RealTime IT News

EarthLink to Help Businesses Establish Web Stores

Internet provider EarthLink Monday announced a new service that will give small and medium-sized businesses an affordable way to establish storefronts on the Web.

EarthLink's Entrepreneur e-commerce solutions will enable businesses to build full-featured storefronts on the Web for as little as $20 a month. The service, to launch in December, will allow businesses to customize their storefronts with the ability to include product catalogs and offer secure shopping.

"We've given the small proprietor a whole new way to reach customers and sell products and services to a huge global market by making e-commerce affordable and easy," said Garry Betty, EarthLink's president and chief executive officer.

"These sites really make Internet commerce a point-and-click proposition -- without sacrificing functionality or appearance. It's the best of all worlds for a small and medium-sized business."

E-commerce packages are priced from $20 to $80 a month. The higher priced packages support larger product catalogs, include more storage space and detailed site management reports and also give store owners the ability to download information directly into Quickbooks, Intuit Corp.'s small business accounting software.

Powering the storefronts will be technology from Breakthrough Software Inc. The company's ShopZone Web Edition allows individuals and companies to easily set up online stores or malls. The software is designed for Internet providers, portals and online communities that want to offer e-commerce capabilities to their customers.

Users can easily create and manage their stores through any Web browser. The software also supports discussion forms and a variety of other advanced features.