REMODELING’s resident technology expert, Joe Stoddard, regularly produces lists of free or low-cost software for remodelers. In a presentation at the Remodeling|Deck|JLC Show in Baltimore last October, Stoddard gave the scoop on several tools geared toward sales and marketing.
According to Stoddard, if you’re a startup or extremely small, these might do the trick. Likewise, if you’re starting a project and want low-cost software to minimize expenses, these might also work. But ultimately, as your business grows, odds are that you’ll want to move to the older, more robust, more expensive systems.
It’s important to note that anytime you’re using a free service, there’s some sort of cost extracted, Stoddard says. In the case of Google and other companies, it’s that they’re aggregating and selling your data to marketing services and manufacturers.
Additionally, these services are here today, but could be gone tomorrow. Get what value out of them that you can, because there’s a chance that a larger company will buy them and either shelve them or incorporate them into their own product. The good news is that it doesn’t take long to implement these services. Don’t take these as recommendations as much as suggestions. Evaluate them in your own business and see how they’ll work.