Five Cloud Storage Solutions for Small Business Owners

by John Burke

2 min read

Cloud-based data storage systems can help you avoid devastating losses from computer hardware failures, fire damage, and equipment theft. If you can resist the temptation to embrace the myths about cloud computing, your business could function more smoothly and securely. With a cloud-based system, stored information is readily accessible to your authorized employees, regardless of their location. Here are five popular cloud-based data platforms.

Dropbox

Dropbox offers a single sign-on procedure (SSO), requiring you to sign in only when entering the system to gain access to the Active Directory. The Active Directory provides access to all your business needs, even those beyond Dropbox. This makes it unnecessary to remember a large number of passwords. Dropbox Business has a five-user minimum, and you can get a price discount by paying the fee on an annual basis. Dropbox has been available in Canada since 2014. One Canadian customer, CEL Electric, utilizes Dropbox Business to connect the company’s headquarters with field supervisors in some of Canada’s most remote regions.

Apple’s iCloud Drive

Apple’s iCloud Drive is free and available for both Apple and Windows operating systems or through a web browser. You might prefer Microsoft or Google office productivity software over Apple’s office productivity apps if your business uses Windows. iCloud Drive offers no apps for use with the Android or Windows Phone operating systems. It does not follow the standards of the file syncing industry. File-syncing services allow you to download and install a program on all of your computers, with the ability to share files and folders between devices. Syncing files between devices allows you to store data on a single device in your network or in the cloud, making more storage space available. The syncing process automatically keeps software applications up-to-date. Noncompliance with the syncing standards is a significant drawback.

Google Drive’s Tech Tools for Small Business

Consider the variety of features available with Google Drive when compared to other, popular cloud storage services. Google Drive’s built-in document editing features can make it an attractive choice. Its document collaboration tools allow multiple users to work on the same document simultaneously while using different devices. Google Drive is free and includes 15 GB of free storage space. Documents created on Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides do not reduce the amount of available free storage space on Google Drive. Users can purchase extra storage space for a monthly fee.

Amazon Cloud

Amazon Cloud now operates as Amazon Web Services, offering web hosting services as well as cloud-based data storage platforms for small businesses. AWS Canada handles payment processing for your customers’ purchases. It is user-friendly and offers a free tier for new customers, who range from small businesses to large financial institutions, such as the National Bank of Canada. The AWS Cloud offers an extensive variety of services and support options.

Secure Cloud Storage Solutions Available With Box

Box for Business provides extensive compatibility with Microsoft Office and Adobe Acrobat. It offers data storage and access for groups of at least three people and uses the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) security system for transmission of data to and from the service. Box for Business has mobile apps for Android and iOS. Its Zones feature addresses concerns about country-specific data privacy and customer data residency, allowing you to store all of your data in Canada. It also addresses data privacy concerns for businesses subject to strict regulations.

References & Resources

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