E-mail greeting cards are fun and easy to send, and despite a move toward subscriber-only sites, still available for free. There are online cards for nearly every occasion and to suit all tastes, but remember, many people do not consider an e-mail card a proper substitute for a snail mail one, so know your audience and use judgement.
123 Greetings has lots of cutesy cards, all free, organized into nearly a hundred different categories. Cards can be customized with your message and choice of music, and can be scheduled to be sent up to sixty days in advance. Special features include an extensive calendar of offbeat holidays (April 12 is Hot Dog Day) and the ability to create a card from any image on the Web. If your family photos are already online, this is a very nice feature.
American Greetings offers both free and members-only cards. Free cards include Just Because, Friendship, Love & Dating, and Inspire & Encourage. As is customary with sites that offer paid memberships, all event-related cards such as birthdays, anniversaries, and Mother's Day, are only available to paying subscribers. Best clicks are the free, personalized printable cards and projects, which you'll find under the Create & Print tab at the top of the home page.
What is a Beat Great? A mini music video to send to your friends. Think MTV via email, and you'll get the picture. Featured musicians include a wide range of styles, so you are sure to find an artist you like. Genres include pop, jazz, classic rock, Christian, country, hip hop and nineteen versions of Happy Birthday (listed under Musical Expressions.) As is common with popular music, some parents may find some of the selections unsuitable for their families.
The granddaddy of e-mail greetings cards began offering free online cards in 1995. Today. BlueMountain.com is a collection of both free and members-only cards. Their extensive free selection is found on the right-hand side of their entry page. You won't find any free birthday cards, but you will enjoy Kids Games, Encourage & Support, Animals & Nature, Love & Support Our Troops, and Career (which includes Armed Forces cards.) BlueMountain.com also has a dozen free Create & Print cards.
This nice selection of kid-friendly cards is easy to use, but lacks features such as delayed send, multiple recipients and selectable music. My favorite cards are those listed under Special Collection. Don't miss the fabulous animated art and game cards from thirteen-year old Miles Cooley. To learn more about Miles, and how he became Yahoo's youngest employee, click through to his web site. You'll find the URL on each of his cards. Being an animal lover, I also like the photo cards in the World Wild Life and Purina collections.