Submitted by Gaurav K on
What is your reaction when someone mentions cloud? Are you interested to learn more about it and how it can benefit your business or simply look the other way? There seems to be two types of business owners that resist the cloud pull – those that know little about it and those that are simply not interested to learn more.
Truth to be told small – businesses need to get serious about the cloud. And once they research cloud services and options they are most likely to find that those solutions will save their business a whole lot of time and money. In short SMBs need to stop fearing the cloud and invest some time in finding out how cloud servers can actually benefit them and their businesses.
Are you, like so many business owners, asking yourself if you should choose a cloud server? Here is a short list of reasons why SMBs are afraid of the cloud; this list also reflects why that fear shouldn’t exist. This quick read will provide you with better understanding of cloud infrastructure and how it can help your business.
This is not surprising as there are plenty of people that have some troubles grasping what cloud looks like and where it is. In essence, the cloud can be anywhere your data is stored. The cloud is not one specific location where businesses login to access its data.
Storing your data in the cloud actually means that your data sits in the data center that your cloud provider runs. When you subscribe to a cloud service you rent the space on a server rack and your provider takes care of the rest. Meaning that you no longer have to worry about purchasing, storing and maintaining computer hardware and software in your office.
As your data is stored remotely you can access it anytime, from anywhere, on a computer or mobile device. That way you can spend more time focusing on your business.
This is a completely understandable concern, as cloud providers often talk about the cloud infrastructure but for end users it can all be rather complicated to grasp. Luckily there is no reason to be alarmed, as setting up a cloud server is quite easy, as cloud providers designed them that way.
Majority of web portals are extremely user friendly and you can provision a virtual machine with very little effort. Providers also offer clear instructions which will lead you through the process of creating your own high performance server in a few simple steps.
On the other hand, if you require additional information, providers offer plenty of step-by-step videos and webinars that will walk you through the process in detail.
In case you are still a bit apprehensive find a managed service provider that will set up the whole thing for you. Cloud providers offer clients a wide range of services such as remote monitoring, management and technical support. These managed services can be part of an Infrastructure-as-a-Service, or IaaS. With this type of service, you, in essence get your own dedicated team of engineers on-call for things like technical support, data migration and security updates.
Another valid concern but let’s face it, if you are writing an important email to your client and your internet connection goes down and if your email servers are run in-house you are stuck waiting for your IT team to figure out what went wrong.
But if this situation happened and you are running your email server in the cloud even if your Internet connection is down your servers are still running, and all you have to do is find an alternative internet connection and access your email.
The same goes for all the others servers and processes they run. Reputable cloud providers invest heavily in sophisticated systems and redundant infrastructure to make sure your workloads are always up and accessible. That is the reason why they provide their customers with service level agreements (SLAs) that guarantee their servers are running 99.9% of the time or more.
There is no business too small for the cloud, even those that have only one server in the office can benefit from the cloud. To start with the fact that your in-house server does not have built in redundancy or high performance that can match the cloud server. If something goes wrong you might end up losing all your business data and outsourcing your hardware. When you pay your fee to the provider you no longer have to worry about updates, installation or maintaining the hardware.
It also means that you no longer have to make huge cash investment. Businesses who choose cloud servers can also make more money. SMBs who use cloud solutions rightfully expect their sales to increase, and for a very simple reason, with cloud solutions they have more time and resources to focus on their business. It makes more business sense to invest time and resources pursuing new clients and marketing your work instead of managing hardware. Therefore there is no business too small for a cloud server.
Every business is rightfully concerned about the security of their data, but the simple fact is that your data is more at risk on your on-premises server than it would be in the provider’s data center. With cloud infrastructure you are relying on a power grid that is more robust than anything you could build yourself. There are a number of other problems that come with on-premises solutions that can be avoided with cloud servers. Some of the common issues are backup, hardware damage ( due to the on-premises conditions) irregular maintenance or upgrades. In all honesty most businesses have better things to do than upgrade software licenses, when you subscribe to a cloud service your provider takes care of all of that.
True cloud is relatively new but it is here to stay. Over the past decade the cloud technology has been continually improving and many business owners are running out of excuses to ignore it.
As previously stated, the cloud infrastructure is safer and more reliable than running your own hardware in your office. Just ask yourself if small businesses who have embraced the cloud would be comfortable going back to an on-premises solution with its higher costs, lower reliability and increased workloads for their IT staff.
Successful business owners say that if you want to compete, you have to innovate and cloud computing is the perfect tool to do just that. Although previously mentioned, there is no harm in repeating that by allowing the cloud provider to maintain and support your infrastructure, you will have more time and resources to focus on your business.
This is yet another common concern, however it is also an unfounded one. Although you cannot see your cloud infrastructure it doesn’t mean you have no control over what is going on there.
Your applications and data are still accessible, and just a few clicks away. All you need to do is login to the control panel and access your server.
In many ways using a control panel is more transparent, as you can use it to provision servers and manage your resources. And the best part is that you are only paying for resources you actually use.
From previous paragraphs you have seen that many common concerns that small business owners have in regards to the cloud servers are unfounded. Cloud servers not only reduce IT costs, they free the rest of your resources and let you focus on what really matters, your business. Reputable cloud providers such as averthost will provide you cloud servers that are easy to maintain, scalable, capable to meet various requirements and above all cost effective.