Corresponding Author

Hong Guo

Document Type



It is important to use appropriate ways to develop e-commerce in rural areas. Despite numerous studies which have addressed barriers that rural areas in developing countries are facing, few studies can be found that were focused on strengths that rural areas could consider about when developing e-commerce. In this paper, we analyzed typical cases (as known as patterns) in Chinese rural areas where e-commerce have been developed in a quick, innovative and successful way. We analyzed these cases and proposed four strengths (i.e., Industry Strength, Resource Strength, Position Strength and Marketing Strength) that rural areas could use when developing e-commerce. Started from the strength, a framework named SASS (Strength, Aim, Subjects, and Solutions) which characterizes key elements to develop e-commerce in rural areas was identified. According to a review on ten such cases, we found that the four strengths and the SASS framework could help us understand such cases in a unified and organized way. Accordingly, reference can be obtained in a more efficient way for top-level design of e-commerce development in similar areas.