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No Pain, All Gain Still don't have a Web site? That doesn't mean you can't join the digital economy.

By Robert J. McGarvey

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

If you want an easy way to market to Internet customers but haveneither the energy to put up a do-
it-yourself electronic storefront nor the cash to pay consultants,all hope isn't lost: New Web-based marketplaces are cropping upwith the aim of serving as a meeting ground for small businessesand consumers. Used wisely, these low-cost services may be thevehicle you need to get your products onto the informationsuperhighway.

How do such services work? One example,, which is funded in partby onetime Netscape CEO Jim Barksdale, is a site where customerscan name their own prices for items in more than 3,000 categories.The process is simple: A buyer logs on, expresses interest in aproduct and names the price he or she wants to pay. As customerrequests come in, they're distributed through to participatingentrepreneurs, who can then decide whether to respond, ignore orcounter-offer.

For now, monthly fees for merchants range between $10 and $20.Business owners won't be expected to pay additional fees perlead or commissions on sales. "Even if you don't have yourown Web site, this service lets you sell online," says WillClemens, CEO of, who explains that merchants need onlyan e-mail account to participate.

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