February 18, 2014
Everyone's talking about cloud storage these days. For the uninitiated, that means hiring a cloud hosting company to store your digital files and applications off-site rather than on computer servers located in your offices. The advantages to using the cloud are many. In fact, if you aren't using the cloud for your data storage and application hosting needs, you're missing out on at least these five things:
#1 – Reduced Hardware Investment
One primary advantage to using off-site, cloud storage is that it frees you from needing to purchase, maintain, house and support a bank of servers to store your customer files and company data. If your company runs a website, then you know that you need to have many more times the capacity of your average daily usage to be able to handle occasional peak periods. Using cloud storage frees you from that excess. Plus, with cloud storage, you don't have to spend as much money to house several servers, cool the room they occupy or hire personnel to maintain them.
#2 - Enhanced Security
Because a cloud hosting company handles many accounts, they are able to afford a level of security that is typically unattainable for small and medium-sized businesses. For example, our data center is secured by round the clock surveillance. Imagine what it would cost to implement and employ a team to monitor your on premise data center. Though it may seem counter-intuitive at first, cloud storage is actually more secure than maintaining your systems in house.
Cloud service providers also offer back-up, redundant storage and disaster recovery plans to add an additional layer of security to your data stored in the cloud.
#3 - Mobile Access
With cloud storage, you can access your files and data on any computer or mobile device, from anywhere. Plus multiple people can view and work on a single file at the same time or if you work on one device and switch to another, you can pick up right where you left off. This is especially useful for companies that have a mobile sales force or who allow employees to work remotely.
#4 - Flexibility And Scalability
Cloud storage gives a company much more flexibility with both how it accesses its data and how quickly it can grow or scale back to accommodate changing business cycles. With the cloud, you no longer have to pay for storage you aren't using just to be able to accommodate peak periods. Plus, if your company signs a large new account, you can ramp up your data storage capabilities much more quickly than if you had to purchase and install servers and reassign your IT personnel to implement the new expanded system.
#5 - The Opportunity to Support Your "Green" Initiative
By using cloud storage, you not only save money on your energy bills, but you save energy for the planet, not to mention the energy used to create, ship and support your servers. Increasingly, customers are looking to buy from companies that are making an effort to conserve energy in their day-to-day operations. Using cloud storage can be promoted in your marketing campaigns as one more thing you're doing to further your green initiative.
If you're thinking that cloud storage is only for large companies, it's time to re-evaluate what the cloud has to offer your small or medium-sized business. You could be missing quite a lot by waiting to embrace cloud technology. Plus, cloud storage is merely the beginning of cloud computing capabilities offered by cloud service providers. Consult with a Marco cloud service specialist to determine how your business could benefit from these capabilities.