International e‐marketing: opportunities and issues

Jagdish N. Sheth (Goizueta Business School, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA)
Arun Sharma (School of Business, University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida, USA)

International Marketing Review

ISSN: 0265-1335

Publication date: 1 December 2005



E‐marketing is growing at a dramatic pace and is significantly impacting customer and business market behaviors. As a result, most firms have started developing e‐marketing strategies for the web. However, the evolution and strategic direction of e‐marketing strategies in international environments has not been discussed and is the focus of this paper.


In this paper, the authors examine two issues based on extant literature and our previous research in this area. The authors discuss e‐marketing in an international context and develop a framework that will allow researchers and managers to understand the impact of country level effects on e‐marketing strategies. The paper proposes that the evolution of e‐marketing strategies is based on the countries infrastructure and marketing institutional development.


It is found that international e‐marketing strategies are fundamentally changing, and will continue to change, marketing thought and practice in international markets. The paper suggests that the e‐markets of tomorrow may have little resemblance to the markets of today.

Research limitations/implications

The paper suggests that additional conceptual and methodological research is required in this area. Propositions are derived that will provide directions for future research.

Practical implications

Firms need to better monitor their international environments to determine the type of strategy that they need to follow. The proposed strategies are – brick and click strategies, digitization, disintermediation, buying groups and alternative infrastructure, firm driven e‐marketing strategies, and corporate exchanges.


This paper is the first attempt to examine the relationship between a country's infrastructure, marketing institutions and the appropriate e‐marketing strategies.



Sheth, J. and Sharma, A. (2005), "International e‐marketing: opportunities and issues", International Marketing Review, Vol. 22 No. 6, pp. 611-622.

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