As a small or medium size business owner, costs and spending are large factors in many decisions. With that being said, where does cloud computing, cloud storage and other cloud services factor into a small or medium size business’s needs? For most small and medium businesses that existed over the last couple of years saw software usage be a very painful IT-supported action. SaaS is only one facet of small business and medium business that sees a benefit in the cloud. SaaS (software as a service) is the most useful and used example of cloud services that help small businesses with their bottom line.
Cloud storage is another option to small businesses and medium businesses when it comes to cloud services. Cloud hosting can be a move small businesses can make to alleviate costs when it comes time to upgrading your hosting account or dedicated server or VPN needs. PaaS (platform as a service) and IaaS (infrastructure as a service) are useful tools for SMBs that already have some type of infrastructure in place that they maintain at various levels. To understand how widespread cloud computing services from small business are, we are going to review a few to check out what they are, as well as how they can be used in your business.
FreshBooks boasts over 5 million online accounts that track and keep accounting records in the cloud.
BaseCamp is a, online application that has been around for years, which allows users across the globe to participate in online project management.
Office 365 is a fully cloud-based application that is basically the younger brother of Microsoft’s Office Suite of business products.
Small business cloud solutions offer a wide ability to provide cost-effective service, while also allowing SMBs to deploy those solutions in an easy and reliable way.
Editor’s Note: Helping startup entrepreneurs and small business owners introduce new web technologies such as cloud applications to their businesses is one of our biggest tasks as an IT outsourcing partner.
While there is certainly a market for MSP’s who solely want to help their clients save money by moving to the Cloud, any business based on cost-cutting alone is a precarious and fragile one. The true reason MSP’s should be advocating a move to the Cloud is not based on cost savings, but based on flexibility and increased features.
Helping a client move from traditional on-site server based email and file storage solution to a Cloud hosted solution does reduce maintenance costs for the client.
Migrating a client away from a traditional PABX to a Voice-Over-IP (VoIP) solution should not focus on reduced call costs (although this is typically a benefit) but instead on the fact that the clients staff can make and receive telephone calls from anywhere as though they were at their desk. The reduced cost of moving a client to a Cloud hosted email system should free up IT budget to finally invest in developing that electronic document management system that will save the business even more money in the long-term.
All of these cost-savings mean that the client has freed up budget to engage the IT Solution Provider to work on other projects that will provide even more value to the business. The danger to any MSP of selling the Cloud based on cost-reductions alone is that you will attract customers who don’t see IT as a value-add, as a competitive advantage to the growth of their business. Listen to our FREE January webinar with MSP Guru Stuart Crawford on getting your business ready for 2014! As the former owner of an award winning IT Managed Service Provider, Richard Tubb works with MSPs to help them increase sales, take on employees and build up relationships with key industry contacts. Technology wise, the playing field is becoming ever more even for small businesses (SME’s) Vs their corporate counterparts! What has started to change in the last lets say 3-4 years, is the internet is getting faster and that presents opportunities developers have never had before.
So the “Cloud” to use the euphemism, has finally enabled small business, to compete equally in terms of technology with bigger business! Experts have suggested that as many as 30% of SME’s in the UK will adopt some kind of hosted IT service in 2012. Businesses interested in understanding more about what types of cloud computing service may suit your organisation, may benefit from our Free, no obligation Cloud Readiness Review. This entry was posted in Cloud Computing Industry News and tagged Cloud and Small Business, cloud computing, Small business hosting.
Hi Mennah, Many thanks for your questions, we have replied to you offline with regard to these. Cloud storage services for small business owners improve the owners’ capability to share, access, and protect data related to their companies, especially when they have restricted capacity or wish for the management of onsite technology resources. Moving data to the cloud, to be certain, comes with its own gamut of concerns, ranging from availability to security (breaches to vulnerability). A disruption that occurred on Google Drive and some other services, a few days back, has shown how helpless one can get. Google Drive: Google Drive is one of the most advantageous cloud storage services for small business. It is extremely helpful for Adobe formats like Photoshop and Illustrator that are not always installed in one’s computer. SpiderOak: The “Zero-Knowledge Environment” of SpiderOak is appropriate for cautious businessmen or for small business owners dealing with highly sensitive business info. Contrary to this common practice leading to the above-mentioned risk, SpiderOak allows the user to create his password on his own computer and thereby keep it there so that the company staff cannot use it to decrypt the users’ data. Carbonite Business: This service provider backs up folders and files on Mac and Windows PCs, as a “Business Premiere” upgrade gives additional support for Windows servers. The above-mentioned providers of cloud storage services for small business are convenient and reasonable as far as features and pricing are concerned.

