The information technology revolution has radically transformed how we do business. In the 2000s, for example, the expansion of broadband worldwide made distributed teams possible. And in the last decade, the rise of cloud computing has driven dramatic improvements.
According to researcher Yan Han at the University of Arizona-Tucson, using a cloud server over a physical server can reduce costs by at least 50%. Furthermore, he noted the cloud servers in his study experienced minimal downtime. Meanwhile, in both 2009 and 2010, University of Arizona-Tucson servers suffered outages lasted a few hours each.
This quick example is just a taste of how cloud computing could benefit your business. In this article, we’ll discuss the various ways cloud servers have transformed commerce.
Work Can Get Done Anywhere, Anytime
Before cloud computing, the workday ended when you left the office. For some, that might sound like a good thing. However, many professionals/entrepreneurs enjoy being busy. Furthermore, inspiration can strike at the oddest of times.
With a cloud server, you no longer have to wait until the following day to be productive again. If you choose, you can continue to work on projects from the comfort of your own home. If you have a groundbreaking idea, you can get it out of your head before it disappears forever.
This benefit of cloud computing isn’t without its drawbacks, though. If you aren’t careful, it can upset your company’s work/life balance. For some talent, the prospect of this happening is simply unacceptable.
Also, remote working can present security issues. Hackers often target less-secure mobile devices/laptops so they can break into corporate servers. For this reason, the installation of cloud servers is a task best handled by an IT consultant. They’ll ensure that all employees with remote access are using secure devices, and are educated on security protocols.
Server Costs May Fall Significantly
Of all the metrics you track in your business, expenditures are among the most significant. At the end of the day, we all want to turn a profit. Over the past few years, cloud servers have made it easier for enterprises to do so.
For starters, cloud computing is far more efficient. Servers used in cloud computing operations tend to be top-of-the-line models. Therefore, these machines usually consume less energy than older ones.
You’ll also save a bunch of money upfront. In the past, expanding network capacity meant you had to buy physical servers. Today that’ll cost you around $1,500 or more per server tower. However, that doesn’t include setup, energy, and ongoing maintenance costs.
Over time, you can expect to save significantly by using the cloud. As we mentioned in the introduction, cost savings of greater than 50% are possible.
Downtime Will Become A Thing Of The Past
In a perpetually-online world, downtime can cost you thousands in sales. Research and advisory firm Gartner pegs downtime’s cost at approximately $5,600 per minute. Now, specific numbers vary widely by industry and business size. But, the above stat illustrates how devastating unplanned server shutdowns can be.
Numerous events can cause downtime. Hardware defects, DDoS attacks, and natural disasters can cause your server to collapse like a house of cards. Physical servers are uniquely vulnerable to all three events, while cloud servers are resistant to them.
Cloud server providers like AWS have redundancies in place. As a result, if a blackout or a hardware failure knocks out one server farm, others can pick up the slack within seconds. Many providers also follow best-in-class security protocols. Those that are HIPAA-compliant are certified to store super-sensitive health data. If the US government trusts a cloud server provider to secure your medical history, they are likely more secure than a self-managed server farm.
You’ll Be AbleTo Scale With Ease
In the internet age, virality is both a blessing and a curse. The ability to get millions of consumers excited about your product overnight has made it easier to grow a business. However, too much attention too fast can cripple your tiny server farm. The term, “The Reddit Hug of Death” refers to sites that collapse once users link them in popular Reddit forums.
You can avoid this embarrassing event by hosting your site on a cloud server. By joining a provider that offers autoscaling, your website will migrate to servers with more RAM and CPU power as demand spikes. This way, your site will stay online after your product gets featured by Oprah.
Cloud Computing Will Allow You To Offer SaaS Apps
SaaS, or Software As A Service, has given legacy software providers a second lease on life. Ever since peer-to-peer file sharing became a thing, piracy has ravaged the bottom lines of companies like Adobe. In the past, if you wanted to acquire Photoshop legally, you used to have to pay about $700 or more. This lofty price point made the popular image-editing software a prime target for software pirates.
However, starting in 2013, Adobe moved to a monthly subscription model. To do this, they moved their software products to a cloud server. Now, you can get access to 20 different design apps by Adobe for about $60/month. Better yet, users no longer need to buy updated versions of programs – Adobe updates applications on the cloud as time progresses.
Hosting Your Own ServerIs So 1998
The world of business is changing faster than ever before. Pre-2010 guides that advised you to get a physical server are now woefully out-of-date. By embracing the cloud, you’ll save money, time, and loads of headaches.