Conceptualising how SMEs incorporate green content in their websites
Keywords:Small and medium enterprises (SMEs), ecological responsibility, websites, content analysis, framework, green information systems
AbstractThis paper presents a framework on how Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) can proactively incorporate content relating to their ecological responsibility (or green) activities in their websites. SME studies offer limited guidance on, and conceptualisation of, how organisations can incorporate different types of content into their website designs. This paper addresses this problem by presenting the results of an exploratory, qualitative content analysis of Australian SME websites where emergent themes are interpreted using framing and legitimacy theories. It describes three dimensions (location, presentation, and specificity) which comprise the framework, under which the themes are grouped. The paper outlines how scholars can use the framework to develop models and carry out evaluations regarding how SMEs embed green content, and potentially other specific content types, in their websites. It also summarises how the framework can assist SMEs (or website developers serving them) make informed decisions regarding framing their websites as green, or de-emphasising this content, by paying attention to its location (e.g. homepage, navigation bars) and presentation (e.g. how paragraphs, images, etc are used) within webpages. The legitimacy or credibility of the green content can be enhanced using different types of specificity (e.g. statistics, detail of processes and actions, and third-party substantiation).
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