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3 Easy Steps to Start Your Advisor Blog

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Many of the insurance and financial advisors that I speak to on a regular basis find the task of blogging to be a very daunting and time consuming task. Blogging is one of the most effective ways to drive traffic and is also a critical sales and marketing tactic to connect with your audience. One of my favourite questions that I like to answer tends to be “How do I get started?”. It’s a great reflection of an advisor who’s ready to incorporate digital and content marketing into their practice and of someone who’s ready to do something different in an industry where blogging is not yet pervasive.

Here are 3 steps I commonly talk about to get started.

Step 1: Coming up with topics

If I sat you down in front of a typewriter and asked you to write a book and I didn’t give you a topic that would be pretty hard and you could potentially sit for a few hours and come up with nothing (maybe a title and an introduction). If I did the same thing and asked you to write a book about financial planning you might also come up with nothing after a few hours.

This analogy is often how I think advisors look at content writing. One critical success factor of content writing is the plan. Ok, the plan, what do I mean? Well, much like how you might put together a financial plan for your client, you would put together a plan for content writing. A plan helps to regulate the frequency at which you write and produce a tempo. It also helps take a lot of the guess work out of what to write about next. If I planned on saving up $1200 a contribution of $100 a month for the next 12 months, would arguably be easier than me thinking about the amount to save each month to reach my goal.

So, just how do you come up with the topics? Simple. Here are three questions to ask yourself:

  1. Do you meet with clients and prospects?
  2. Do your clients and prospects ask you questions?
  3. Do your clients and prospects ask you the same questions?

You probably answered ‘Yes’ to all three of those questions. Now, take the next 5-10 minutes and write down as many questions as you possibly can on a piece of paper and then move onto step 2. Write down the questions that come to mind first.

Step 2: Mine for Blogging Gold

Now that you have a list of questions we’re going to do a quick scan of each of your questions. The reason for this is that blogging effectively, involves writing about single topics as opposed to writing an essay. There will be a subset of the questions that you wrote down that might simply result in too large of a blog post. This is where we can dig for blogging gold because the questions you’ve already thought of, might themselves, break into other blog posts. So what do I mean by single topics? Well, it’s kind of analogous to how you might look at a book. An effective blog post would be equivalent to a single chapter while a not-so-effective blog post would be an entire book. Writing too many concepts into a single blog post can cause you to lose reader interest and also make it more difficult for you to complete a post. Here are some good and bad examples of titles that might lead you to write about more than one topic:

Good

  • What is a TFSA?
  • 3 keys to saving effectively for retirement
  • How to save for your next big vacation

Bad

  • Financial Planning 101
  • The INs and OUTs of an RRSP
  • How to choose a financial advisor

Now, take 10 minutes and look at your list of questions and for each topic, determine whether you can break the topic down into more than 1 mutually exclusive topic. For example, “What is a TFSA?” cannot instinctively be broken down into more than 1 mutually exclusive topic as everything points to the topic of a TFSA. “Financial Planning 101”, however, can be broken down into Tax, Retirement, Investments, etc., all of which are mutually exclusive topics. No need to think too long on each question as it should be instinctive and easy to identify the questions that can be broken out. Then move onto Step 3.

Step 3: Plan your Tempo and Topics

By now, you should have a pretty healthy list of questions to answer. The next step is to set up your tempo. How often will you decide to blog. There are definitely rules of thumb when it comes to blogging and in general, the more often you blog, the better your results. That being said, if you’re just getting started, setting up the frequency of your blogging is more important than setting up how much you will blog. Blogging once a week is arguably better than blogging once a month which would arguably be better than blogging once a quarter and so on. Choose the frequency that you feel you can handle. If the frequency you set becomes very manageable, increase that frequency. Remember to start small and then move up from there. Choose the easiest questions to answer first.

Take the next 5 minutes, look across your questions, and line your topics up to your frequency. For example, if you have 12 topics and have chosen to write monthly, that’s one blog post per month. Also, decide whether you will release your blog at the beginning or at the end of the month.

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At this stage you’ve completed a very critical step and are well on your way to becoming perceived as an expert in your area of expertise! With all of your single topics and questions set up, it should be a relatively straight forward exercise to answer the questions you’ve documented! A few key things to remember when you write is that blogging is not about perfection. You’re not designing a rocket to the moon. Obviously spelling mistakes and grammatical errors are unacceptable but outside of that, the world’s your oyster. Write in the way that you would have a conversation with a client or a prospect. Make your readers feel like you’re speaking directly to them.

