The Impact of Internet
Use on Business-toBusiness Marketing
Examples from American and
European Companies

George J. Avlonitis
Despina A. Karayanni
The Internet has been the favorable theme for numerous
studies and reports, during the last decade. Yet, there is a lack
of systematic empirical evidence regarding the marketing activities that are affected by the use of the Internet, and their
consequent performance outcomes. In this article, we document the role of the Internet in business-to-business marketing
and identify market-oriented activities that are affected by the
use intensity of the Internet. Using a sample of 130 industrial
businesses, we found a substantial positive effect of the use of

Address correspondence to George J. Avlonitis, Athens University of
Economics and Business, Management Science and Marketing Department, 76
Patission Av., 10434 Athens, Greece. Tel: (301) 820 3394; Fax (301) 820
3432; E-mail:

Industrial Marketing Management 29, 441–459 (2000)
© 2000 Elsevier Science Inc. All rights reserved.
655 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10010

the Internet on sales management activities, market-oriented
product management activities, and sales performance and efficiency. The results of this study also stress the central role of
the sales force in the successful implementation of the Internet
marketing strategies within organizations. © 2000 Elsevier
Science Inc. All rights reserved.

The Internet is an information technology (IT) that diffuses at exponential rates among the business-to-business
organizations. According to the Forrester Research (Business Marketing, May 1997), $66 billion in business-tobusiness commerce will be conducted on the Internet by

0019-8501/00/$–see front matter
PII S0019-8501(99)00071-1

the year 2000, with the number of businesses connected
in the Net rising from 4% in 1997 to 33% by then (i.e. the
year 2000). Its high approval and use by...