Ways Small Businesses Can Leverage Cloud Computing to Accelerate Growth

26 August 2021

Cloud computing holds incredible potential for small business owners. Learn ways you can use cloud technology to boost profitability and growth. 

Cloud computing is no longer a new topic. You’ve likely read or heard about it. If you haven’t, you’ve most certainly used it. 

For instance, whenever you send an email via Gmail, you’re using cloud technology. The same applies when using Microsoft 365 services, whether Excel for record-keeping or MS-Word to write email marketing letters. 

Unfortunately, very few small businesses take cloud computing seriously, with the majority still relying on traditional hosting. Migrating to the cloud could be the magic wand to breathe new life into your business and propel you to extra levels of growth and profitability.

Below are several ways small businesses can leverage cloud technology to reinvent themselves. First, though, is a definition. 

What’s Cloud Computing?

Cloud is an on-demand service that allows users to access computing resources, especially data storage and computing power, without direct active management by the user. 

Cloud computing makes it possible to access these services from a remote third-party database rather than keeping a file of propriety computing hardware and software, including hard drives, special software, etc. 

Companies that provide cloud computing services allow users to store files and applications on remote servers and access these resources as and when they need them via the internet. 

Cloud services can be public, private, or hybrid. Essentially, public clouds are public. They’re accessible to all. Anyone can sign up and begin using the service right away. Meanwhile, private clouds offer private services to selected individuals or groups over an internal network. Hybrid clouds are a cross between public and private clouds.  

Benefits of Cloud Computing 

The benefits of cloud computing are endless. However, SMBs already using cloud technologies are most excited about four capabilities;

  1. Convenience: Cloud solutions allow you to access computing resources, including data and software applications, wherever you need them, whenever you need them. 
  2. Collaboration: Many organizations now have teams that operate and collaborate remotely on projects and other activities. Cloud computing is an invaluable cog in remote collaboration. 
  3. Cost efficiency: Every SMBs prioritizes cost efficiency as a tool for profitability and sustainability. Cloud computing reduces overhead and general expenses without compromising outcomes. 
  4. Backup and recovery: Disasters such as weather, power surges, hardware failures are just some common causes of data loss. That’s before mentioning data theft. Cloud computing provides a reliable backup and recovery tool to mitigate data losses. 

Ways to Leverage Cloud Technology for Growth and Profitability 

The following are several ways small and medium-sized businesses can leverage cloud computing to accelerate profitability and growth. 

  • Set up remote workplaces 

We’ve already mentioned the accelerated growth in remote work. According to Flex Jobs, about 26.7% of the global workforce work remotely, a number set to rise to over 36.2% by 2025. The main reasons for the massive shift to remote work include changing work cultures and the inherent benefits of remote work, including increased productivity and reduced costs. 

Cloud computing makes it easy to roll out remote work in your organization. You can even hire employees from a different continent, and they’ll be able to work for you without any issues. This gives you access to a broader audience pool while reducing overhead costs. 

  • Encourage collaboration 

Collaboration has endless benefits in the workplace. A collaborative workforce is more creative and innovative as team members can learn from each other. Collaborative teams are also more flexible and productive because they help each other out. 

Again, cloud computing is perhaps the most important tool in modern-day collaboration. First off, by enabling remote work, it allows individuals to join their teams from anywhere. Secondly, allowing convenient access to online resources from any location allows team members to follow up and stay up to date no matter where they are. 

  • Leverage cloud to boost scalability 

Scalability and flexibility are the two giant killers in business. Thousands of businesses die every year, while many more stagnate because they couldn’t scale to handle a bigger load. For instance, how often do we see business websites crash after sudden traffic surges? How often do organizational computer systems crash because of excess load? It happens far too often.

Cloud computing is the sure way out of this problem. You don’t have to worry about bandwidth or storage capacity with cloud computing because your cloud provider has enough to handle any capacity. So, when visitor numbers surge suddenly, you’re more likely to close more sales than watch as your site shuts down. 

  • Use it to provide an extra security layer

Security is a major issue today. According to a Tech Jury report, 64% of small businesses experienced at least one form of cyber attack in the past year. The report also says that there are over 64,000 attempts to hack small businesses every day. So, if you haven’t been hacked this year, you’re lucky. 

Cloud computing may not entirely solve global cybercrime. However, it provides an extra security layer that can shield small businesses from the damning consequences of a cyber breach. For instance, cloud providers offer 24/7 monitoring and live threat response at a relatively lower price than traditional cybersecurity firms. They also provide security protocols that actively deter cybercrime. 

  • Disaster recovery 

Finally, small businesses are exposed to all kinds of disasters. This year alone, we’ve seen the Haiti earthquake claim hundreds of lives, wildfires in Mana, Hawaii, and flooding in several areas locally and globally. When these disasters happen, small businesses can lose crucial data vital to the existence of the business. 

Cloud computing safeguards businesses from such disasters by allowing convenient backup and recovery. For example, you could lose your entire computing system in a fire but still be able to recover all your accounting files from the cloud. 

Summary 

The need to adopt cloud technology is greater than ever. Whether you’re primarily an online merchant or wholly online, the cloud can be a lifesaver. Take a moment to speak with a NIX Solutions cloud expert to learn more.