Study Anticipates Total
Will Hit $95 Billion in '99, $1.3 Trillion by 2003
by Ken Fermoyle
If I owned a lot of shopping mall stock I'd be getting a little nervous right now.
Commerce on the Web is taking off, and the afterburners will really be lit in the years
ahead. A recent study by ActivMedia Research (first ever to quantitatively study Internet
commerce, beginning in 1994) projects $95 billion in electronic commerce for 1999 and a
total of more than $1.3 trillion in 2003!
The 6th Annual "Real Numbers behind Net Profits" study anticipates a revenue
growth rate of 150% for 1999, more than double the original forecase of 72%, and a growth
rate of 138% for 2000. ActivMedia reports Web revenues continue to flourish across all
industry sectors as online buyers rely on the 'Net for a wider range of goods and
Here is how the groth pattern has been and is projected (in billions of dollars),
according to the "Real Numbers" study: 1996, $2.7; 1997, $22; 1998, $38; 1999,
$95; 2000, $226; 2001, $459; 2002, $826; 2003, $1324.
ActivMedia's VP of Market Research Harry Wolhandler offers some good reasons.
"Expanding cross-language capabilities create increasingly permeable global
boundaries. Speedy digital information flow facilitates free trade and business worldwide.
Political improvements coupled with faster, more efficient cross-cultural communications
are fueling global e-commerce."
A quick look inside "Real Numbers" reveals many interesting bits of data.
* 72% of websites are still based in the US
* 92% of e-commerce is generated through US-based websites
* Exports are becoming increasingly critical to US e-commerce growth
* 9 in 10 revenue dollars are product and service sales, not ads
The "Real Numbers behind 'Net Profits" annual study is based upon a random
sample drawn from 550,000 English-language publicly listed URLs and "presents the
most detailed information about online marketers available anywhere," claims
ActivMedia Research, whose clients include Andersen Consulting, Cisco, IBM, Intel,
Microsoft, Visa, and Yahoo.
Copyright 1999 by Ken Fermoyle, Fermoyle Publications. Ken has written some 2,500
articles for publications ranging from Playboy and Popular Science to MacWeek, Microtimes
& PC Laptop. Ken's Korner, a syndicated monthly column, is available free to User
Groups. For information or permission to reprint this article, firstname.lastname@example.org.