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Don’t let the fact that the economy is in the toilet distract you from getting your business off the ground. There are effective ways to build serious momentum on a shoestring budget.Open source software and secondhand hardware will take your dollars farther than you might realise. Wait until your business is reliably generating revenue, then spring for the brand new top-shelf electronics you fantasize about.
Here are some pointers on where to go to get started.
You might think there's a stigma attached to using secondhand stuff, but in your business's embryonic stages you need to think about saving money. Why not pick up a slightly used computer for huge savings off the list price?
If you'd rather deal with a business than an individual, go for Amazon's Used and New store. Plenty of businesses operate through Amazon to sell their inventories of electronics and software. This means huge savings for you.
This has it all -- email, word processing, spreadsheets, and calendars. All of them can be shared between people and allow for realtime collaboration. Let Google be your entire IT department. At $50 per employee, it's certainly cheaper and probably more reliable.
Link: Google Apps
Evernote is your scrapbook that's accessible from anywhere. Use it to keep track of your ideas, pictures, or anything else you like across all platforms: iPhone, Android, desktop, and tablet. You'll never forget anything again.
This is an indispensable tool for the small retailer. It is open source point-of-sale software that operates exactly like POS software at major stores like Best Buy and Barnes & Noble, giving your retail location a more professional image.
This is a consolidated tool for managing task lists, updating calendars, and sharing information in general. There's no reason not to try it. The same software is used by major companies like Coca Cola, Men's Wearhouse, and H&R Block.
If you're in need of a customisable operating system that is fast and free, you're hard-pressed to do better than Ubuntu. It's a very user-friendly release of the popular Linux OS that's been made to be just about as approachable as possible.
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