Remember, your voice is unique. No other person in the world communicates like you. No other person has been exposed to the same experiences that you have.

What’s your greatest barrier to getting started with blogging?

 

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6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design Part 6): Not implementing responsive design

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Not implementing responsive design is mistake #5 in the 6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design.

A responsive design refers to a website that has been designed in a way that all of the content, images and structure of the site remain the same no matter what device you are on. So, when a visitor accesses your site from their desktop, they will see a full view of your site. If they were to switch to their iPhone, the site will adapt to fit on the smaller screen. Responsive design ensures that your website runs properly and looks great on any device.

With the increasing amount of Internet traffic coming from mobile devices, it has become clear that responsive design is no longer a trend, but a must for any website. Now, more then ever, consumers expect their online experience to be consistent no matter what device they are on.

Here are 3 good reasons why every website should be responsive:

Mobile Use Is Only Growing…

The world is going mobile and so are our websites. Worldwide, mobile traffic has doubled between 2012 and 2013.  Not only are people using their mobile for social networking, checking and sending email, and surfing the website, they are also making purchases from their devices.  By 2016, revenue from mobile content is predicted to reach $65 billion.

Your website is likely receiving a high portion of mobile users and given it isn’t responsive, nor has a mobile version, that’s a lot of visitors who are receiving sub-optimal experiences.  According to Hubspot, if a user lands on your website on their mobile and is frustrated or doesn’t see what they are looking for, there is a 61% change they will leave immediately and go to another website (most likely a competitor).

Google Loves Responsive Design

Google has recommended responsive design as the primary mobile configuration and has referred to it as the industries best practice. This configuration makes it easier for Google to crawl your pages, retrieve your content, and ultimately, rank your page.

Provides Great User Experience

Responsive design provides users with a better and faster user experience, and does a better job of converting visitors into customers. When a user has to wait for a page to load, there’s a high change they will leave your site before it opens on their mobile phones. Responsive design eliminates the need for site redirects, improving the overall speed of the site allowing users to get their information quickly.

Responsive design is one of the most effective ways to ensure every visitor has the best possible user experience. Responsive design is still an emerging practice so chances are your competitors have not yet jumped on the bandwagon leaving you a chance to gain a competitive edge. What are you waiting for?

We are almost at the end of the 6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design.  Stay tuned for the last pitfall coming soon.

Question: Is your website responsive? When on your mobile device, would you stay on a site and try to decipher and zoom in on small text, or would you move on to a site that adapted to your screen size?

 

Liferay Vs. SharePoint: Who is using these technologies?

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Portals continue to evolve as platforms gain new features that increasingly blur the boundaries between portals and areas such as content management. Customer experience, customer engagement, digital experience and marketing integration have been a large focus of portal platforms for the past couple of years as more and more enterprises have embarked on portal implementations. Today we will examine Liferay Vs. Sharepoint

Earlier this year, Gartner released its latest Magic Quadrant for horizontal portals. Microsoft SharePoint and Liferay were both named in the top 5 for leaders in horizontal portals.   But, who exactly is using Liferay and SharePoint and who are some of their top global customers? Below is a brief summary on the customers and industries using the Liferay and SharePoint platforms.

Liferay – who is using it?

Liferay is the leading Open Source portal server.  Many enterprises are using Liferay to build robust business solutions that deliver long-term value and results.  The company has seen a recent rapid growth in the past few years.  Liferay is an all-in-one enterprise portal with broad product capabilities that provide a user-friendly interface where you can centralize, share and collaborate.

Liferay has proven its real world performance globally with many clients across many diverse industries and business functions. It has been used in just about every industry around the world including automotive, education, government, healthcare, financial services, IT and Hi-Tech, media and entertainment and more.  It is primarily used for corporate websites, intranets and extranets but is highly scalable and easy to launch with many out of the box features.  Major organizations around the world choose Liferay for a wide variety of business functions beyond the traditional portal:

  • Intranet portals
  • Extranet portals
  • Content and Document Management
  • Web publishing and shared workspaces
  • Enterprise collaboration
  • Social networking
  • Enterprise portals and identify management

Liferay is growing year over year, and has over 150,000 community members, 5 million downloads, over 500 apps in Liferay Marketplace, and 650 employees.

Some of Liferay’s key customers include:

 

Liferay Clients

Learn more about their case studies and the enterprises using Liferay across industries and around the world.

SharePoint – who is using it?

