As another year comes to a close, we offer you a list of 2012’s top web-based tools for small businesses. While not all these start-ups launched in the last calendar year, 2012 was their year to rise above the rest.
Looking back on 2012

BlackLocus

WHAT the company does – Scours the web and evaluates your product pricing in real time compared to your competitors.
WHO is it for – Online retailers.
WHY are they unique – The software compares every item in your web catalog looking for opportunities for competitive price advantages.

Expensify

WHAT the company does – “Expense reports that don’t suck!”
WHO is it for – Any business with employees that travel on the company dime.
WHY are they unique – You can link Expensify directly to credit card or bank statements. And, when on the road, use the mobile app to track travel miles and snap quick pics of receipts.

Task Rabbit

WHAT the company does – Like eBay for assistants, post a task and local “task rabbits” will bid on tackling your task.
WHO is it for – REALLY small businesses (is it just you?)
WHY are they unique – Use them for anything from waiting in line on Black Friday to dropping off UPS packages to organizing imported online content.

SnapTag

WHAT the company does – Like barcodes and QR codes, SpyderLynk’s SnapTags coincide with free smartphone reader apps that use 2D codes to direct potential customers anywhere on the web.
WHO is it for – Small businesses who want to link hard copy marketing to their digital space.
WHY are they unique – Unlike barcodes and QR codes, SnapTags are subtle and circular, elegantly coinciding with company logos or photos–think magazine ads or even drink coasters.

StrangeLoop Networks

WHAT the company does – Optimizes how a website appears on different displays to increase speed and enhance viewer experience.
WHO is it for – Small businesses whose clients need instant, mobile access–restaurants, retail shops, automotive repair, etc.
WHY are they unique – Websites have to be more versatile than ever as your clients engage with your site via desktop, laptop, tablet and smartphone. StrangeLoop helps keep your site relevant, accessible and profit-driving.

Nimble

WHAT the company does – A new player in the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software space.
WHO is it for – Anyone in your small business that deals directly with clients.
WHY are they unique – One-upping other CRM software, Nimble will automatically identify contact’s social profiles pulling together Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, email, contacts and calendars onto one screen.

Slide Rocket

WHAT the company does – As Powerpoint’s cooler, younger nephew, Slide Rocket brings new life to presentation software.
WHO is it for – Sales, HR, Management, Training
WHY are they unique – Access your work from anywhere, including mobile, and share it with a simple URL or website embedding…no more giant email attachments. And you don’t have to start from scratch; import your old presentations directly from Powerpoint or Google Presentations.

Bravo Video

WHAT the company does – Create your own branded custom video online portal to collect live customer testimonials.
WHO is it for – Small businesses that provide services for other small businesses.
WHY are they unique – Credibility is crucial; let your very own customers spread the good word. Post the videos on a blog, Facebook, or your company’s website. There’s even an adjustable timer to keep everyone on point.

Demandbase

WHAT the company does – Identifies which company’s employees are most visiting your website and makes available a contact within that company.
WHO is it for – Business to business companies
WHY are they unique – Called “the iTunes of Customer Relationship Management”, Demandbase will sell you quality, meaningful B2B contacts for less than a couple dollars.

Here’s to 2012, and more importantly to an even more exciting 2013…as long as the Mayans weren’t right.