Small Businesses Benefit From Launch of Free Software Selection Tool

The time-consuming process of choosing business software just got easier for the world's 50+ million small businesses, with the beta launch of an online recommendation and comparison tool by SoftwareShortlist.com.

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A key difference with SoftwareShortlist is that it recommends software based on how relevant it is to your business.

Melbourne, Australia (PRWEB) February 16, 2009

Choosing the right business software has historically been a frustrating and time-consuming process for the world's 50+ million small businesses. But now there is a fresh alternative, with today's beta launch of SoftwareShortlist.com - a free, online service that recommends and compares small business software.

SoftwareShortlist helps small businesses select software through real-time recommendations, side-by-comparisons and detailed product information. By enabling decision makers to quickly find and compare relevant software, SoftwareShortlist saves significant time and money compared to traditional methods such as using software directories or manually reviewing each vendor's website.

"The old software directory model is flawed," said co-founder Xavier Russo. "Small business owners don't have the time or the inclination to review all available software. They need a short list of the best options for them, not a long list of everything on the market."

Research has shown that people struggle to make effective decisions when presented with excessive choice - and small business owners are no exception. The methodology used by SoftwareShortlist overcomes this problem by providing decision-makers with a manageable set of options to consider.

The sensitive issue of vendors paying for top placement on directories has also been tackled head-on by the new website, with SoftwareShortlist refusing to adopt what it says is a questionable practice. "The products which software directories display at the top of the list are not the best or the most relevant, just the ones which paid the most. That's simply not helpful to a prospective customer," said co-founder Craig Westcott. "A key difference with SoftwareShortlist is that it recommends software based on how relevant it is to your business."

SoftwareShortlist's patent-pending system uses an online assessment of each visitor's requirements to recommend a shortlist of software that best meets the needs of that specific business. The website also provides other information and tools to help decision makers compare and assess the shortlisted products.

At present, the new service is limited to a handful of software categories - such as timesheets for management consultants; and livestock recordkeeping software for farmers. This is expected to expand in coming months to cover a wider range of software categories, including specialist vertical niches.

"We aim to create a powerful tool which small businesses everywhere can use to find the right software, regardless of their industry, size or budget," said Westcott. "Today's beta launch represents an important step towards that goal."

About SoftwareShortlist
SoftwareShortlist.com helps small businesses compare, select and buy the right software. It is owned and operated by Trigora Pty Ltd, a private company based in Melbourne, Australia. Trigora was founded in early 2008 by Craig Westcott and Xavier Russo, and gratefully acknowledges the support of the Australian Government via the AusIndustry "Commercialising Emerging Technology" (COMET) program.

Notes to Editor:
(1) The European Union has 19 million non-financial firms (Eurostats), United States of America 25.5 million firms (US Census), and Australia 1.9 million firms (ABS). Add in Asian nations and the rest of the world, and the total number of businesses is likely to approach 60 million. With 95%+ of firms classified as small businesses by the respective government agency, the number of small businesses globally exceeds 50 million.
(2) For more on how excessive choice affects decision-making, a good starting point is to see the research published by psychologists Barry Schwartz and Sheena Iyengar.

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