Small business owners surely want to SAVE money. We’ve got enough expenses and fees to deal with. So when it comes to getting FREE technology software to help run our businesses – we jump at the chance.
In fact most tech companies offer some element of their services for free to get people in the door. Former Wired Magazine editor, Chris Anderson, spoke and wrote about this quite a bit. The “freemium” business model.
The problem with free is that most companies cannot properly serve their customers on FREE. You can’t provide upgraded software on FREE. You can’t provide proper tech support on FREE. Free just doesn’t work.
I think with that in mind Google recently announced that it’s not offering FREE Google Apps for business customers. Individuals can still get Google Apps for free, but not businesses. At only $50 per year, per person, it’s worth it.
Of course Microsoft Office 365, Zoho, Hyper Office, Podio and a few others are also in this online collaboration space as well!
Having said all of this, there are SURELY some great, free, tools that your business can use – NutShell Mail (social media notification), Dlvr.it (social media management) and many other services are all free. They’re free and supported with advertising or supported with selling you fee based services. I’m not against free, I just don’t want you to fee you should ONLY use free. Sometimes, it’s best to PAY for a higher level of support and service.