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Concentric Streamlines E-Commerce Offerings

Forrester Research forecasts that online sales will double each year through 2003. Concentric Network Corp. Tuesday unveiled new small business offerings designed to capitalize on the trend.

Concentric Network Tuesday unleashed its updated e-commerce program designed to provide Web stores with real-time transaction processing and advanced sales reporting tools.

Concentric is able to offer online credit card processing capabilities through a partnership with CyberCash. By integrating sales transaction and web hosting services, business owners no longer have to consult a myriad of financial institutions to set up merchant accounts.

The ConcentricHost E-3 plan lets business owners develop advanced browser-based tools on their e-commerce Web sites, without having to develop advanced programming knowledge.

The advanced merchandising and reporting tools allow companies to better track and understand the purchasing patterns of their consumers. By utilizing the cross product selling feature, companies can suggest complimentary products or through reporting tools identify which products are the top selling items.

Connie DeWitt, Concentric's director of marketing for network applications services, said e-commerce enterprises demanded real-time solutions for their non-stop web sales.

"We have seen incredible pent up demand for the advanced merchandising and real-time capabilities of the E-3 plan," DeWitt said. "Many companies are seeing the advantage of extending their business reach, to capitalize on the advantages of a sales channel available 24 hours a day, seven days a week."

The ConcentricHost E-3 plan is available for less than $150 a month, with one-time $200 set-up fee. Concentric's business service offering includes Digital Subscriber Line access, Web hosting services, e-commerce programs, and virtual private networking solutions.