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Cartfly turns widget ads into online stores

To Cartfly, a widget isn't just a widget. It's a composite advertising space and online store that can make you money when embedded into your Web site.

Cartflyhas a new service for selling goods from a personal Web site or profile. In a twist on the advertising widget, users can customize and embed an online store from into any site or profile that accepts HTML embed code. MySpace, Blogger, and Typepad are examples.

Visitors can browse offered goods, read information about your company, check your reputation in satisfaction ratings similar to those found on eBay and Amazon, and initiate PayPal purchases directly from your widget. Cartfly takes a 3 percent cut on each transaction you make in exchange for providing your store's building blocks and embed code. I lost some confidence when Cartfly didn't immediately authenticate my PayPal account. I gained a spoonful back reading through the seller's payment terms.

While the implementation worked well enough, Cartfly's widget-building interface felt cramped and a little thin on content management tools. I would have liked spell check and a way to delete a banner image I developed second thoughts about. The uploaded effect looks much better, fitting item, seller, and sales information into a relatively compact space with a neat rotating cube transition between information panes.

My test store sells CNET features for $0.00.