The tool, called SiteBuilder, lets customers create a Web site using an array of templates and interface options. The product also lets people develop pages while offline through an application download and then upload publishing changes onto their sites. SiteBuilder is free for Yahoo Web Hosting subscribers.
The launch highlights Yahoo's latest attempt to beef up its services for small businesses. The idea is to combine various Yahoo services, such as business e-mail, Web site hosting and online promotion for mom-and-pop businesses that want to go online.
Small and medium-size businesses are a potential source of revenue for Yahoo. Earlier this week,in cash and stock, largely to tap commercial search revenue from smaller online businesses.
"We think Overture will be a major contributor to our small-business offers," said Rich Riley, vice president of Yahoo's small business division.
By early next year, Yahoo plans to fold in e-commerce functions from its Yahoo Store business into its Web hosting business, Riley said. However, the performance of Yahoo's e-commerce hosting business has been unclear since the company discontinued disclosing its transactions revenue line.
Riley declined to provide specifics on the performance on Yahoo's small business division. He said Yahoo currently has "hundreds of thousands" of small-business customers spread through Web hosting clients, Yahoo Store customers, business e-mail and for-pay GeoCities Web publishing services. However, Riley would not disclose the number of Web hosting subscribers the company has.