Knowing that cloud storage is an important solution to your data requirements is only half the battle. How do you know what is the best cloud storage for your small business?
Cloud Storage Explained
No matter which cloud storage provider you’re considering, the technology operates similarly. Essentially, cloud storage allows a user to save data and files off-site and access them through the internet or a private network connection. It’s a perfect solution for small businesses, especially as cloud storage is cost-effective and scalable, requiring no hard drives or storage networks on the premise while being able to store far more data.
There are many cloud storage providers, each with its own features and competitive advantages directed at different kinds of businesses, so it can be difficult to know which is the best cloud storage for your small business.
Choosing the Best Cloud Storage for your Small Business
Here, we lay out what you as a small business should look for when choosing a cloud storage solution. This list has less to do with the different features of cloud storage providers and is more directed at questions to ask yourself before choosing a cloud storage solution.
What Does the Business Need?
The first thing you need to outline is the needs of your business. For example: how many people will need access, how much data will you need to store immediately and in the future, and what is your budget. Once you have this list of needs created, you’re prepared to narrow down the choices of cloud storage providers and find the best cloud storage for your small business.
What are the Storage Limits?
The first key to finding a better cloud storage solution for your business is looking at the storage limits of each cloud storage provider. The limits vary according to the plan you purchase, so a cloud storage provider may have different pricing levels to allow scalability. Don’t assume you need lot of storage if your business doesn’t currently require it, you can always adjust the plan as needed later on.
What Devices Does the Business Use?
One of the central advantages of cloud storage is being able to access it from anywhere and with any device, which means you need to be sure that the devices your business uses are supported by mobile and external hard drives if you use them. Also, look to see if the storage you’re interested in can be accessed by multiple devices or has any limits on the number of users or devices that can access data at a single time. It isn’t uncommon for cloud storage packages to have a minimum number of users as well.
If you plan on syncing with your cloud drive storage, make sure this is an option in the package and note any features where you can share data with external parties that don’t require them to register first. A good example of this is Google Drive. Another option is integrations like those used in Microsoft Office, where file versions are tracked and edits can be shown visually.
Data security is a common reason for small businesses to not make the jump to cloud hosting services and data storage, but it’s a misplaced concern. Most cloud storage providers take security extremely seriously as their business depends upon the safety of their customer’s data. When looking for the best cloud storage for your company, it’s important to look at the security level you need and whether the cloud storage company you’re considering encrypts data in transit and and upon delivery. This feature protects your data by making sure it is not accessible in the event an unauthorized user attempts to gain access to it. Another feature to look for is the login process and whether the cloud requires two-factor authentication.
What is the Best Cloud Storage?
The best cloud storage for a small business is one that satisfies the needs of the company and while it can be a struggle to settle on a cloud storage solution, there are companies like Ontech Systems that can help you with this. We at Ontech Systems have a passion for working with small businesses and we have provided IT solutions throughout Milwaukee and Southeast Wisconsin since 2004.
Not only can we help with your IT infrastructure, but we can also help determine what the best cloud storage solution is for you. We encourage you to explore how we can help and guide you to the appropriate storage solution for your company.