SharePoint’s usage is widespread because of its complex collaboration structure. The platform allows you to develop your business collaboration solutions fast and effectively.  Similar to Liferay, SharePoint’s customers are spread globally across just about every industry including retail, education, transportation and more.

According to Microsoft, SharePoint is adding approximately 20,000 SharePoint users every day.  That is approximately 7.3 million new SharePoint users every year. Similar to Liferay, the majority of customers use SharePoint as an internal tool; intranet/extranets and enterprise content and document management.

Here are the 5 most common uses of SharePoint:

  • Intranet portals
  • Extranet portals
  • Enterprise content and document management
  • Public facing websites
  • Forms & workflow

Some of Sharepoint’s key customers include:

Sharepoint Clients

Check out some of SharePoint’s case studies here.

Which portal you choose depends entirely on your industry, and what tasks and objectives you are looking to accomplish.  In a previous article, we took a look at some Alternatives to SharePoint.

Question:  What portal technology are you using for your business?  Are you satisfied with it? If not, what frustrates you about your portal technology?  Share your experiences below. 

What is Google My Business?

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Getting your practice or business listed on Google My Business is a critical step that every advisor should consider to set yourself apart from your local competitors. It also helps provide a consistent user experience your audience receives when they are looking for you using Google. So, what is Google My Business?

Google My Business = Google Pages + Google Maps + Google Search

Google My Business is a service offered by Google that helps connect businesses and organizations to individuals. It provides a consistent user experience across all of Google’s key search related applications and across all devices like smartphones, tablets and desktops. Let’s look at each discreet component.

Google Search

You’re probably familiar with Google Search if you’ve ever tried to find something online. This is Google’s claim to fame and is still very much a primary revenue stream for them with the combination of Search and Adwords. The user experience you typically receive produces a combination of organic search results (highlighted in yellow below) and paid search results (highlighted in blue below). In this format, the search results provide you with some knowledge of what to expect for each search result. Paid search results, as the name suggests, require you to purchase that space, while the organic search results are free.

Example search result using Google Search

Example of a Google search result using “Financial Planning”

 

Google Maps

Then along came Google Maps, an application you’re also probably very familiar with if you’ve ever had to get directions to go somewhere. The ever familiar maps.google.com. Type in a search term and it visually presents little points on a map that it thinks matches your search term. However, going to www.google.com vs maps.google.com presents two very distinct experiences where one provides location context around the result.

Google maps search result

An example of a Google Maps search using “financial planning”

 

Google Pages

In November of 2011, Google launched Google Pages to help connect the online world with “businesses, organizations and other things that you care about” (Our history in depth, Google.com). When Google pages was first released, it attempted to match the same user experience as that of other social media technologies like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIN. It gave organizations the capability to provide their audience and publish quick and short updates such as promotions, events, etc. It also provided them with the ability to corporately brand and personalize the Google page and provide visitors with a user experience that replicated the brand as well as key pieces of information such as their website, address and other contact information (kind of like a business card).

Macy Google+ page

Example of a Google+ Page

 

Google My Business

Google My Business is effectively the combination of all 3 of these features where the setup process begins with creating a Google Page for your organization, company or practice. By setting up your Google Page and as a result, your listing, you provide Google with key pieces of your company information that Google can leverage when it presents your company via the three aforementioned components. Namely, Google Search, Maps and Pages. Individuals using Google to find you and your business will receive a fully integrated experience no matter what device they are using and no matter from where they are performing the search query. At Veriday, we have ourselves set up in Google My Business. We have a Google Page and when performing a search for our business on Google Maps and Google Search, you receive a more useful and consistent experience.

As you will notice in the example, Veriday’s Google+ page has clear branding as well as detailed information about their address, contact information and hours of operation all within the banner at the top of the page. Below that, are the updates, articles and useful things they share with their audience to encourage additional engagement. In the Google search result, it provides a dedicated area on the right hand side showing the map, logo and contact information using the information and other assets collected when setting up the Google+ page. On the mobile experience, it provides a more targeted experience to the user and assumes that because you are on mobile, you are either looking for location and/or contact details to call. Each of these user experiences are automatically published in all three mediums by simply creating a single profile using Google My Business.

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Are you using Google My Business? Have you tried setting up a Google+ page? Share your experience by commenting below!!

6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design Part 5: Failing to consider your URL structure

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Failing to consider your URL structure is mistake #5 in Hubspot’s 6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website Re(Design).

