Ever wondered just how much you can earn in a career working from home? The answer is millions of dollars - if you've got what it takes.
Essential Free Small Business Software
Having a home business, or work from home job, means that your PC will need to be packed with functionality to help facilitate day-to-day tasks.
Fortunately, there is plenty of great free software that can help you do everything from zipping and unzipping files, to reading Adobe documents, chatting and messaging people online and protecting yourself with anti-virus.
Bear in mind that, in many cases, online/cloud services now provide free accounts that do a better job than expensive software downloads (or hard copies bought from a store).
7-Zip is a free (no payment or registration required) utility that can archive and compress files and folders as well as unzip them using a range of formats - like Windows' .zip, and the superior .tar.gz, and it's own high compression .7z format.
Because 7-Zip can handle multiple compression algorithms its perfect for anyone who works on a windows PC but runs a website (which most likely runs on a Linux server).
Skype provides free online conversations and instant messaging, file sharing, video sharing, conference calling and VoIP to land-line calls.
If you're tired of paying phone bills then switch to Skype. Anyone who has earphones, a mic and an Internet connection can use Skype to make personal or business calls anywhere in the world for free.
Avast offers a free trial of their antivrius software for 30 days. After that time you can choose to extend your free usage period or upgrade to their full, paid protection plan.
I have been using Avast free antivirus for years and noted that on more than a few occasions they were ahead of the bigger names like Norton and Symantec (who I vowed never to use again because they are as bad as malware when trying to uninstall).
Thunderbird is a modern, easy to use email client that will have you sending and receiving email in no time on virtually any platform you can imagine - Windows, Mac, Linux, etc.
It comes with a wide range of features that you would expect from any top-of-the-line software, and is comparable to Microsoft Outlook. But, because Thunderbird is made by Mozilla, it is completely free for public use - no registration, and no fees.
OpenOffice is open source's answer to Microsoft Office, which used to be bundled free with Windows, but now costs a small fortune to install separately.
Obviously OpenOffice is doing something right because they have hit the not insubstantial number of one hundred million downloads to date. In many areas, OpenOffice actually offers better functionality than its paid competitors and you should have no trouble learning your way around it.
Adobe Reader is an essential free utility for reading (but not creating) PDF documents. PDF is a widespread document format that is common online (if you do any work online, you'll need a PDF reader).
If you need to create PDFs, make use of OpenOffice's Writer (the equivalent of Microsoft's WORD), which has a convenient export to PDF button that generates a PDF from your document.
Dropbox (Cloud sharing & storage)
Dropbox is a free, cloud based application that allows you to store, share and synchronize files online.
It replicates a specified folder on your own PC into a folder held in the cloud. This folder can then be shared with other people who can also view and change stuff. These changes then reflect on your own file system.
Super useful for collaborating or sharing documents with virtual employees and employers. Think along the lines of never losing your presentation, even when you lose the flash-drive it's stored on.
Chrome (Web browser)
Google's Chrome browser has risen to become the most dominant PC browser on the planet. It did this by being fast, and easy to use while rendering Webpages elegantly.
I personally use both Chrome and FireFox because I like to test Website design and development work on a variety of browsers, but I find that Chrome handles responsive design better, which is the clincher for me.
So there's my list of absolute must-have free software - stuff that I couldn't live without in the day to day running of my businesses.
What other free software do you use? Share your tip and suggestions in the comments below.
Having access to a great tool like Google Trends means that it is easy to keep an eye on how important brands and
Here are some great ideas that incorporate free stuff (products and services) in order to generate trust, improve revenue and grow your business.
Most consumers like getting free stuff (especially online consumers), so giving away a valuable free offering can help to drive traffic, generate buzz, earn trust, and make money.
This article will give you five great ideas for free product and service offerings that you can integrate into an existing organization or use to help grow a startup.
There's nothing worse than finding out your business website has been hacked and is being used to send out bulk emails, spam visitors, or spread malicious software.
If it hasn't happened to you, don't fall into the trap of thinking that this scenario is something that happens to other people. Spam hacks are absolutely rampant.
Fortunately, the business model of spammers requires them, more often than not, to automate their hacks to seek out vulnerable Web servers and sites, because they have to do things on a huge scale to turn a profit.
Use the best business software and services to help start and grow your company quickly and efficiently - with the least cost.
Organic search traffic from Google is so valuable that many businesses come to rely on it as their primary source of income.
And while it may seem that the sun will never set on high converting organic traffic from the search giant, you might want to think about what would happen to your enterprise if the flow dried up.
I've experienced both the frustration and despair of losing Google traffic to an unknown and unexplained penalty (only large, important businesses get the information they need to recover in a matter of days or weeks), but have also seen how other companies have thrived without Google entirely.
Bookkeeping, taxes, accounting, and a host of other financial and administrative tasks are vital to keep your small business running smoothly and profitably
Save money with smart spending habits that will lower costs and ultimately lead to bigger profits and higher earnings for your small business.
Genuine bloggers and businesses use high quality articles to build high page rankings in Google and generate plenty of valuable organic search traffic.
The problem is that the better the content, the more likely it is that others will duplicate, copy, or spin those articles and publish them on their own sites (without permission or attribution).
Most of the time this is not an issue because low quality, article spinning sites generally tend not to rank well in Google search results.
Think of the Internet economy as a farmer’s field full of little green plants. Each plant represents a business, and the stuff that makes them grow is traffic (just like rain makes real plants grow).
Now, imagine that in between the rain clouds and our fledgling plants, there is a huge funnel that collects the rain and pours it over the field. Let’s call this funnel Google.
Google’s job is to make sure that all the sprouts get a fair share of water (provided they are of good quality), and that any weeds that are harmful to the ecosystem aren’t watered. All day long Google funnels rain onto various different plants in order to help them grow.
Crowdfunding is a relatively novel way for startups and entrepreneurs to raise money to support their fledgling companies - and sometimes it actually works.
Recently I was fortunate enough to attend a meeting between my startup and one of the largest logistics companies in the country - so that we could pitch our new service.
The size of this client would almost be sufficient to reach sustainability and profitability in one go. Obviously landing a whale in your first pitch as a new startup is the ultimate dream come true, but it can be hard to turn it into reality.
The meeting went ok, but there were some hard lessons learned about how to pitch big corporate clients that my partners and I took away from the experience.