Small Business Online Business Cards

by YourOwnSite

Overview of Online Business Cards

These websites advertise a small business. They may include some descriptions of products and/or services but do not have backend databases for convenient product cataloging nor do they provide the ability make online purchases.

Small firms use Web for promotion, not ecommerce Nua Internet, December 2000
“… Small businesses are setting up websites primarily to advertise and promote their business, according to a new study … the number of small businesses that established a website for advertising and promotional reasons increased by 123 percent over the past year. In the same period, the number of small business websites set up primarily to provide ecommerce services decreased by 48 percent …”

A Few Examples

  • Digital Design and Architecture
  • ACADIA Pharmaceuticals.
    This is a very sophisticated business card. It is a multi-page website with extensive company information. It is not hosted for free.

Summary of Features

These basic websites consist of one or more pages of your basic website stuff:

  • text
  • clipart, graphics, photos, animations
  • links to other sites
  • “email us” feature
  • “guestbook” feature
  • “message board” feature
  • background images and colors and music

and since they are business cards they may include

  • product or service descriptions

but they do not include

  • backend databases for storing product information
  • a product search feature
  • online e-commerce capability such as credit card acceptance or shopping carts
  • multimedia features such as streaming video or audio

In order to have these database and e-commerce features you need more than a basic online business card – you need an e-commerce website.


Steps Required for a Free Web Hosting Web Site

The How to Make a Website page lists the seven (7) steps necessary for the successful creation and management of websites and these apply to free websites as well but with the following considerations:

  • Step 1 – Design

    If you are using point and click tools provided by a free web hosting provider then you can skip this step because your choices are limited to the appearances of the various templates that are being offered.

  • Step 2 – Requirements Analysis

    If you are using point and click tools provided by a free web hosting provider then you can skip this step.

  • Step 3 – Domain Name

    If you are satisfied with the use of a subdomain name which is provided for free by most free web hosting providers (see Domain Names) then you can skip this step.

  • Step 4 – Host Selection

    You can get good shared web hosting for less than $5/month now.  See –,,, or website4retail.comClick here to learn more about pay monthly webhosting.  What ever you do, don’t try to host your own website on your computer.  It’s a big mistake.

  • Step 5 – Development

    If you are using point and click tools provided by a free web hosting provider then you can skip this step.

  • Step 6 – Promotion

    Promotion concerns are specific to each type of basic website ( Personal, Family, Special Occasion, Hobbyist, Clubs, Organizations, Online Business Card, E-COMMERCE ); refer to their pages for specific instructions.

  • Step 7 – Management

    no change.

Promotion Concerns Specific to Internet Business Card Web Sites

Once the site is up you will want to:

  • Index the website into the public search engines (see Search Engine Submittals).
    This is done as a free service by most free service providers. If not, then these types of websites must be indexed into the major search engines (via META keyword tag, see Search Engine Submittals) with one or more of two typesof keywords:

    • geographical area, e.g. “Flagstaff”
    • type of business, e.g. “plumber”

    Thus, someone who searches on “plumber” “Flagstaff” will see this site mentioned in the search results.

  • List website in special directories. Most free service providers have a directory of there own that you are automatically submitted to. You may also want to get into other directories, e.g. Jeanette’s Bed & Breakfastin Flagstaff, AZ will want to be listed in these other directories:
    • Arizona Association of Bed and Breakfast Inns
    • Flagstaff, AZ C of C Business Directory

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