By Debra Phillips
Doing business on the World Wide Web isn't the anomaly it once was. Indeed, according to author Evan I. Schwartz in the highly readable Webonomics: Nine Essential Principles for Growing Your Business on the World Wide Web (Broadway Books, $25 cloth), new Web sites are popping up literally every minute. Unfortunately, not all of these would-be cyberstars know exactly what they're doing.
"Building a long-term business on the Web is done not just by momentarily grabbing our attention, but also by sustaining it with something of unique value," Schwartz says. "If Web pages are to become more than just the Pet Rock of the '90s, browsing them has to be a satisfying experience in and of itself."
As Schwartz sees it, many companies fail to give Web surfers ample reason to return to their sites after the initial visit. "People are looking for more than just information when they go online," Schwartz points out. "They treat the Web as a place where they can interact with other people. The most effective Web sites are not just billboards on the side of the road."
So is it worth all this time, trouble and consideration to venture forth into this new electronic marketplace--or "marketspace," as Schwartz calls it? After reading Webonomics, you're likely to answer in the affirmative. Given its potential as an exporting tool, the Web could prove to be a formidable force for your business.
E-Stamp Corp., 4009 Miranda Ave., #225, Palo Alto, CA 94304, (415) 843-8000
National Home Office & Business Opportunities Association, 92 Corporate Park, Ste. C250, Irvine, CA 92606, (714) 589-3232
Tim Lynch, Deputy Controller, City Hall, Room 220, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Neopost, 30955 Huntwood Ave., Hayward, CA 94544, http://www.pcstamp.com
PC Crisis Line LLC, 490 San Antonio Rd., Ste. G, Palo Alto, CA 94306, http://www.netbox.com/pccrisis
Pitney Bowes Inc., (212) 684-6300, ext. 313
Rent-A-Husband Inc., 217A Commercial St., Portland, ME 04101, (207) 879-7425