Entrepreneurs seeking new software|
"The software industry, in some cases, has reached a tipping point where new features provide marginal value to small business users. While it is important to continue providing useful new features, it is equally important to improve ease-of-use, so users can get more value out of the products than they have been able to in the past," said Richard Carriere, general manager of office productivity at Corel. "Small businesses simply don't have the time or resources to worry about their technology it's incumbent on vendors to build products that help the bottom line, not hurt it."
Software buying advice - Tips for small business
In celebration of Small Business Week running from April 9-15, 2006, Corel offers the following seven days' worth of advice on buying software for small business:
• Corel software advice - Day 1: Research your purchase - It won't take long. Search for software online, chat with your local computer reseller, or simply go to software makers' websites. The web is the number one place customers visit for product information and software makers know it. They'll often have tools online that help you choose which software is best for your needs.
• Corel software advice - Day 2: Don't overcomplicate your life! Buy software that won't need a ton of training - Look for software that is designed to be easy to use. Look for a clean user interface and simple one-click tools, wizards and templates to help guide you through your projects. Sometimes training features, books or videos come included in the software. Software that's easy to use will save you stress and money since you won't need to purchase extra training or technical support when you find yourself in over your head in a complicated piece of software.
• Corel software advice - Day 3: Think twice about overly complicated software - Remember that many technology vendors develop software principally for enterprise customers - and you might well be paying for features or back-office technology that you don't really need. Determine what your needs are and buy software accordingly. If you need an office suite and email, but aren't planning to share files over a server with hundreds of other users, chances are you don't need a complicated, enterprise-oriented software package.
• Corel software advice - Day 4: Be your own help desk - Face it, when you have a problem with your PC, you don't want to wait around for an answer-you want it now. When buying software, check out the vendor's tech support policy. Do they offer free support online or by email? How much will telephone support cost? Can you get help from the store where you bought your software? If you buy software that's designed to be easy to use and that comes with some level of free support, you'll have most of the tools you need to handle most problems yourself.
• Corel software advice - Day 5: Look for high-quality software priced affordably - Small businesses are typically value conscious-and that's smart. But small business owners need to be just as smart in terms of the products they buy. Steer clear of free software that might be lacking in performance or support, and don't take a risk by running pirated software - if the price seems too good to be true, it probably is. Seek out affordable software from a trusted brand - and try it first! Most software companies now let you download free trial software, so you can try before you buy.
• Corel software advice - Day 6: Shop for Flexibility - Don't overspend on different software for different tasks. Look for software that allows you to accomplish a myriad of important business tasks from within one box. Customers have been buying office suites for years, and most makers of creative software now offer software the same way. Shop for the mix of software that you need and you'll save a bundle.
• Corel software advice - Day 7: If you have more than one machine, think about licensing - When software companies sell to larger businesses, they don't sell boxes - they sell licenses, and the customer benefits from much lower prices. If you're installing software on more than one or two PCs in your business, contact your software provider to enquire about licensing - you may be surprised at the savings. Also enquire about tech support or upgrade programs. Some software companies offer a lot of flexibility in terms of what a license purchase can include.
About Corel Corporation
Corel Corporation provides full-featured, easy-to-use productivity, graphics and digital imaging software that helps millions of people worldwide run their businesses and extend their productivity at work and at home. For more than twenty years, Corel's award winning portfolio has earned the loyalty of value-conscious consumers, small businesses, legal firms and government agencies with software that is easy to learn and use, feature rich, and priced to address the demands of those seeking more affordable, flexible software alternatives. With hundreds of industry awards for customer-focused innovation and design, Corel has established itself as a world leader in desktop software with flagship products including CorelDRAW Graphics Suite, Corel WordPerfect Office, Corel Paint Shop Pro, Corel Designer Technical Suite and Corel Painter. Headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, Corel distributes its products in over 75 countries.