The Importance of the Internet in Business

With the advances in technology and the growth of high-speed internet, online shopping has risen. For some businesses the rise in online shopping has meant new channels to target, for others it meant tough competition. As its 2014 and the internet is definitely not going anywhere it is key to understand the importance of the internet in business.

Some of the largest, most successful businesses didn’t see the importance of the internet, so they were left behind whilst their competitors adapted to new technologies and tech savvy consumers.

Here are the most memorable businesses who didn’t adapt to the internet and paid for it:


During its success, HMV was known as the place for all your entertainment needs. However it is now ironically known as ‘the brand that didn’t adapt’. In January 2013, HMV entered administration widely due to the fact that HMV just couldn’t compete with the rise of digital downloads.

Where did it all go wrong?

In 2003 Apple launched iTunes. Many people were sceptical that digital downloads would take off past owning the physical CDs. However, since the launch digital sales of music has rocketed, while CD sales crashed.

As well as fighting off digital music, HMV didn’t see the demand for digitally streaming films.

As consumers demands changed, HMV didn’t adapt to fulfil these new demands. This left competitors such as Netflix and Spotify to offer on demand content, which is what consumers want.


Blockbuster was widely known as the go to company for film rentals. At its peak Blockbuster had up to 60,000 employees and more than 9,000 stores.

So where did it all go wrong?

Blockbuster has struggled to compete with the likes of Love Film and Netflix, who offers customers immediate viewings, which Blockbuster could not offer.

Netflix constantly adapted its business model to cope with technology advances and technology hungry customers. Once offering DVDs by mail, Netflix took full advantage of the ability to stream films so customers could watch films whenever and wherever they want.


Polaroid first started out  polarized sunglasses and polarized lenses, however it is most famous for its instant film cameras which many people know of today. Polaroid outsold competitors with their instant cameras.

So where did it all go wrong?

Well, Polaroid didn’t anticipate digital revolution in photography, whereas their competitors did. In 2001 Polaroid filed bankruptcy and most of the company’s assets (even the ‘Polaroid’ name) were sold.  After this a new company was formed – ‘Polaroid Corporation’. However in 2008, the company filed bankruptcy again. 

Since March 2010, a group called The Impossible Project have developed and manufactured instant film materials for vintage Polaroid cameras. 

Based on the stories above, it’s important to consider the internet and how it can help your business.

Could you create an ecommerce site and sell products online? If your product or service can’t be sold online, could you create interesting content and spread brand awareness?

Want more business tips? Keep an eye out for our Business Tips blogs.

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