As a small business owner, you may have jumped to the conclusion that only a big business will benefit from cloud computing. After all, there are plenty of examples of large businesses using cloud computing for file sharing, social networking, banking and online shopping, but few examples of small businesses who do. However, the reason for this discrepancy is not only because cloud computing is feasible for large-scale operations, but because there is actually not much public awareness of how cloud computing works. It is not a strange new phenomena that only geeks can understand.
Whether or not you understand the technical infrastructure of cloud computing makes little difference. Cloud computing is user-friendly. In fact, from the user’s point of view, the technology is invisible, running quietly in the background. All the technical details are handled by the cloud providers and no special skills are necessary. As a user working on your computer, you only need the software skills you already possess to get your work done.
How A Small Business Can Use The Cloud
As an example, let’s assume you want to start an online shop. Is this something that you could do on the cloud?
After you have chosen your niche, you can actually use cloud computing to launch your entire business. In fact, you could launch it far quicker and more efficiently than if you bought your own server and employed a team of IT professionals. It would be cheaper, too.
Using highly-sophisticated yet intuitive software provided by a cloud provider, you will not need design expertise or technical skills to build a fully-functioning store. In fact,this software can be so easy to use that instead of spending a week or more configuring your store, you could do it in a day.
Your eCommerce platform will allow you to take orders for either physical goods or digital products with your shopping cart. It will not only be easy to build your store, but it will be just as easy to manage it and gradually scale up your business.
Cloud service providers who offer an eCommerce platform will also outfit you with tools for merchandising and marketing, search engine optimization, and social media promotion. If there is ever a technical problem with your store, you will not need to hire an IT professional to troubleshoot it. The cloud provider will take care of all your software needs. They will take care of installation, patches, security, and glitches. They will even upgrade to new versions. If you have any questions about cloud computing, you can sometimes get quicker responses from providers by messaging them on Twitter.
5 Good Reasons to Head for the Clouds
1. The cloud will set you free. Cloud computing will support your desire to go into business for yourself. It will set you free in many ways, including allowing you to run your business from anywhere in the world. You will be able to access all your information on the cloud, whether you are sitting in an office or a coffee shop. Your business will no longer need to store its data on a laptop, desktop, or server. You can even run your business on your mobile device if you like. Since all your files will be hosted on the cloud provider’s infrastructure, all you will need is an Internet connection to use any app or review any data files.
2. The cloud will make you more productive. You can work when you like and where you like. You will also be able to use the latest software and collaborate with partners, employees, or customers with ease. There will be no need to send documents back and forth—because everyone will be able to look at the same document in real time.
3. The cloud will slash your business overheads. The cost of starting and running your own business is far cheaper online than it is offline. With the cloud, even the comparatively low cost of starting and running an online business will be lower. You will not even need to buy your buy your own software. By paying a reasonable monthly or annual fee, you will cover almost all the infrastructure costs associated with owning your own small business.
4. The cloud will work with your favorite services. If you don’t want to use any of the services provided by your cloud provider, but would rather source your own service, these can be integrated into your cloud account. For instance, you may have become used to the features of a particular email provider service and are reluctant to give up its features or migrate your entire customer base to your cloud account. You will find that many popular online services will be compatible with the cloud and easily integrated.
5. The cloud will make your business bullet-proof. Since your business no longer resides on local hard-drives or servers, a natural disaster to your office or theft of your hardware will not compromise it. Your cloud provider will even offer you anti-virus protection. In addition, you can also get third-party software for additional data security if you like.
Before starting your own small business or spending any more money on your existing small business infrastructure, consider using the cloud to run your business. You might find it more cost-effective and easier to run. This, of course, will translate to more profits.