One, two, three – Export data from Zoho Invoice to Zoho Sheet

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Yes, three easy steps are all it takes to export your data from Zoho Invoice to Zoho Sheet. You can export and view all of your invoices, quotes, contacts, customers and items in Zoho Sheet. I am sure most of you would be using this feature already, exploring it for the benefit of others-

Let’s say you want to export and view all your invoices in Zoho Sheet, all you have to do is-

1. Select the “Invoices” tab.
2. Click on the “Export Invoices” link at the top.
3. Click on the “View” link in the Spreadsheet/CSV/TSV format.

That’s it! All your invoices will be exported and will be shown in a new window in Zoho Sheet. Now you can play with it as any other sheet document.

Hope you find this feature useful. We will be happy to hear your comments.

Just like Zoho Sheet, we will also be supporting Google Sheet shortly.

Happy invoicing.

Mashup with External Data in Zoho Sheet

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Zoho Sheet has this “Link External Data” functionality, which can be used to mashup with data on the web. It can sync your Zoho spreadsheet with data in public CSV files, HTML tables and RSS feeds. Zoho Sheet will basically fetch data periodically from the configured URL and update the spreadsheet automatically. You can then analyze on the external data by applying formulas or drawing charts. You can also publish / embed the resultant chart or a specific range or the whole spreadsheet. It gives you ample possibilities to mashup data from the web. A word of caution: While fetching data periodically from external websites, especially HTML pages, make sure you agree to the terms and conditions of the website.

Here is a short presentation which walks you through the various steps involved in configuring External Data in Zoho Sheet. It takes an example of automatic import of data from a public Zoho Creator view. The same can be done on a private Zoho Creator view by enabling private permalinks in Zoho Creator.

(view the presentation in full screen for better clarity)

Are you using this feature already? If so, let us know how you are using it.

Support for pre paid taxes in Zoho Invoice

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Sometime back one of our beloved customer had asked us to support “ritenuta d’acconto” in Zoho Invoice.  Yes, you read it right!  “ritenuta d’acconto” in Italian stands for tax that is pre-paid by the seller.

In some countries (especially Italy) it is a common practice for the sellers to pre-pay the tax.  Say for example (I am using the same example posted by our customer) a $1000 consultancy made by a professional would have a +20% VAT on its price and a -20% “ritenuta d’acconto” (a pre-tax paid by the seller) on its price.  The total would amount to $1000.  The law however requires both the tax and the pre-paid tax be shown on the invoices.

Now you can do that!  Just add the tax as is it and add the pre-paid tax as a negative tax.  Shown below is a snap of invoice that I had created for the above example.

Pre-paid Tax Invoice

You can see the original request here.

Hope this feature will come handy for our other customers also.  Give this a try and let us know your comments.

Happy Invoicing

Office Alternatives

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InfoWorld did a good analysis of MS Office alternatives (Slideshow here). They picked couple of vendors from the cloud (Zoho and Google) and couple from the Open Source world (IBM and OpenOffice) and did some analysis to see if they stand any chance against MS Office. Full article is available here. Here is the summary.

InfoWorld Office Alternatives

Glad to see Zoho lead the pack (along with IBM) with our current apps.

Bottom Line:
If you’re ready to embrace the SaaS future, then Zoho could be the productivity suite you’ve been waiting for. Zoho can provide both personal productivity and business back-end applications, and with Google Gears, you can keep working on documents even if you can’t find the Internet. Zoho is the only suite here that you could easily use to run a complete business. It’s also the only one that can run virtually all the Excel macros you might have developed

The good news is, the applications are improving at a very rapid pace. If you have noticed, its been a while that we rolled out a new app. The focus lately has been more on integration between apps and enhancements to the existing ones. In the longer term, we think cloud based productivity suites can go far beyond desktop software. We’ll see this happen over the next year or two.

While InfoWorld looked at Word Processor, Spreadsheet and Presentation apps, the productivity suite goes beyond these three (Wiki, Email etc are others). Also, you’ll need more apps to run your business than a productivity suite. In the bigger picture, we are trying to build a suite of apps to run your business. As we often say, we want to be your IT Department.

Thanks Curtis for the analysis.

Update: ComputerWorld did similar analysis here.

