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10 Best Databases for Small Businesses

The Best Databases for Small Businesses

by Snehal Naik
10 Best Databases for Small Businesses
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Introduction

A huge misconception lingering in the small business world is that only big businesses can benefit from databases. Many small businesses struggle with limited funding and have to constantly choose where to invest for better returns. Business management experts have reported that most enterprising small business owners seldom employ additional personnel. They rely on spreadsheets, databases, and other automation technology to manage and process the data produced by their businesses. In this blog, let’s look at the 10 best databases for small businesses.  

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Why Do Small Businesses Need Databases?

It is not uncommon to see small businesses managing with spreadsheets. Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets have tools to record and sort huge volumes of numerical data. However, spreadsheets have limitations. You can handle numbers easily with spreadsheets but other data like words and images becomes a struggle. In contrast, databases are built specifically for storing and retrieving different types of data. 

Here are the top reasons why small businesses invest in databases: 

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Segmenting Target Audience

Small businesses have limited marketing budgets, so it is important to plan marketing campaigns meticulously. For example, suppose a small jewelry business that wants to sell budget wedding rings.  A well-managed database will help small businesses get accurate insights into customers’ buying patterns, interests, location, age, and other data. With this information, the jewelry business owner can run targeted marketing campaigns. Using a database to run its marketing will help the small business get a better ROI. 

Increasing Cashflow

The number one problem for small businesses is too many competitors. The more the competitors, the tougher the fight to get a bigger market share and increased brand awareness. Many small businesses put their capital in stock, which can lead to failure in making cash available during a crisis if the stocks don’t sell. Creating a database allows small businesses to deal with stocks efficiently. In addition, databases also offer insights into the products that have been stuck on your shelves or in the warehouse for far too long. 

Automating Tasks

As mentioned before, small businesses have limited employees, and it would be unwise to pay those workers for doing repetitive tasks. Innovation drives small businesses, and it makes sense to utilize employee skill sets for such complex tasks. Databases, such as a point-of-sale system, help in speeding up inventory management while making it accurate. Similarly, repetitive emailing tasks and new employee onboarding and training can also be managed via databases.  

Managing Customer Data

Every small business starts in a cozy corner of one’s home where the business owner plans and manages the business with a diary and a pen But what about product returns, order mix ups, incorrect billing, delayed delivery, lost shipment, and more hiccups like these? Even if a business uses spreadsheets to track all this, there’s the possibility of entering data in the wrong field or deleting a field altogether. Alternatively, a well-equipped database has clearly labeled fields and error detection software to make small business operations easier. Databases help employees filter and sort information quickly and more accurately.  

Ensuring Data Security

Losing data from spreadsheets or physical records can have crippling effects on a small business. Apart from being efficient, databases are more secure than other systems for storing data. Multi-factor authentication, end-to-end encryption, segmentation, limited lateral movement, and controlled access to data are a few methods used by databases. These are highly effective security practices that ensure that small businesses don’t suffer because of data theft or loss.  

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The 10 Best Databases for Small Businesses

ClickUp

G2 Rating: 4.7 (9,417 reviews)  

It is a database software system used to create dynamic databases. ClickUp is an all-in-one productivity platform that lets small business teams work using tasks, Docs, Chat, Goals, Whiteboards, and more. It comes in handy for team collaboration and brainstorming sessions and can also be used to plan and process docs for product design 

ClickUp Pricing

  • Free Forever (Best for personal use) 
  • Unlimited (Best for small teams): $7/month 
  • Business (Best for mid-sized teams): $12/month 
  • Enterprise (Best for many large teams): Visit Clickup 

ClickUp Pros

  • User-friendly interface  
  • Separate workspaces with privacy functions  
  • Integration with other systems for automation 
  • Hierarchical arrangement of projects and tasks 

ClickUp Cons

  • UI/UX can be simplified for less clutter 
  • Steep learning curve for non-digital users 
  • Time-tracker reports difficult to follow 
  • Mobile App needs improvement

Oracle Database

G2 Rating: Rating: 4.3 (915 reviews) 

As a small business database, Oracle Database offers advanced security across its reliable and robust tools. It handles structured data in a way that offers valuable insights that help small businesses with strategic decision-making. 

Oracle Database Pricing

Custom pricing

Oracle Database Pros

  • Easy to retrieve complex data using SQL queries 
  • Security against unauthorized access 
  • Easy to install on Windows 
  • Data recovery set up easy to use 

Oracle Database Cons

  • No support for unstructured data 
  • Licensing cost expensive  
  • No built-in database migrations 
  • Large data sizes lower performance

SQL Connector for JIRA

Jira Software

G2 Rating: NA

It is a tool that makes Jira more efficient by integrating directly with SQL databases like MySQL and Oracle. The SQL Connector for Jira is a great choice for small businesses that want optimized project management within the Jira ecosystem.

SQL Connector for JIRA Pricing

Depends on users (Free for first 10 users) 

SQL Connector for JIRA Pros

  • Allows seamless data flow between Jira and SQL databases 
  • Simplifies data connection and export 
  • Offers unlimited data sources across all Jira projects

SQL Connector for JIRA Cons

  • Not versatile for other systems 
  • Requires technical expertise to set up and manage 

PostgreSQL

PostgreSQl

G2 Rating: 4.4 (621 reviews) 

It is an object-relational database system known for its performance and reliability. It has a set of comprehensive features that adapt to SQL extensively. PostgreSQL is open-source and offers scalable solutions to small business owners. It is known globally for its built-in and extendible security features. 

