This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

3 Best Overlooked Software Buys for 2011

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- If 2011 is anything like this year, competition in the Web-based office software market will reach a fever pitch. Not only are software heavies such as Microsoft (MSFT), Apple (AAPL) and Facebook crowding the market with small-business tools, dozens of smaller firms are plying their business efficiency products as well. Sites such as the Google (GOOG) Apps Marketplace now have more than 250 different applications a business can use to stay organized.

But therein lies the rub: With so many choices, many excellent business systems get overlooked. And many firms I deal with struggle to find which business software can work for them.

To give you the inside edge on the business apps that will be worth your time, here is my roundup of sleeper productivity software for the coming year.

May it be a happy, healthy and profitable one.

Apple iWork.com (Online service is free with $99 software)
Yes, Virginia, there really is a cool Apple product that does not get the media love it deserves. Case in point is the online version of Apple's iWork suite of office tools, branded as iWork.com. Keep in mind that the iWork tools Pages, Numbers and Keynote are nowhere near as robust as Microsoft's Word, Excel and PowerPoint when used on a PC. But the online versions of iWorks software is surprisingly handy. Also, iWorks.com supports PCs and Macs, making for darn seamless document collaboration. I found the comments features were excellent, and the iPad version of this software is probably the best office productivity tool for that device I know. For Mac users looking to get organized, iWork.com is about the finest holiday present you can give -- or get.

Concur Breeze (One or two users are free; three or more users is $8 per month)
In business, it is not what you make, it is what you spend. And managing your spending is a whole lot easier with Redmond, Wash.-based Concur (CNQR). The online expense management system does a very nice job tracking what you and your firm spends in terms of cash, credit cards and bank checks. I liked the clean online layout, powerful reporting tools and seamless Google Apps and credit card integration. Of course, like most online expense tools, the code does not integrate well with complex enterprise expense reporting tools. That means that with your big corporate clients, chances are you will be filing those expenses by hand. Still, if you're considering making 2011 the year to get your expenses organized ahead of tax season, give Concur Breeze a try.

eM Client (Basic tool is free, professional tool is a flat fee of $50 per user)
If you are finding Outlook's email and calendering tools are getting too expensive and complex, may I recommend eM Client? The application, free for basic users, specializes in supporting just about every email service on the planet -- and does it all easily. Simply go to the eM Client website, download the free software, enter some basic information and you are off and emailing. The design is also heavily reminiscent of Outlook, so users of that tool should be comfortable with eM Client. The bottom line: For little or no cost, eM Client offers a surprisingly nifty way to optimize your critical business emails for the coming year. It's a clever little tool.

>To submit a news tip, email: tips@thestreet.com.

RELATED STORIES:



Follow TheStreet.com on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.
This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
AAPL $126.44 0.00%
FB $87.28 0.00%
GOOG $523.40 0.00%
TSLA $280.02 0.00%
YHOO $39.38 0.00%

Markets

DOW 17,730.11 -27.80 -0.16%
S&P 500 2,076.78 -0.64 -0.03%
NASDAQ 5,009.2140 -3.9090 -0.08%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs