The Transactional Value of the Internet in Rural America? Nearly $1.4 trillion

The Foundation for Rural Service recently published a report – A Cyber Economy: The Transactional Value of the Internet in Rural America. They surveyed 1,200 user to answer a few questions:

  • How frequently do U.S. consumers use the internet for various transactional purposes—shopping, checking their bank accounts and investments, paying bills, etc.?
  • To what degree do those transactions end up driving actual spending?
  • What is the estimated dollar amount that can be attributed to internet-based transactions?
  • With respect to U.S. urban and rural markets, where does that economic activity occur?

Here are their key findings

  1. Internet usage among urban and rural consumers was largely similar.
  2. Rural consumers are responsible for more than 10.8 billion internet-driven transactions annually out of a total of 69.9 billion annual internet-driven transactions, representing 15% of all internet-driven transactions.
  3. Internet-driven transactions drive nearly 50% of United States gross domestic product (GDP) or $9.6 trillion annually. These transactions are estimated to grow to over 65% by 2022 to $14 trillion annually.
  4. The estimated value of rural online transactions is nearly $1.4 trillion—14% of all internet-driven transactions, or 7% of the U.S. nominal GDP.

It’s an interesting report – who buys what where online. There’s a lot to check out – one interesting note – the market for online transactions and spending is growing…

This entry was posted in economic development, Research, Rural by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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