The Year of the Consumerization of Buying Enterprise Software – Discover, Try, Buy – with the Wisdom of Crowds
In the 1990’s there was a lack of freely available product information and the only way to access and try an enterprise product was through the sales division of that company. The world has changed and the internet has made:
- Information on a product freely available
- A product download freely available
- Advice on that product freely available
- The opinions of masses of users freely available
The credit crunch is forcing companies to look for value – not just in the cost of software but in the way they evaluate software. Today, to discover a product you go to Google. To get opinion and information you rely on the wisdom of crowds. People are turning away from “the complexity machine” and rewarding simplicity, value and transparency. Tools such as Google trends show in real-time market trends. Masses of blogs offer up-to-date information. Ranking and access allows good information to rise to the top. This is what has driven the success of Wikipedia vs. Encyclopedia Britannica.
Prediction for 2009: Enterprise software acquisition will be consumerized. Companies will “Search” the web, trusted blogs and forums, “Try” the software via download or in the cloud, and ‘Buy” if they like it, typically through a subscription model.
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