that e-commerce will contribute to achieving the 17th Sustainable Development Goal, which seeks to improve implementation mechanisms and revitalize global partnerships for sustainable development. However, MSMEs still face a digital gap compared to large enterprises, which affects their e-commerce sustainability. The study’s objective is to examine the factors and barriers affecting the e-commerce sustainability of Thai micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) based on a survey of retail and food and beverage (F&B) service MSMEs in metropolitan Bangkok. Estimations confirm the significance of the TOE framework for Thai MSMEs. Internal e-commerce tools (i.e., smartphones and websites) and external e-commerce platforms (i.e., social media, e-marketplaces, and food delivery platforms) can enhance e-commerce sustainability. However, the age of firms and owners (CEOs) affects e-commerce sustainability negatively. Exports, B2B e-commerce, and e-commerce experience can promote the e-commerce sustainability of Thai MSMEs. However, they perceive that many consumers are still not literate in using e-commerce. In addition, Thailand still has insufficient security to prevent hacking and malware. Therefore, Thai entrepreneurs’ e-commerce literacy is insufficient to enhance their e-commerce sustainability. On the other hand, sustainable e-commerce can increase customer satisfaction, loyalty, and trust through customer support, leading to more long-term online shopping. Hence, this study focuses on e-commerce sustainability-based economic dimensions, as measured by the percentage of e-commerce sales to total sales (e-commerce utilization/intensity).

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Funding Sponsor

ISEAS - Yusof Ishak Institute



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