E-business adoption among small to medium-sized firms in Saudi Arabia
If the Saudi Vision 2030 target of 35% contribution to the GDP by SMEs should be achieved, they need to sell their products and services more efficiently. This is possible if they have a wider reach of customers both in the domestic and international markets. E-business provides a way to do this. However, the adoption rate of e-business by Saudi SMEs is low. The reasons for this need to be found out and rectified fast as the time available is too short. This paper aims to systematically review the literature on e-business adoption by Saudi SMEs and find out the factors related to the low adoption levels. Google Scholar was searched for identifying papers. They were screened for the selection of papers for this review using the PRISMA flow diagram. Finally, 33 papers were available for this review. The review showed that various technological, organisational, and environmental factors affect e-business adoption by Saudi SMEs. Slow diffusion of innovations causes slow uptake of new ideas like e-business. Although the Islamic traditional culture of the country was a suspect, the evidence shows no significant effect for this factor. Thus, there is no cultural barrier to the adoption of e-business. Two new tools tested were cloud computing and mobile commerce. Both have high promise for the future. The earliest paper selected was that of 2008. Although a maximum of five papers were noted for 2020, the general year-wise trend was irregular. Most papers aimed at identifying the factors of e-business adoption and used surveys as their investigation methods. Some limitations of this review have been outlined at the end.
Keywords: E-business, SME, Saudi Arabia, Review