One of the most important search engine optimization techniques is using SEO-friendly URL structures to help the indexation of your website.  A good domain name is simple and short so that visitors can easily remember it. Search engines, like users, prefer URLs that make it easy to understand what your page content is all about.

From an SEO point of view, a site’s URL structure should be:

  • Straightforward: URLs with duplicate content should have recognized URLs specified for them; there should be no confusing redirects on the site. (Search Engine Journal, 2014)
  • Meaningful: URL names should have keywords in them. Avoid numbers and punctuation marks. (Search Engine Journal, 2014)
  • Emphasis on the right URLs: SEO-wise, not all URLs on a site are of equal importance as a rule. Some even should be concealed from the search engines. Ensure the pages that should be accessible to search engines are open. (Search Engine Journal, 2014)

Separate words in your URL with a hyphen, or an underscore?

Search engines treat hyphens and underscores differently from one another. Google has made it clear that you should always use a hyphen to separate words in your URLs. Google treats a hyphen as a word separator, but treats an underscore as a word joiner. So, for example tips_for_advisors (using underscores) would be understood as tipsforadvisors. Using tips-for-advisors (hyphens) search engines can  identify the different words and return them in various combinations (ex. tips for advisors, tips, advisors) Using hyphens is better for SEO, making it easier for search engines to identify what your page is about.

Keep your URLs short and simple. Your user prefers it, and so does search engines. When it comes to choosing a good URL – if it’s good for users, it will generally be good for search engines.

Question: What is the biggest challenge you face when it comes to your SEO strategy? Share with us below.

 

6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design Part 4: Failing to identify (and include) commonly searched keywords

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Failing to identify (and include) commonly searched keywords is mistake #4 in Hubspot’s 6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design.

Keyword research is one of the most important and valuable parts of doing SEO right. Keyword research is about identifying which keywords and phrases are being used, in search engines, by your potential customers to find the products/and or services that you are providing on your website. It is the most important step to drive targeted traffic to your site, and it will help you decipher what topics you should write about and what phrases you should use while writing. If done correctly, it provides a road a road map for building your website and developing content.

Hubspot has provided an exercise for how to establish a keyword list:

  1. Make a list of important topics based on what you know about your business and what topics you’d ideally like to rank for.
  2. Fill in those topic buckets with keywords and phrases that you think are important for your website to rank for in search engine results.
  3. Check to make sure you have a mix of short and long tail keywords in each bucket (great for long term goals and short term wins)
  4. Research related search terms (scroll to the bottom of Google’s results and you’ll notice some suggestions for searches related to your original search)

After completing these steps, you will have a list of keywords and phrases that will help you focus on the right content and topics for your website. Building your business website around your keyword research can provide leverage from which you can further build your SEO strategy to continuously improve your search engine ranking.

In short, researching commonly searched keywords before your website design is a crucial first step in the process for the following reasons:

  • Keyword research reveals your target market
  • Keyword research informs your content
  • Keyword research will inform how you write your content

Do you have your own methods and tricks to identifying your website’s keywords? We’d love to hear about them. Share your tips and tricks below or drop us a line if you have any questions about your next website project.

 

4 Secrets to Writing Effective Value Propositions for Financial Advisors

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As both a marketing and sales professional, one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to create and articulate in my career has been either my own personal or my company’s value proposition. It’s definitely not a feat to be underestimated and it is something that is often over engineered to a point that can be confusing to some readers. I reviewed many value propositions for financial advisors and provided advice and consulting to a number of advisors looking for more differentiation.

Typically, the value proposition lives on the home page of a website, your Twitter profile, LinkedIN company page, your company’s brochure and practically anywhere where you expect to acquire exposure to an audience who knows nothing about who you are or what you do. The primary goal of your value proposition should be to convert your reader. What do I mean by convert? Well, it means converting your reader from being a complete stranger to someone who is willing to take another step towards trusting you and eventually spending money with you (which is the ultimate goal). This could involve clicking on something else on your website, flipping the page of your brochure, scrolling down the rest of your Twitter feed, or reading an article that you either shared or published. These are all considered conversions.

With that goal in mind, here are 4 common areas I tend to talk about surrounding value propositions for financial advisors at the point when advisors are either creating it or considering re-writing it.

Is it relevant to your target audience?