Cloud storage service is best for disaster recovery, if anyone want to keep data safe then it is the best solution. With OfficeCare 365, it doesn’t matter whether your colleagues are office-based or out on the road. Our high quality service make us a leading business IT service in the South-East for more than 120 organisations with both local and national coverage.
With professional and consultative people and excellent customer service, we’re proud to have worked in partnership with our customers for many years.
Our reputation is based on the service, professionalism, and expertise we give to more than 120 customers and the long-term relationships that we build with them. Cloud server based hosting of applications which have historically run on desktop or laptop Windows computers is a hot trend with accounting professionals. Although accountants have been experimenting with the cloud for some time, the pace of change has accelerated in recent years.  The primary responsibility for maintaining a secure operating environment lies with the service provider, but tax and accounting professionals are still ultimately responsible for all data given to them by clients. CPA Practice Advisor looked at 7 Applicaiton Hostingproviders that specialize in serving accounting firms.Follow the links below to see how they compared.
Some of the major attributes we looked for included:Quality, Reliability, and Redundancy of Hosting Facilities - We looked for features such as colocation in a Tier 2 or higher public data center, backup data centers (and an assertion about whether the backup location is a cold site, a warm site, or a hot site). Support for Add-on Applications - Users should also confirm that any third party applications they use are also supported in the hosting environment.  Examples of such applications include ODBC drivers, importing tools, as well as any other applications which automatically access and write data to the accounting software database. Third Party Security Reviews in the recent past, including SOC 1 Type II and SOC 2 Type II evaluations (commonly referred to as SSAE 16 engagements).
Automation of End User Administration and setup and provisioning of new customers without the manual intervention of technical support personnel. Business would go out and purchase software, installing each program on multiple machines, keeping track of licensing information for each terminal, as well as tracking updates which required another round of downloads, installations and more IT-support time. We carry out this task not only in specific projects but also in this blog by publishing some informative articles for newbie entrepreneurs to learn a thing or two regarding possibilities to boost their web presence.
Whereas traditional on-site solutions were slow and costly to plan and deploy – often requiring days of an IT suppliers time, plus up front and considerable payments for servers and software, Cloud services are typically very rapid to deploy. But it also offers amazing flexibility, allowing the clients workforce, clients and suppliers to work and collaborate remotely.
The clients workforce may benefit from online presence, seeing when their colleagues are available to talk and when they are busy.
You will attract customers who see IT as a cost – and one which is to be continually reduced. You don't have to do it alone any more - contact Richard and have a chat about your needs and how he can help you.
Because of the improvements in 3 areas, internet speed, the advances in virtualisation technology and the in datacentre infrastructure. This means SME’s can compete on more equal terms in many cases as their corporate competitors, and often win due to the more flexible nature of a smaller business. If this does happen then should we consider that the Cloud has now come of age and is helping to shape the future of how business will access IT in the future?
To arrange a free review or simply to speak to one of our professional team, just contact us or give us a call on 0845 862 0263. One of the biggest concerns is whether a service outage would prevent a business-owner from getting to his data at a time when he needs it urgently. However, the convenience benefits and nominal cost of cloud storage make it so attractive that a growing number of small businesses are going for it.
Google Drive works in collaboration with other Google services and products a small business might already be using, like Gmail, Google Plus, and Chrome browser.
Almost all cloud storage providers (a) encrypt the users’ data while the user is uploading it and (b) store it encrypted on their servers also. However, this also means that if the user forgets his hint or password, his data cannot be recovered.
Special features of Carbonite Business comprise attractive pricing and a free “valet install” option that remotely installs the software for the users if they do not want to do it themselves. Owners of small business need to make their decisions on the basis of their needs and budget. He assists his clients from designing a website to drive sales through SEO, PPC & Social Media.
This is a cloud-based service that brings together the familiar Microsoft Office desktop applications with business-class email, shared calendars, instant messaging (IM), video conferencing, and file sharing. With a subscription-based approach you can predict your monthly expense to cover all of your basic computing needs. Everyone can benefit from collaborative document management, message tracking and archiving services, keeping the virtual team together for the most productive working environment.
He loves to write about Big Data and the Internet of Things, and explore how these technologies are evolving and helping businesses to become more agile.
