Yahoo? MS? It's All Free, So Try Them All

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2008-02-11 Print this article Print

The impetus behind Microsoft's and Yahoo's fervent courting of the SMB market with freebies is simple: There is a huge, untapped number of small businesses, the majority of which aren't online.

Between Microsoft's new freebie, Office Live Small Business tools, and Yahoo's recently announced all-you-can-eat free Web site hosting buffet, you're a fool if you reach for your wallet when it comes to getting online.

In fact, one analyst said, you're crazy if you own a small business and are actually paying for software to get online or to run your operations.

"It is unbelievable what is out there, free, on the Web," said Laurie McCabe, an analyst for AMI. "For project management, for CRM. Do a Google search for whatever you want, plus free, plus online service, and you'll probably find a free online service."

Read the full story on eWEEK's Midmarket site.

Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

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