Check out 3 new surprising sites for your business!

Lemurs09

I continue to be surprised with some of the cool applications and sites that pop up… a lot of free stuff and generally pretty innovative!  From a business standpoint, free may not be the best way to go, but I think the developers are in a tough situation.  If you want people to find your stuff, try it out and talk about it, your best bet is to make it free and get it out to a lot of people.

So that’s what I’m doing here – talking about 3 interesting, useful and free sites that you should check out today.

Check out Soluto

The first surprising new site is the recent winner of the Tech Crunch Disrupt contest held this past May (it’s a Silicon Valley review of new technology related start-ups).

Israeli based Soluto is billed as Anti Frustration Software and targets users of Windows who are frustrated with how long it takes to boot up their computers (and why they bog down over time).

Soluto’s approach is an app that runs in the background of your computer during the start-up sequence and measures how long (and what) is running when you’re computer is chugging away.  Once you’ve done the initial load and analysis you can fine tune what runs, remove anything that’s not needed and delay other things that aren’t critical.

I saved about 40 seconds on my start-up (of a fairly new computer), but I can really see the value over time as things get loaded and added in over time – Soluto gives me a way to see what’s actually going on and a way to do something about it (and it’s free)!

Build some Rapportive

Over at Duct Tape Marketing this weekend, John Jantsch suggested a helpful app called Rapportive.  Rapportive works with Gmail and adds in Social Media background on who ever sent you email (into your Gmail inbox).

It has some of the same functionality that Xobni offers with Outlook (also a worthwhile free app that I’ve written about before).  Primarily a quick and easy shortcut to a lot of information on who ever you’re interacting with (links to Social Media profiles, etc.).  It also has the capability for you to record notes, giving you some simple CRM functionality as well.  Simple, but useful.

I believe the trend on this kind of functionality is only going to accelerate – at some point this will be built into all most applications and sites, but until then it would be silly not to take advantage of it now where ever you can.

Go to Market

Finally you should also check out the Google Apps Enterprise Marketplace.  I knew there was  a Google Apps marketplace out there (there’s another one focused on mobile devices similar to iTunes App Store), but I didn’t really know much about it.

It turns out there are hundreds (if not thousands) of free and paid apps available to be checked out at your leisure.  I quickly browsed through some of the accounting and finance apps and found Expensify (an app to help your company streamline expense reporting) which could help out a couple of my clients.

The Market is still evolving, you may or may not find anything useful right now – but keep looking!  This is another big up and coming trend.  Find applications based on what other users think, how well they work and how popular they are…for whatever problem you’re trying to solve.

What cool apps or sites have you discovered recently?  Share your thoughts in the comments below – I’d love to hear them.

Shawn Kinkade   Kansas City Business Coach

2 thoughts on “Check out 3 new surprising sites for your business!”

  1. rahulvohra says:

    Hey Shawn, this is Rahul from Rapportive. Thanks very much for mentioning us: we think we're a definite help for almost all businesses, and our users can look forward to plenty of exciting updates in the coming months and years 🙂

  2. skinkade says:

    Rahul – thanks for stopping by, I can see a lot of positives coming out of what you all are doing.

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