E-mail--an electronic mailbox where you can send and receive messages--can reduce mailing costs, improve customer relations, and do much more. According to the Find/SVP survey, e-mail is the Internet application used most universally, with 41 percent of all Internet users reporting daily e-mail usage.
"E-mail gives you the ability to communicate in non-real time--unlike the telephone, I don't have to be at my desk when you call," says Jim Sterne, author of World Wide Web Marketing: Integrating the Internet Into Your Marketing Strategy (John Wiley & Sons Inc., $24.95, 800-225-5945). "As a customer or a vendor, I can ask the questions whenever they occur to me--whether it's 11 p.m. or five in the morning." This is also an efficient way to answer questions--if the recipient can't answer the question, they can forward it to the appropriate person.
E-mail is easily attainable through an Internet Service Provider (ISP). If you have a Web site with a domain name, a registered name that represents an address on the Internet, you can route your e-mail through your host's mail server.