Cloud technology and cloud computer are among the trendiest buzzwords in the business world today, but a closer look at what cloud computing can do for your small business will reveal that this is not a passing fad. Many larger corporations have already made the transition to cloud computing, which allows your team members to share files, applications and more in a remote environment. As beneficial as cloud computing is for larger businesses, many of these same benefits can apply to your own small business. In fact, these are some of the primary reasons why it may make sense for your business to start taking advantage of cloud computing benefits soon. 1. Financial Savings When you think about taking advantage of technology, you may see dollar signs. It is true that many software programs, technological resources and more can cost a small fortune to purchase and to use regularly, but cloud computing can actually save your small business money. Consider that the rates for cloud computing services are affordable and scalable. Rather than pay for a lot of storage space that your growing business does not yet need, you simply pay for the amount of storage space that is used. Furthermore, you also can save money by eliminating the need to pay for software and hardware, as well as the overhead of installing and maintaining those items in-house. For example, turning off your server can reduce power consumption, free up usable space in your office, reduce IT service costs and more. There is no need to pay for new equipment going forward as your current equipment becomes obsolete. Cloud computing also usually comes with phone support, and it may come with guaranteed uptime. Your service provider assumes the costs for upgrades, maintenance and more. 2. Improved Flexibility When your team’s files are stored in a secure location on a server in your office, they generally have limited access to those files when they are not physically located in the office. Your employees may need to email files back and forth to each other, store files on a removable thumb drive and take other steps when they need remote access to the files. Keep in mind that there may be security concerns with some of these methods. Through cloud storage solutions, your employees can easily access files from any location and from any device with an Internet connection. This is ideal when you or your employees need to work from home or when you are traveling. You can reasonably expect improved productivity and efficiency as a result of this benefit. 3. Protected Data With your current data storage system, your data may be exposed to physical theft and damage. Cyber threats, such as malware, viruses and hacking, are also serious concerns. Power outages and human errors can also affect data security. Even when you have backed up your data, these threats continue to be serious concerns. Through cloud-based services, you will enjoy the benefits of improved data security. Your cloud service provider will actively protect your data through encryption methods, anti-virus solutions and more. In addition to reducing the risk of data loss through these threats, keep in mind that your cloud service provider also helps you to remain in compliance with PCI, HIPAA and other related regulations. You can see that cloud-based storage is an excellent solution to improve data security. 4. Scalability Your small business may have minimal or limited needs for data storage, mobility and more at this time. However, as your business grows, your demands and needs will increase dramatically. One of the great things about using cloud-based services is that they are scalable based on your current needs. Consider that growth does not always occur linearly. For example, you may have a huge and sudden increase in bandwidth demand, and cloud-based solutions can accommodate all of these unexpected needs. Flexibility to scale up or to scale down services is available through cloud services. This ensures that all of your small business’s needs are met while also keeping costs within reason. Because your business has this flexibility, it is at a strategic advantage compared to your competitors who are not yet working in the cloud. 5. Cloud Technology is an Eco-Friendly Solution When you address your data storage needs on-site, you increase your energy costs, take up space that could otherwise be used more efficiently and require the use of periodically upgraded equipment. It can be challenging for a small business to be more sustainable with this type of intensive demand on-site. On the other hand, cloud services collectively meet your needs while also meeting the needs of many other small business just like yours. This essentially conserves resources and energy so that there is less of a negative impact on the environment. In addition, because cloud services are scalable, you will only be using the precise amount of resources that are needed at any one time. Essentially, cloud services enable you to reduce your business’s carbon footprint. Wrapping Up Transitioning to cloud-based services can sound complicated at first glance, but it actually is rather straightforward in many cases. You simply locate the cloud service provider that you want to use for your current needs, and the service provider will usually walk you through the migration process. With how easy it is to make this transition and with the considerable benefits that you can enjoy by doing so, it makes sense to get started today.