A database is used to store data. Storing business data in a database rather than on pieces of paper, Word documents or Excel spreadsheets can revolutionise your business.
Once company data is in a database it is much more straightforward to publish company information on a website, as well as provide all kinds of data-enabled services from online booking forms to order tracking, stock inventory and many other purposes.
There are many types of database available, but the most common are relational databases. These relational databases generally store data in tables, using columns of data with specific data types (such as text fields, date fields, images and other data).
Microsoft Access is arguably the most widely used database. It runs on the desktop Windows PC and is a part of the Microsoft Office Suite of desktop applications.
MySQL is a popular open source database. It is widely used to store data used by web applications built using PHP.