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Interland Teams with PayPal to Provide Breakthrough E-Commerce Solution for Small and Home-Based Businesses
WEDNESDAY, MAY 07, 2003 9:04 AM
ATLANTA, May 7, 2003 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Interland (INLD) , the leading provider of Web hosting and online services for small and medium businesses, has combined its Web site creation and hosting technologies with PayPal's electronic transaction platform to create E-Store Builder(TM), an online storefront building tool specifically designed for small and home-based businesses.
E-Store Builder is part of Interland's latest comprehensive suite of easy-to-use online services called Business Solutions, which provides all the tools and services a business needs to build, manage and promote a successful online presence.
"Interland's partnership with PayPal is the natural extension of two industry leaders dedicated to making online commerce functionality available to the growing, yet underserved, SMB market," said Joel J. Kocher, chairman and chief executive officer of Interland. "Interland's E-Store Builder has been carefully designed to meet the unique needs of small and home-based businesses seeking to expand and enhance their ability to produce revenue online."
With Interland's E-Store Builder, setup is so clean and simple that small and home-based businesses never have to work with HTML or complex applications. Working in a wizard-driven authoring environment, the user simply selects a desired product and catalog layout, then defines categories and individual product entries. With a single click, E-Store Builder then automatically places the completed catalog of products and PayPal 'Buy' buttons into the end user's Web site where it takes on the look and feel of the site's design. E-Store Builder is also extremely scalable; it can even accommodate professional high-traffic applications, which, up until now, could only be accomplished with complex and expensive solutions.
"Using E-Store Builder, Interland's Business Solutions customers now have the power to sell online with the ease of a couple of clicks and no merchant account set-up or monthly fees," said Todd Pearson, vice president of merchant services for PayPal. "Prior to Interland's integration with PayPal, Web site owners needed to open their own merchant account and integrate complex transaction platforms into their sites. By incorporating PayPal into E-Store Builder, Interland has made it easy for small businesses to easily and cost effectively commerce-enable their Web sites."
PayPal's industry leading payment platform is integrated throughout Interland's E-Store Builder, providing single-click access to many of the tools necessary to manage and run an online store, including the ability to automatically include buy buttons with each product, set prices, define payment options and shipping methods. And most importantly, the secure PayPal shopping cart allows buyers to purchase multiple items from the builder's online store through a seamless checkout process. Interland's customers are then able to track orders received and have access to reports through PayPal's robust reporting tools.
More information about E-Store Builder, one of many features found in Interland's Business Solutions portfolio, is available by visiting: http://www.interland.com/sb/.
Interland, Inc. (INLD) is the leading Web hosting and online services company dedicated to helping small and medium businesses achieve success by providing the knowledge, services and tools to build, manage and promote businesses online. Interland offers a wide selection of online services, including standardized Web hosting, e-commerce, application hosting, and Web site development, marketing and optimization tools. For more information about Interland, please visit www.interland.com.
For Interland, Atlanta
Edelman Public Relations
Marisa Puthoff, 404/262-3000 x6346
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A Once and Present Innovator, Still Pushing Buttons
By STEVE LOHR
ONCORD, Mass. -- EARLY one morning last month, 14 small-business owners gathered around a table and, over coffee and muffins, spoke for the next two hours of their curiosity and qualms about taking the technological plunge into Web sites, company e-mail addresses and perhaps even selling over the Internet.
They ran genuinely small businesses, most with a handful of employees, some sole proprietors among them. They sold bridal clothes, antiques, jewelry, security systems, flowers, herbal-care products, greeting cards and gourmet foods. Most of them said they used e-mail-messages regularly, but none had company e-mail addresses or Web sites.
This focus-group session was one of dozens sponsored in the last few months by Interland, a company that is hoping to cash in on the potentially vast but tricky market for helping small businesses get online. Behind the one-way mirror at this session and others sat Dan Bricklin, Interland's chief technology officer. His job is to study how small businesses do, and do not, use technology — the needs, wishes and fears of their owners. Then, he must try to design simple, affordable software tools to give them what they want.
Sitting behind the mirror and observing the group inside, Mr. Bricklin said that the real challenge was to figure out how to reach a portion of the 20 million businesses in the United States with 10 employees or fewer and ease their entry onto the Internet.
"This is the mass market for small business," he said. "Cracking this market is the holy grail."
A daunting challenge, but if anyone is up to the task it is Mr. Bricklin, who has spent most of his career as an entrepreneurial small-businessman, as well as a skilled technologist.
Mr. Bricklin has already played an important role in helping democratize technology as a pioneering innovator in the personal computer industry and says that he thinks the Internet is the next step in delivering powerful technology to individuals and small businesses. "The beauty of the PC was that it leveled the playing field and let small businesses do so much more," Mr. Bricklin said. "This technology is that same kind of tool."
He and his friend and collaborator, Bob Frankston, created the electronic spreadsheet program called VisiCalc, which jump-started the personal-computer revolution. The big money in spreadsheets would be made by big companies — first Lotus Development, which bought Mr. Bricklin's firm, and later Microsoft. Yet Mr. Bricklin showed the way in 1979 with the spreadsheet program, a practical tool for business that allowed anyone with a personal computer to do financial modeling and simulation previously available only to corporations with mainframe computers and corps of research analysts.
By instinct, philosophy and breeding, Mr. Bricklin explained, he is a small-businessman.
His father, Baruch, and his grandfather, Simon, managed the family printing business in Philadelphia. Mr. Bricklin went to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he caught the computing bug in the days before there were such things as personal computers. He earned an M.B.A. at the Harvard Business School, where he came up with the idea for VisiCalc.
Since then, he has moved from one idea and venture to another, including Demo, a simulation software program designed for nonprogrammers, and Slate, which made software for pen-based computers before that market emerged with simple products like hand-held computers. Some of Mr. Bricklin's efforts have been successful and others not. He has made a good living, if not a killing.
He personifies what Eric von Hippel, a professor of business at the Sloan School of Management at M.I.T., has called the "lead-user phenomenon," observing that so much of practical innovation comes from a small number of imaginative people who tinker with the latest technology.
Mr. Bricklin first demonstrated that trait as a child, building a shortwave radio, a stereo that the family played for years and a kitchen intercom that his mother, Ruth, used to summon him to meals from his bedroom upstairs.
These days, Mr. Bricklin is tinkering with new gadgetry. He carries a pocket-size digital camera, the latest cellphone equipped with organizer software and a tiny keyboard and a new notebook personal computer with a screen that can be used as a tablet for writing notes with a stylus.
But his real interest lies in trying to bridge the gap between geeky technology and ordinary people.
"My focus has been mainly on the regular user," Mr. Bricklin said. "The challenge is to make it easy to use tools."