CPA Practice Advisor recently completed the 2013 Reader Survey, which will be featured in a future issue, and reveals that just under 10% of survey participants have their network hosted completely in the cloud (either hosted by a primary vendor or a specialized hosting company). With services such as Google Apps or Microsoft Sharepoint, two or more people can work on a document simultaneously – with edits, additions and corrections seen in real-time by all parties, wherever in the world they may be.
From advanced email telephony and backup services, to vast server processing power, it’s all in the cloud for small business! In the early days it’s only available to the elite, the corporate entities who can afford it for the advantages and long term return on investment it brings.

Developers can now leverage this to turn the history of technology on its head and develop applications that give the masses (or SME) the latest technology being developed, cost effectively and NOW! Services such as Hosted Exchange, Hosted Desktops, Hosted VoIP and Hosted Servers are among the fastest growing solutions giving a positive advantage to small business!
Is private cloud hosting for someone like me or for a larger customer that runs very large websites?
It is a cloud-based file sharing and storage service coupled with the SaaS-based productivity suite previously known as Google Docs.
Since most providers also store the users’ encryption keys or password, the users’ data is susceptible to breaches or to anyone having physical access to the servers (e.g. This is delivered with the latest security tools for a fixed monthly cost and no upfront infrastructure investments.
You can also reduce costs by substituting Cloud-based services such as email for technically more complex and management-hungry on-premise servers.
You can have access to your email, contacts and core information, even having the ability to view, edit and share both existing and new documents using Cloud versions of Word, Excel and PowerPoint. And the plan is backed by Compatibility’s UK-based technical support operation to give you ultimate peace of mind.
Before joining SiliconANGLE, Mike was an editor at Argophilia Travel News, an occassional contributer to The Epoch Times, and has also dabbled in SEO and social media marketing.
Digitalization of business processes has been the first step toward the great situation that we have today. As the technology develops through more use, it becomes more affordable and therefore available to businesses lower down the perceived food chain.
And you get peace of mind with our local support team, available to you when you need them. He usually bases himself in Bangkok, Thailand, though he can often be found roaming through the jungles or chilling on a beach.
At first, it has been reserved for the great and big companies with big enough budget for modernization of their process, but nowadays, it is not the privilege but the necessity for any type of business. Then something interesting happens, it becomes affordable to the small business, the SME; at that point it goes mainstream!
Users of Google Drive enjoy certain advantages like the capability of displaying files even in the absence of the program they were made with. There are many ways why these things are the latest hit among the small business owners and why so many small businesses conduct their work using virtualization and cloud. When you talk about virtualization, you are actually talking about the infrastructure of your company. By introducing virtualization, you are actually introducing a software that acts as a virtual server. All the database software, email applications, apps that help you do your accounting and every other app that is specific for your own type of work, don’t have to be carried out by a separate physical server, but it can be conducted and supported by a virtual one. If you understand that virtualization is a process that manipulates hardware, the cloud computing is the result and the service that is provided by virtualization. With cloud computing, it is no longer necessary to have the physical server at your premises and all the software can be accessed from a secure server that is maintained by a provider of this service.
There are many benefits of using this type of data storage and software usage as just some of the good sides of cloud computing.
The most obvious way cloud computing makes your life and work easier is the mobility it provides for you and your workers. Since all the apps and data are on the server that is reachable from anywhere, it is possible to conduct business from anywhere. The least of those is the fact that you can finish your work from home after office hours if you have the need. One of the most economic ones is the fact that you can outsource some of your work by using cloud computing or even reduce the offices to the bare minimum, getting your workers to work from home. With this type of business conduct, you don’t have to download software and spend money on training as everything is straightforward. Also, cloud computing ensures that your data and work are safe from being lost due to some physical damage of your drives, servers and the like.
Losing all your data could easily kill your business and that is something that cloud computing prevents. This means that you can tailor it according to your needs and be as flexible as you like with its resources. However, public cloud is more prone to innovations that big companies have to introduce to their services. It seems that the best way to deal with these decisions about moving to the cloud is to combine the benefits of virtualization, private and public clouds. Also, although this is a great solution for many small businesses and those that switched to cloud report major savings and increase of productivity, it is not necessary to move your entire work on the cloud. The whole idea is to carefully tailor the best and the most optimal solution that will suit perfectly the specific features of your business.
Currently employed as a consultant in couple of Web Hosting companies, like australian web hosting company Crucial.

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