We’ve already taken a look at how important Google is the internet economy. So let’s now take a broader look at just how important the Internet is to the US economy. Or, put another way, if somebody switches off the Internet tomorrow would life as we know it come to an end?
Once again we’ll employ Scrap Book logic to the problem and use 2007 Census Data and Forbes’ Global 500 Data to create a bubble chart of the 2007 collective and individual coprorate revenues to visualise an answer to the question.
This bubble map is a little more complex so we’ll take this journey in steps.
Let’s begin in the most logical place. Google.
The bubble chart below displays the relationship Google has to Online Advertising and on through Advertising to the wider [Selected] Services economy. It also allows us to compare Google to other related service industries like Telecommunications and Media.
As you can see the economic impact of the internet on the Services sector is insignificant in dollar terms.
Now let’s restart the journey from another point in the economic landscape. Let’s take a look at how Amazon and eBay fit into the US Retail Sector.
Again we can see the economic impact of the internet on the retail is again not overly significant in dollar terms.
Finally let’s take the same journey through the Manufacturing sector.
Here we discover – quite surprisingly I suspect for most readers - that the Economic impact of the internet is very strong. In fact you will be surprised to discover the economic impact of manufacturing based eCommerce on the US economy is on the same scale as the US reliance on foreign imports – i.e. not just imports from China but the whole world.
What I find fascinating about this discovery is the eManufacturing economy has obviously been quietly and efficiently developed by manufacturing sector to help it drive down costs and improve productivity.
Now compare this “in-house” success to the eRetail and eServices economies that have been developed with the assistance of billions of dollars worth of Venture Capital and it provides us with an even bigger picture of just how efficient the VC’s are in picking industry winners.
So the answer our original question (If somebody switches off the Internet tomorrow would life as we know it come to an end?) is Yes. But not for the reasons most of us would suspect.