PostgreSQL Pricing

Free

PostgreSQL Pros

  • Supports complex data types and optimization 
  • Offers a database that handles transactional DDL  
  • Provides code comments to understand processes better 
  • Offers many parameters that can be adjusted according to measurements 

PostgreSQL Cons

  • Managed by many opensource communities and hence, does not come with a warranty 
  • Users may experience backup recovery challenges and some performance issues 

QuickBase

G2 Rating: 4.5 (985 reviews) 

It is a platform that allows users to centralize work operations in one place. This cloud-based platform helps small businesses build workflows, web apps, and applications easily.

QuickBase Pricing

  • Free Trial (for 30 days) 
  • Team ($35 per month) 
  • Business ($55 per month) 
  • Enterprise (Custom pricing) 

QuickBase Pros

  • Easy integration of data with other applications 
  • Maintenance and updates transparent 
  • Allows report generation with real-time data 
  • Supportive community

QuickBase Cons

  • Inconsistent navigation across pages within the platform  
  • Poor UI compared to other platforms  
  • Mobile app needs improvement  
  • Pipeline divisions lack options 

Amazon Aurora

G2 Rating: 4.5 (304 reviews) 

It is a MySQL and PostgreSQL-compatible relational database that offers simplicity and cost-effectiveness to small businesses. 

Amazon Aurora Pricing

Visit AWS for pricing

Amazon Aurora Pros

  • Easy to set up and huge cluster size 
  • Great compatibility with other sites 
  • Low latency and high availability  
  • Instances can be connected quickly without data loss

Amazon Aurora Cons

  • Third-party product compatibility needs to improve  
  • Cross-region replication can be simplified 
  • Could have more training and examples  
  • Needs more integration with AWS services 

Google Cloud SQL

Cloud SQL

G2 Rating: 4.5 (315 reviews) 

It is a fully-managed relational database service for MySQL, PostgreSQL, and SQL Server. Google Cloud SQL offers rich extension collections, configuration flags, and developer ecosystems. 

Google Cloud SQL Pricing

Depends on the configurations requested

Google Cloud SQL Pros

  • Available in many geographical locations and regions with zero downtime 
  • Reliable and responsive for high-latency applications 
  • Easy to scale and maintain 
  • Offers high-speed data transfers 

Google Cloud SQL Cons

  • Caching and indexing data need improvement 
  • Dashboard section could offer better customized 
  • Does not have a desktop management application 
  • Should offer better Integration with other BI Tools 

Microsoft SQL Server

SQL Server

G2 Rating: 4.4 (2,185 reviews) 

It is a relational database management system and is one of the easiest to use when it comes to processing Big Data. Microsoft SQL Server’s advanced analytics capabilities enable small businesses to store and host large volumes of data and discover deep insights. 

Microsoft SQL Server Pricing

  • Express and Developer (free versions) 
  • Web (See your hosting partner for pricing) 
  • Standard (starts at $230) 
  • Enterprise ($15,123) 

Microsoft SQL Server Pros

  • Has many free options for small applications and businesses  
  • Easy to install and back up 
  • Handles large data and supports intensive workloads 
  • Secure and versatile with administrative tasks 

Microsoft SQL Server Cons

  • Requires SQL expertise to fix performance issues 
  • Poor backward compatibility for higher versions 
  • SQL Server license costs high for advanced editions 

Azure SQL Database

G2 Rating: 4.5 (286 reviews) 

It is a relational database-as-a service that uses the Microsoft SQL Server Engine. Azure SQL Database is a high-performance, reliable, and secure database that helps small businesses build data-driven applications and websites in many programming languages. 

Azure SQL Database Pricing

Available on request  

Azure SQL Database Pros

  • Cost-effective solution for cloud DB hosting 
  • Offers easy connections with all apps 
  • Automatically handles updates and availability 
  • Offers high speed and minimum downtime

Azure SQL Database Cons

  • Does not offer all features of on-premises SQL Server Instances 
  • UI wizard for migration SQL server can be user friendly 
  • High data volumes could have better processing 
  • Supports only one Latin Collation choice 

CockroachDB

G2 Rating: 4.2 (21 reviews) 

It is a distributed SQL database that offers high availability for transaction heavy (OLTP) workloads. CockroachDB is a distributed SQL database that is easy to scale and control over data placement. 

CockroachDB Pricing

  • Serverless (From $0 / month) 
  • Dedicated (From $295 / month) 
  • Self-hosted (Pricing upon request) 

CockroachDB Pros

  • Offers great operational simplicity 
  • Automatically replicates data 
  • Allows users to easily redirect CDC traffic to the desired storage solution 
  • Supports automatic balancing of data even with additional nodes 

CockroachDB Cons

  • Complex setup compared to other databases 
  • Imposes a limit of 16MiB on the data input for a single statement 
  • Some queries in applications can cause production outages 
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What Should Small Businesses Look for in Database Software?

67% of small business owners in the United States are optimistic about projected increased revenue in 2024. Databases offer scalable solutions to small businesses looking for cost-effective options. Data integrity is seamlessly supported in databases through features such as referential integrity constraints, data validation rules, and transaction management. With data integrity, small businesses can ensure consistency and accuracy in the stored data and reduce the risk of errors and duplication in spreadsheets. In addition, databases also have features that help small businesses comply with regulatory requirements, industry standards, and data privacy laws. In conclusion, databases help small businesses lay the foundation for implementing advanced analytics, business intelligence, and data-driven decision-making strategies. If you are a developer looking for opportunities as a database expert, sign up with Olibr now to learn more. 

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FAQs

Databases help small businesses store, organize, and manage all kinds of data in a cost-effective way.

Many SQL databases are free to use. However, based on the features and customizations required, you might have to bear monthly/annual costs.  

Yes, it is an open-source software that can be downloaded by anyone and used for free.

MySQL is a good option as it supports large data sets, multiple operating systems, and programming languages like PHP, PERL, C, C++, and JAVA. 

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