In my recent review of the enterprise bookmarking and tagging systems it seemed there was a glaring, underserved niche in the market just waiting for a smart vendor to address. The niche was the small enterprise, say 50 to 500 users, who have many of the same security requirements of large enterprises, but require the affordability and ease-of-use of consumer-oriented, enterprise bookmarking and tagging solutions.
Yes, I know there's always Scuttle and for some that will work. But there's always a need for pre-packaged, easy-to-install technology solutions.
Those enterprise bookmarking systems available today aim to sell a suite of Web 2.0 applications for your business when just one bookmarking will do As such they price their products out of reach for many. Lotus Sametime is considered to be too large of investment for many small enterprises at $50 per user and the $110 per user (IBM Lotus Connections and then just for the first year), $40,000 per CPU, or $64 per user (BEA Aqualogics) seem positively exorbitant for the smaller enterprise. Even Connectbeam's solution at $20 per user is costly.
Now it's true that all three vendors deliver value beyond just bookmarking and tagging including social networking and the like. It's also makes plenty of good business sense to target the existing customer-base and up-sell where possible. It's also true, though, that for many in IT deploying these Web 2.0 applications in the enterprise, gradually, is about the only way a deployment will be successful. Rolling out a full application suite is a a good means to end up with a lot of hype and little real usage.
Vendors aren't standing still. Cogenz today has a service priced at just $2 per user. And while services aren't likely to be be the preferred deployment method for enterprise bookmarking and tagging, the price is certainly right. Watch for Cogenz -- amongst others - to release low-cost on premise solutions in the fall that will help make enterprise bookmarking solutions for all a reality.
UPDATE Niall Cook, Cogenz CEO, points out that the $2 per user price was only in a case of 5,000 users. At 50 user, Cogenz would charge $180/month for its Workgroup edition and $1,070/month for equipping an installation of 500 users with the Enterprise version.