It's estimated that about 90% of Irish consumers research products online before making a purchase
Small Irish companies are being encouraged by the Communications Minister to avail of a grant to establish an online presence.
Companies that have ten employees or less can apply for a grant of up to €2,500 to build a website.
It's estimated that about 90% of Irish consumers research products online before making a purchase and that they spend almost €14,000 a minute online.
Research by the Department of Communications shows that businesses who establish an online presence will grow by one fifth, their work forces will grow by one third and they will be more likely to start exporting.
Minister for Communications Denis Naughten explained why it is so important for companies to be online.
He says of the €14,000 spent every minute, "€10,000 a minute is spent on purchasing products outside of Ireland - so there's a huge market there, particularly for small local businesses".