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Summary:

It’s time to get a firm grasp of what Web apps or SaaS’s on autopay on the business credit card because it is getting to be too easy to charge these things.

Before I fell asleep last night, I started thinking about what I’m spending on Web applications. I take advantage of the free levels of apps whenever I can, however, in some cases, I have to give in and pay for the services.

Don’t get me wrong – I don’t have buyer’s remorse, but I do think I need to get a firm grasp of what Web apps or SaaS’s I have on autopay on my business credit card because it is getting to be too easy to charge these things.

Here is the list of Web apps I’ve been paying for and why I pay for them:

  • Basecamp – $24/month – to keep track of communications and files with clients.
  • FreshBooks – $24/month – to manage client invoicing.
  • Typepad – $89.50/year for three blogs (about $7.45/month) – to develop three of my many blogs.
  • Constant Contact – $15/month – to send out my occasional e-newsletter.
  • Cafepress – $6.95/month – to sell Second Life swag.
  • LibSyn- $5/month – to host my Cybergrrl Oh podcast about Second Life.
  • SpinVox- $9.99/month – to convert my voicemail messages into texts and emails. (My service in the U.S. is actually through UReach.
  • MeetUp – $72/6 months ($12/month) – to host several Meetup groups.

Total Fees – $104.39 per month or $1,252.68 per year

I began thinking that I should pay more attention to these payments. If the app is really valuable to my business, maybe I should consider paying for a year’s subscription in advance. Often, an annual subscription is discounted so I could save some money.

Then again, it might just be negligible. CafePress, for example, comes out to be $5/month for an annual subscription which would save me $23 for the year. Well, the theory sounded good when I was thinking about it. Still, if I were to subscribe to many more apps and sites, maybe the savings would become more significant.

Sites like Freshbooks and Basecamp don’t offer an annual fee. They use a pay-as-you-go model without committing you to a long term contract. Freshbooks does offer a lump sum payment where you can opt to pay for a number of months in advance but without any discount.

What are you paying on a monthly basis for Web apps and sites? Which ones and what do they do for you?

  1. Opposite sides of the coin here

    WordPress – I used to pay $15/year for this until I started hosting it myself (I like controlling the installation)
    MailChimp – $15/month for newsletters to clients
    Ronin – $9/month for invoicing clients
    Highrise – again, for managing clients.

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  2. Perhaps your next blog post could be about those FREE services you’ve managed to find useful.

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  3. Funny you should mention that coachchic! Back in March, I did just that: http://webworkerdaily.com/2008/03/11/how-to-be-a-productive-cheapskate/

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  4. I’m using…
    Unfuddle for software project management: $9/month
    Backpack for keeping track of misc. notes, to-dos, and other stuff: $5/month (grandfathered plan…no longer available)
    I Want Sandy for task reminders: Free

    I’m very happy with Unfuddle. I like the 37Signals products, but some of them are getting kind of pricey.

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  5. Jott Pro – $12.95 per month — I pay because I like the longer time for recording notes — a premium upgrade. I’m going to upgrade Evernote, partly because I think the service is terrific and want to support them and partly because I keeping so much info on Evernote, I’m going to need more monthly bandwidth.

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  6. I pay for wrike, mobileme, and mozy. Generally I like to buy software as opposed to SaaS, mostly because I like to have total ownership and control over my data.

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  7. That $15/month for newsletters seems like a lot. I’ve been happy with CampaignMonitor: you only pay when you send out campaigns (I think it’s $5 + 1cent per user for each campaign, i.e. not much).

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  8. I don’t pay a dime for the apps that I use at http://webapps.ifthensoft.com. They are free for your iPhone or iPod Touch.

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  9. Use open source..it takes a little while to setup but it’s worth saving the money. Try free alternatives like http://invoicejournal.com instead of freshbooks. :-)

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  10. invoicejournal.com is not open source. for free/open source wen based invoicing give Simple Invoices http://www.simpleinvoices.org a go – free to download and install on your own server

    Cheers

    Justin

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