Many value propositions for financial advisors tend to have too much of a focus on the actual advisor or firm. It’s important to describe who you are and what you do, but realistically, that comes at a later step. Keeping in mind the goal of capturing and enticing the reader just enough to convert, the first few words of your value proposition should contain some information as to how you help your reader solve problems. It’s always good to remember that your business exists because it helps solve your clients’ problems. Some questions you can ask yourself to help get you thinking of a reader focused solution statement:

  • What are the top 3 problems you are helping your clients’ solve?
  • If you left your clients tomorrow and never replaced you, what would happen to them in a month, 6 months or a year?

How does your audience benefit from using your products or services?

Another key component to your value proposition should contain one or more key benefits that you provide. A lot of people writing their value proposition statements for the first time tend to fall into the trap of writing about features vs. benefits. For example, the statement, “We provide families with sustainable investment strategies” is a features statement. A “sustainable investment strategy” is a service or an offering. It’s not quite a benefit in the context of the example I provided. How about this one? “We help families achieve financial freedom”. This is clearly more in the direction of a benefits statement. “Financial freedom” isn’t something you can offer “out of the box” but you can implement specific strategies that can help families achieve that goal. One exercise I like to use with my clients to help them with a benefits statement is a fill in the blanks exercise:

  • Fill In The Blanks: The greatest challenge I solve for my clients is __________. By solving this challenge they can __________.

Tip: After writing a benefits statement, ask yourself the question “Why?” until you get to a point where the answer to the question becomes almost philosophical. Let’s take the previous example:

  1. We provide families with sustainable investment strategies. Why?
  2. So they can save enough money. Why?
  3. So they can achieve financial freedom. Why?
  4. So they can live without worrying about debt. Why?
  5. So they can live happily ever after. <– philosophical point of achievement!

Can your audience easily understand your communication style?

There’s many reasons to use common language in such a key part of your marketing material. For websites, using common language will help with your search engine results. Why? Because if you’re using language that your clients or your target audience don’t commonly use, chances are, they won’t be using that language to located your website. The reasons why you would use common language from a marketing and writing standpoint is very analogous. The system and combinations of words we use is how we communicate with other people within our circles of influence. Using words that are not typically in your audience’s vernacular can cause you to lose their attention.

Length

As marketers, one key consideration of any attention grabbing content is our audience’s attention span which happens to be 8 seconds. Keeping your value proposition short and simple are key to a successful conversion.

If you’d like some feedback or help on your existing value proposition, drop me a line!

Question: What are some of the best or worst value propositions for financial advisors you’ve ever read online or seen in your daily life?

 

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6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design Part 3: Not doing an audit of your existing site

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Mistake #3 of Hubspot’s 6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design is Not doing an audit of your existing site.

If you are redesigning your website, make sure you take the time to examine your current site to see what is working and what is not. If it’s working, keep doing it. If it’s not, this is your chance to figure out where the opportunities lie to help your site rank better in search engines.

There are many reasons why you would conduct an audit of your existing site. Maybe you are not getting as much traffic as you hoped for. Or, maybe you are getting traffic but visitors don’t seem to be engaged in what you’re selling them. Perhaps your website is old and neglected and you need to identify what pages need to be totally revamped, or removed. Regardless of why you are redesigning your website, a properly conducted audit will help you to identify what content delivers better results and what content may be hurting your website. The audit will help you to establish how popular your content is and if it is meeting your visitor’s expectations. For example, a high bounce rate or low time spent on a website might indicate that visitors aren’t engaged with your content, and leave your site right away.

Below are some key metrics you may want to consider when auditing your website:

  • Number of visits/visitors/unique visitors
  • Bounce rate
  • Average time visitors spend on your site
  • How many new vs. returning visitors does the website achieve
  • Top performing keywords (in terms of rank, traffic, and lead generation)
  • Number of inbound linking domains
  • Total number of total pages indexed
  • Total number of pages that receive traffic
  • Top landing pages
  • Content review – do the main pages of the site have enough content? Which pages are receiving the most traffic? Which pages are visitors spending the most time on?

A website audit is the first step in the path to redesigning a website. This process will provide you with the insight and context you need to make informed design decisions. An audit is not necessarily about finding what is wrong with your site, but rather to find a list of things that can be changed to help make your site rank better in search engines.

Looking to redesign your website but aren’t sure where to start? That’s what we’re here for!

 

6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next Website (Re)Design Part 2: Not thinking about SEO from the start

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Let’s dig a little deeper into the first of Hubspot’s 6 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid During Your Next (Re)Design. In case you missed it, here is a refresher on What is SEO and why do I need it? One of the biggest mistakes you can make during a website redesign is not thinking about SEO from the start. Many people treat SEO and web design as though they are two separate entities. But, every good developer knows that you must connect both, from the beginning, in order to create an effective website.

