A Self-Service Rental Car

Web 2.0 businesses -- online ventures like MySpace and YouTube whose customers upload the goods rather than buying retail products -- can teach businesses that operate in the physical world a few tricks about customer satisfaction. Zipcar, the urban car-sharing company that now operates in eight U.S. cities, has brought a Webby mindset -- automation, transparency, community -- to the rubber-meets-road business of car rental. The company's customer-pleasing methods could work for plenty of brick-and-mortar operations.

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