Bay Area News Group is rolling out a series of self-service websites in a bid to expand its online sales efforts.

The MediaNews Group unit, which prints a number of daily and weekly papers in northern California including the San Jose Mercury News, is using software from Wave2 to underpin the sites, which include Ad Hawk Open Homes and Ad Hawk Obituaries.

Ad Hawk Open Homes lets real estate agents oversee the design and placement of their own ads without requiring the need to talk to an ad rep. BANG hopes to have half its open-house ads converted to self-service by March and 90 percent by year-end.

The Obituaries site integrates obituary information with a listing on More than 30 area funeral homes have already signed up to use the portal.

Meantime, Wave2 said it signed contracts with five newspapers that will use the firm's self-service software. They are the Tampa (Fla.) Tribune for small business retail; Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch for real estate; Columbus (Ga.) Ledger-Enquirer for obituaries and celebrations; Flint (Mich.) Journal for obituaries; and the (Oklahoma City) Oklahoman for obituaries, celebrations and retail.

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