As we start to wind down 2008 and move into 2009, I still hear the same question from clients who have implemented or want to implement SharePoint: do I have to buy product A to get certain functionality in SharePoint or can I use the out-of-the-box service? For better or worse, often the answer is that organizations may be better served by buying a 3rd party add-on to enhance out-of-the-box (or non-existent) functionality in SharePoint.
To be sure, Microsoft has created a very wide-ranging product here, but not every aspect of SharePoint is up-to-the-task of serving the enterprise. As such, a whole community of ISVs have surrounded the product with various bolt-on tools to either enhance either what SharePoint does natively or add missing functionality.
It is for this very reason that when we updated the latest SharePoint Report, we included critical reviews of more than twenty add-on tools.
So, if you're going to implement SharePoint, start planning for the inevitable 3rd party products that you will likely have to purchase as well. Whether it's a search add-on or a tool to assist in backups, you have quite a few choices.