Open source software is Free and widely available for unlimited use. Most open source solutions on the market focus on mass-market applications such as word processors, spreadsheet programs, web servers and operating systems. Open Source Small Business Solutions aims to fill an important gap by creating a resource of information about open source solutions designed specifically for helping small businesses.
Discover the best open source software for your small business with our guide to alternatives to Microsoft Windows, Apple OS X and Google’s Chrome OS. Open source alternatives such as OpenBazaar are perfect for a small business that doesn’t want to be locked into one platform or online service, while UXPin is specifically designed for fast-growing startups that need to create and test new ideas quickly.
This is an integrated open source business software that includes modules for project management, billing, accounting, manufacturing, inventory management, purchasing and billing. All of these modules communicate with one another seamlessly to ensure easy information exchange.
- It makes ERP simple
- The interface looks much like Google Drive which means anyone can use it
- It is a web- based tool which makes it accessible on any device
- The download version needs to be installed via source code which can be a little bit intimidating
OFBiz is a Java-based multi-platform business package. It was developed by Apache Foundation. Its functionalities include accounting, CRM, enterprise, supply chain, and resource management.
The extensive online documentation and YouTube channel help the users get the best out of the software. Hence, it is a good choice for organizations with a small budget, or those that have customizability high on their priority list. It is compatible with any operating system that runs Java SDK, including Windows, Linux, OS X, and Unix.
Selling your stuff
Unless you’re using a third-party e-commerce site, you’ll want a convenient way for your customers to view and buy your wares. That’s where an online shopping cart comes in. One of the easiest shopping carts to get up and running is OpenCart. If OpenCart isn’t right for you, there’s always the venerable Zen Cart or PrestaShop.
It’s easy to think that everyone these days sells online, but there are still small businesses that sell physical goods in the physical world. They need a way to ring up purchases, whether in an actual store or at a makeshift stall in a market. A point of sale (POS) system isn’t just handy, it’s essential. If you’re looking for a good open source POS system, check out this list of eight applications from Opensource.com’s Jason Baker.
iDempiere is a community-run project that finds its roots in ADempiere and Compiere. It contains CRM, ERP, and supply chain management solutions. It is a continuation of the iDempiere code but now includes the OSGi standards. It can handle multiple languages, currencies, accounting formats, organizations, so it’s a good option for international organizations with different sites.
The features offered include accounting, materials management, marketing, procurement, and sales. It is also Java-based but additionally requires PostgreSQL or Oracle databases. It is therefore compatible with Windows, OS X, and Linux.
This program was featured on Opensource.com as one of the best open source business software of the year. It is built specifically for small and mid-sized companies and comes with multiple modules that include accounting, managing inventory, purchase sales and project management.
- It comes with numerous modules in one
- All the available modules integrate very well together
- The whole suite is very easy to use
- Some modules are only available when you buy a subscription
PrestaShop is a popular open-source eCommerce software option, due to its straightforward platform with many functionalities. It contains localization, marketing, product display, or export to eBay, taxes, and translation. Although the software is free to use, support and training are paid services.
This is an open source business software that is tailored to help small and mid-sized business keep track of invoices, contacts, invoice orders and payments. It comes with a very easy to use and clean user interface.
- It is use and comes with a lot of great modules that work very well together
- It has an online demo to help you test-drive before installation
- There are some modules that will only work with purchased add-ons
Magento Community Edition
The Magento offers an Enterprise edition, which is a paid version, while the Community Edition is the free option. A customer can build his website using the Community edition, and then hire a web development team to customize it to the business’ needs. The community behind Magento is large with 200,000 users, so much support is available. However, the Enterprise edition is much more robust.
This is an open source business software that is optimized for use on web applications. It offers a number of different features, each designed to help with data organization on your business. It is particularly useful when you have to keep track of large amounts of data and it is very easy to use.
- It comes with multiple granularity locking
- An online backup ensures the safety of your data
- It has GUI tools for drivers for developmental languages
- Comes with 24/7 support
- It doesn’t work with Apple systems
- It also doesn’t have a script debugger
This is a complete CRM suite offered by SuiteCRM. Its continually updated dashboard gives insight into the latest figures. This helps to have an understanding of the status of current projects, and the business’ cash flow. It unites customer service, marketing, and sales. The layout and format are customizable to suit all customer’s needs.
SuiteCRM is the open-source alternative to the popular SugarCRM and Salesforce. It offers most of the same features, besides Joomla integration.
If you are looking for a much more advanced database management tool, this open source software is the one to choose. It is used by some of the biggest tech businesses including Google, Facebook and Wikipedia. As you probably can already guess, it is primarily designed for business that need to keep track of large databases.
- It is highly scalable and easy to integrate with other services
- Offers real-time access
- It is missing an optimizer trace
- It may not be easy to use especially for beginners
As your business develops, you might want to scale back on the open source software (OSS) you use. But before you do, consider these costs and benefits of open source software. Benefits of open source software for small business include flexible licensing, usability, and less risk from vendor lock-in.