Business internet use in small, family owned and managed hotels in Scotland
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Fyfe, J., Seaman, C. & Bent, R. (2020) Business internet use in small, family owned and managed hotels in Scotland. International Journal of Business and Globalisation, 24(2).
Tourism and thus hospitality is a key strategic priority for the Scottish Government which in many communities is still highly dependent on small, family owned and managed hotels. This exploratory study is designed to initiate dialogue and to explore the complexity of the operating environment and perceived business support needs in the ever-more complex and dynamic e-environment. The development of the internet has altered the manner in which the hospitality industry operates; offering global marketing opportunities, open-source review sites and perhaps crucially the opportunity to interact with and sell directly to the consumer. Results indicate that the positive aspects of the internet were perceived to outweigh the disadvantages; however, the learning challenges identified were primarily around the effective management of on-line resources and global reputation. The vital role of small family owned and managed hotels in the development of a coherent tourism offering for Scotland is acknowledged here and can be additionally allied to geography. There are areas in Scotland, and indeed much of the world, that draw tourists yet are not sufficiently populous to host hotel chains or even specialist boutique hotels. In part, the reason tourists are drawn to those areas is precisely their relatively undeveloped nature, yet this creates a challenge for business learning within small independent hotels.