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The Cloud Computing Guide for Small Business: A blog on cloud computing in general

Updated: Sep 12, 2022



Scaling your business has never been this cheap. Back in the day if you decided to

scale your business, it posed a lot of obstacles and things that any response will give

a lot of thought to, the amount of risk it involved only made individuals skeptical

about their product. With cloud computing existing these days, it has made life for

business owners easy with giving them options to store any amount of data

requiring a very small subscription fee.

Most cloud computing services fall into five categories:

1) Software as a service (SaaS)

2) Platform as a service (PaaS)

3) Infrastructure as a service (IaaS)

4) Anything/Everything as a service (XaaS)

5) Function as a Service (FaaS)

Cloud Computing has a lot of applications and can be used for storing data mainly

but is very helpful for other things as well.

The phrase Cloud computing, is a blanket term for different types of cloud services,

such as

- Cloud storage: These services store and back up your files for regular access.

Files can also be shared and synced across devices.

- Cloud backup: Cloud backup is designed to serve as protection against

experiences like a server crash, cyberattack or other data loss.

- Software as a service (SaaS): SaaS solutions use the web to provide a service.

Examples of SaaS application include Office 365, Google Apps, QuickBooks

Online and Salesforce. SaaS solutions may also be called platform as a service.

- Cloud hosting: These solutions facilitate multiple types of information sharing,

such as email services, application hosting, web-based phone systems and

data storage.

In other words, including web hosting and file storage, a cloud solution can handle

numerous business-related tasks.


As a small business, what are it’s advantages?


There are many benefits in using Cloud computing for a small business, for example

it saves time and money while boosting productivity, and collaboration and

promoting innovation.

Both small and midsize businesses can benefit cloud computing solutions. If you’re

still not convinced here are five additional benefits


Extremely accessible data


Cloud computing stores data on the internet, rather than storing the information on

your computer or office server. Therefore, information is accessible from anywhere

with any compatible device. That’s to say, from a central web-based hub, information

is available to anyone with internet and the proper credentials access from any

location.


Maintains consistency between users


Collaboration is key when multiple workers are working on the same digital file. The

most up-to-date version is required to keep the team informed. Most importantly,

with cloud computing the individual team members can access the most up-to-date

version of files from wherever they are because all cloud-hosted files are stored in the

same central location. As a result, data is automatically synced between all devices.


Allows for remote programs


Cloud computing allows users to access all types of files and applications as though

they were in the office. And since businesses rely on specialized software normally

found on company computers in the office, cloud computing makes it easy to set up

the office at the kitchen table. That’s to say, the barrier of entry is removed for

employees to use programs where they are physically, whether at home, on the road

or onsite, easily.


Easy data backup

At any time really, catastrophic data loss can happen. It generally occurs from natural

disasters, power surges, or hardware failure. Unfortunately, within the same year as

the data loss, research has found that affected companies are at an increased risk of

bankruptcy.


So, business owners have peace of mind that important files are safe even if

hardware fails. But only if they store their important data in the cloud.

Cost-efficient


Small businesses often have small budgets and cloud computing can definitely-

save- money. A physical sever is initially an expensive outlay, then equipment


requires maintenance, warranty, time, expertise and money. All the while they can be

prone to downtime. However, a cloud computing provider stores data for you

without all the downsides. Cloud services are often a monthly expense, making

budgeting easier. But it’s a manageable and predictable expense and in contrast to a

physical server, costs much less overall, in general.

So, cloud computing helps small businesses operate cost efficiently, more effectively

and easily by allowing remote access.


What types of cloud services do businesses use?


Cloud-computing has a wide range of services, such as accounting software,

customer service tools and remote desktop hosting. Categorized into three groups,

these services include: infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS)

and software as a service (SaaS).


Infrastructure as a service

In-house web hosting servers, the physical hardware, are replace by IaaS. IaaS helps

businesses take advantage of a range of configurations to handle different workload

needs, by providing things like virtual servers or virtual machines. In this categories,

two of the key players are Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.


Platform as a service

Software developers are given access through this cloud service, to cloud-based tools

like APIs, gateway software or web portals. Popular solutions in this category are

services like Salesforce’s Lightning, the Google App Engine and AWS’ Elastic

Beanstalk.


Software as a service

SaaS applications let workers collaborate on projects, download important files and

work directly on specialized computer programs. Basically, SaaS gives users access to

software over the internet. All accessible through computers, or mobile devices with

an internet connection. Services like Microsoft Office 365 or Google Workspace are

well known in this category.


Certainly, most cloud services are categorized infrastructure as a service (IaaS),

platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS).

Certainly now you can see for yourself that these services are extremely useful and is

a lot beneficial for all these services.


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