Swisscom Selects Zoho

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We are delighted that Swisscom (incumbent telco in Switzerland) has chosen Zoho for a six month pilot for its Zoho Business Suite which is now available on their Software-as-a-Service portal Teamnet.

Zoho and Swisscom have teamed up to create a custom version of Zoho Business, with Zoho Writer, Sheet, Show, Notebook and Meeting now available to its 300,000 business customers. Even though Swisscom is the incumbent telco operator in Switzerland, it is taking a bold approach by extending its offerings to the SaaS space.

Increasingly, Service Providers are looking to add value on their existing networks and have started to include online applications like Zoho to their portfolio of services. In the past, one would not turn to the telephone company for productivity applications, but this is changing with the wider adoption of SaaS in the marketplace. We are glad that Swisscom is taking a lead in this regard and will keep you posted on other developments and partnerships as this trend picks up momentum in coming months.

“The goal of the pilot is to provide our business customers with a value added web offering they can evaluate as part of a turnkey solution from their service provider. Zoho is an ideal partner that combines a wide and very innovative range of applications as well as a very solid engineering team to deliver the capability we wanted.” said Michael Gmuer, Head Business Process Optimization of Swisscom.“.

Teamnet Integration

Zoho and its Alliance Partner Program offer service providers multiple paths to increase ARPU (average revenue per user), the holy grail that telcos seek to maximize by adding additional services to their existing infrastructure. The program offers partners a flexible means to bundle various Zoho services for both consumers and business users.

While we are starting small with the Swisscom project, it is a significant step towards a broader Zoho distribution channel in Europe. This follows our recent partnership with Baihui in China.

Thank you Swisscom for choosing Zoho and for your investment in the project. We look forward to feedback from your users and to a successful venture together.

Zoho Writer Update : Issues related to Safari browser fixed

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We had a minor Zoho Writer update in which the issue of document content not getting displayed in Safari Browser on a Mac has been fixed. Users who have reported this particular issue in the past couple of days can try accessing Zoho Writer documents in their Safari browser and the content should come up fine for editing in the Writer editor.

Zoho Writer provides limited support for Safari browser as of now and hence some of the feature may behave inconsistently in it. We suggest Mac Users to access Zoho Writer on Firefox 2.0+ browser versions for a better experience. Full support for Safari browser will be provided in our next series of updates. It’s in the works right now.

Format your Columns as you like in Zoho DB & Reports

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Zoho DB & Reports offers a wide range of data types (column types) to store your tabular data. So far, the options offered for formatting the data stored in these column types have been limited. We have addressed this in our latest update.

Zoho DB & Reports now offers a wide variety of formatting options for each data type. With these options you can choose how you would like to have your data displayed in the various reports created.

How to format a column?

  1. Select the table or tabular view in which the columns are to be formatted
  2. Right click on the column that is to be formatted
  3. Set the necessary formatting option in the dialog that pops up
  4. Click OK to apply the formatting changes

Immediately you will see the formatting options being applied over the column. Zoho DB & Reports also ensures to carry over this formatting set for a column across all the reports (chart, pivot, summary & tabular) created including this column.

Formatting options supported include Text Alignment, No. of Decimal places (for all numeric data types), Currency Symbol (for currency type), Negative Number Display (for currency type), Date display format and Include thousand separator (for all numeric data types).

Customize Chart Coloring:

In Zoho DB & Reports the colors used in charts have been system generated so far. With the latest update you can now change the colors used in a chart to suit your taste. Follow the below given simple steps to customize the color in a chart:

  1. Select the Chart whose colors are to be customized
  2. Click Edit Design and go to edit mode
  3. Click on any of the category colors listed in the legend (seen on the right side of the chart) to change the same.
  4. A color chooser will pop up
  5. Choose the color required
  6. Click Apply to apply the color Or Click on Use Default if you would like to revert to system generated colors.

Auto-recognizing currency data during Import:

Now Zoho DB & Reports has included the intelligence to auto-identify a data column as currency when you import it into Zoho DB & Reports. You do not have to manually set the data type of those columns as currency, which had been the case so far. The data could be in any of the accepted currency formats (with currency symbol or abbreviation eg., $, USD etc.,) of any country. Auto-recognition would be applied when you import data into Zoho DB & Reports from any of CSV or .XLS or HTML files

Hope you find the above features useful. As always do give it a try and let us know your comments.

Zoho Reports – Online Reporting & BI Service