21 Free Software Resources

Here are 21 free software resources to help you run your internet business. In some cases you’ll find free resources do as good of a job or better than the paid programs, but that is not always the case. For example I do prefer Dreamweaver to Kompozer or any of the free design programs. I also like Fireworks more than Gimp, but that could be because I’ve played with it so long.

Other programs such as Google’s Analytics and WordPress beat any paid solution you can find. So check each item out and decide for yourself if it’s worth what it costs (even Freehas a cost in its learning curve and any opportunity it may cost you against other programs).

Free Software #1: OpenOffice
http://www.openoffice.org

This is similar to Microsoft Office. It contains a word processor, database program, spreadsheet, presentation program, and drawing software. It can handle many of the tasks you need in your business and it can even open up Office documents.

Free Software #2: PrimoPDF
http://www.primopdf.com

PDF is the most recommended format for eBooks, and here’s how you create them for free. Actually if you do your homework, you can find several free PDF creating programs out there, but no need to list more than one here.

Free Software #3: Gimp
http://www.gimp.org

Edit graphics, photos, and more for Free. This is another free source program that often beats the paid solutions available. For free materials on how to use the program, go to:
http://www.gimp-savvy.com

Free Software #4: Gimpshop
http://plasticbugs.com/?page_id=294

This is a free add-on to make Gimp operate more like Photoshop. Many of the menus and other elements are very similar to Photoshop, so this becomes a nice alternative.

Free Software #5: Audacity
http://audacity.sourceforge.net

I’ve now used this program for 2 years. I love it…and recommend it as a very good solution for editing your audio files either for online use or for CDs you develop.

Free Software #5: CamStudio
http://www.swftools.com/tools-details.php?tool=8162413051

Record audio and video from your screen directly to flash. No question about it. I prefer Camtasia Studio over this free version as it has many more features, but Camtasia Studio also costs $300 after your trial is over. If that’s out of your budget, here’s your alternative.

Free Software #6: PowerBullet
http://www.powerbullet.com

Create slideshows, auto-running presentations, and more. Very nice finished product. You can output the finished presentation as Flash or executable. The executable format is nice for tutorials and software documentation.

Free Software #7: Gmail
http://www.gmail.com

A lot of people love Outlook or Eudora, and I was a diehard Eudora user for years. I now prefer Gmail. You can have it pick up email from all your addresses and set to reply from each address. My favorite part…since it’s web based I can use one computer at home and my laptop when I’m traveling without transferring anything over.

Free Software #8: Free Article Submission Software
http://www.uniquearticlemarketing.com

Steven Lohrenz modified the open source program phplist to develop a very nice article marketing solution. Build a list of publishers and then use this software to submit unique articles to each one. Plus you can set and forget your article submission for weeks at a time with its scheduling. It’s a little tough to install, but a very good program.

Free Software #9: Kompozer
http://kompozer.net

Kompozer is the more up-to-date version of the open source web design software Nvu. Create an attractive, professional-looking web site without needing to know HTML or web coding. I prefer Dreamweaver as I’ve used it for years, but this is a free program to help you get started.

Free Software #10: FileZilla
http://sourceforge.net/projects/filezilla/

Open source FTP client for Window’s computers. You’ll need this for uploading and downloading files, pages, videos, PDFs, and more to your website.

Free Software #11: Article Dashboard
http://www.articledashboard.com/download.htm

Run your own free article directory with this software. Let other submit their articles and content to your site. Very well done software and it’s free although you do have to sign up for their list.

Free Software #12: WordPress
http://www.wordpress.org

This is the most common software for running a blog. That’s what I’m using on this site and recommend to you. I don’t need to go over why you need a blog again here, do I?

Free Software #13: phpBB
http://www.phpbb.com

Easy to install discussion board/forum software. Many web hosts such the one I recommend make it a one click install. Build an even stronger community around your site with a forum.

Free Software #14: Teleconference Calls
http://www.totallyfreeconferencecalls.com

Not really software, but it belongs on this list anyway. Set-up your own conference call line with unlimited usage for up to 99 lines for free. Instant Conference is another company that does this for up to 150 lines.

Free Software #15: Skype
http://www.skype.com

I love Skype. In fact my primary business number on several of my sites is a Skype In number. This means I can have it accessed from anywhere in the world. I also use Skype to talk to my phone clients from around the world. And I’ve even been using it for several phone interviews. Try it out if you haven’t already.

Free Software #16: Survey Monkey

You probably noticed I ran a survey using this software on the blog a few weeks ago. You can run a small survey of up to 100 responses with a free account. If you’re going over 100 responses, it’s $19.95 a month. Definitely worth it to survey your prospects and customers to find out what they really want.

Free Software #17: Google Analytics
http://www.google.com/analytics/

Google Analytics is installed on almost all of my websites (and it should be on all of them). Simply add their code to the bottom of each of your pages and watch them track everything for your site. You can even set “goals” for your site such as subscriptions or sales by adding the code to your thank you pages. Check on your conversion rates from your traffic this way. This is the basics of tracking your traffic at your site. Install it now.

Free Software #18: Google Optimizer
http://services.google.com/websiteoptimizer/

This is the 3rd tool from Google on the list. Anyone who has a Google Adwords account has access to this free split testing or multivariate testing solution. Set-up multiple test options such as your headline, photo, intro paragraph, price, and guarantee. Then let their optimizer test your page and put together the best performing page for you.

Free Software #19: eFax
https://www.efax.com/en/efax/twa/signupFree?rqcp=1

I don’t use a fax very often. Those are one of those old tools or something people used to use before email I think. But once in a while I need to fax something out like a contract or a client wants to fax me over something. My fax number is from eFax. You can fax and receive faxes right from your computer.

Free Software #20: osTicket
http://osticket.com

Set up your own support ticket system to handle any customer inquiries. Email is unreliable and a little harder for a team to track. There are several free support ticket options available. osTicket is one of the good ones.

Free Software #21: AVG
http://free.grisoft.com/

This is virus protection software. If you work online a lot, you will be exposed to viruses. Protect your computer with their free version or their paid version. I’ve found their software puts a lighter load on your processing power than most of the other options out there.

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