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

SEO needs to be ingrained in your (re)design strategy from the very beginning. Throughout the process, keeping SEO in mind will allow you to create a site that meets your design and functionality needs, and also excels at SEO. A site designed with SEO in mind will be better indexed and ranked by search engines, which ultimately increases visitor traffic and revenue.

It is also important to understand who your clients and prospects are during the process because your website should be structured and written for them. Creating a website with your end users in mind, and combining web design practices with SEO practices will result in a win-win.

So, what aspects of my website should be developed with SEO in mind? The answer is simple. All aspects. The structure and design of your website, URL foundation, navigation structure, heading tags, the meta description, images, relevant keywords, organized and targeted content, internal and external links, social media integration…to name a few.

Many people are too focused on the look and design of their website.  This is important, but if you are not generating enough traffic to your site, then the design and usability doesn’t really matter much.  Don’t spend time and money to build a website that no one can find.

Still not sure whether the trials and tribulations of SEO are really worth it? Not sure how to infuse best SEO practices into your website (re)design? We’d love to help! Get in touch with us today!

Alternatives to SharePoint

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Collaboration is key for any business or operation.  In order to run a business in today’s economy, there is a need for collaborative technology.  Collaborative technology is the foundation for aligning business goals with technology, in order to facilitate effective communication and improve productivity.

SharePoint is a collaboration suite used by many professional services and firms. It is a family of software products developed by Microsoft that allows businesses to store, access and share information among members of their organization.  Although SharePoint offers many robust collaboration features, it certainly isn’t the best fit for every business.

There are a number of Sharepoint alternatives in the market today with similar collaboration functionalities.   Which alternative you choose depends entirely on what tasks and objectives you are looking to accomplish with your collaborative platform.  Let’s take a look at some solutions for alternatives to Sharepoint:

Alfresco

Alfresco is a robust and scalable content management platform that is built on open source technology.  Alfresco is designed to enhance business’s productivity and workflow, by focusing on collaboration.   The solution encompasses similar functionality as SharePoint, but at a much lesser cost.  This free platform enables organizations to collaborate more effectively across cloud, mobile, and on-premise environments while also interacting with team members through Alfresco’s miniature social environment.  The platform makes communication among different organizations simple using message boards, individual and group calendars and more.  Alfresco offers mobile app integration, making it easy to edit projects from anywhere, at any time.

Liferay

Liferay is the leading open source portal and social collaboration software.  When it comes to providing collaboration features to facilitate effective communication and improve productivity, Liferay is one of the leading technologies for businesses.  Liferay provides an easy-to-use interface that allows you to work collaboratively using the right tools for sharing knowledge and communicating.  With Liferay’s collaboration tools you are able to assign tasks, create meetings, share knowledge using built-in calendaring, task management, wikis, blogs and more. Unlike SharePoint, Liferay’s open source platform is built to ensure it can support and extend the application to grow with the business and brings collaboration into your daily routine without requiring extra steps.

Huddle

Huddle is a cloud-based enterprise collaboration and content management platform, which allows people to connect, share and work together easily.  It is designed to enable people to collaborate in Huddle’s cloud via their Microsoft Office tools.  Users can save files into their Huddle workspaces directly from Microsoft Office applications, with a Huggle comment stream alongside it.  Huddle supports mobile applications and allows employees to track project deadlines and completed tasks, reassign projects, and easily manage and exchange information or projects with others.

Collaboration Solutions Software (IBM)

Collaboration Solutions (formerly Lotus Notes) is IBM’s flagship product for enterprise collaboration and can be used to collaborate internal and external information.  IBM’s online communication tool offers immediate online collaboration with colleagues by means of instant messaging, web conferencing, shared content libraries and social networking capabilities.

Google Apps

For smaller-scale organizations with multiple locations, Google is another free alternative to Sharepoint that provides many capabilities for collaborating.  Google Apps offer simple and efficient ways of collaborating, allowing businesses to organize day-to-day schedules, projects and files securely.  Google Apps allows employees to simultaneously and securely work on Word documents, Excel spreadsheets and PowerPoint.

There are hundreds of collaboration tools available in the market place.  It can be tough to determine which one is best for your particular needs. Choosing the best collaboration tool for your organization depends on your business goals and strategies.

Still not sure which solution is best for your business?  We can help to empower your organization to work better together by improving the way they collaborate and communicate. Contact us today to discover the untapped power of collaboration solutions.