With so much data at hand, space and storage is always an issue. That is why the current trend has seen a sudden shift to cloud platforms. Capitalizing on these trends, many service providers are launching significant cloud-based platforms that are not just changing how industries function but also providing them with several benefits. But before we look at the 10 best cloud platforms, let us understand what it is.
What is a Cloud Platform?
Do you remember how we used external hard drives back in the day to store all our data and files? It was always a hassle, the space was never enough. What a cloud platform does is allows you to store and function over the internet. “Cloud providers give you the flexibility to build, manage, and deliver small and large-scale web and mobile applications. With virtual server hosting, they provide you with diverse resources over the internet, such as big data analytics, IoT, compute, and more to streamline development,” writes all code.
Benefits of Cloud Platforms
Now that you have an idea about cloud computing, let’s look at some of its benefits and why should small-scale businesses prefer switching over:
- Ease of access
- Flexible more than ever
- Enhanced data security
- Cost-effective service and economical upfront investment
- Convenience while maintaining a remote team & facility
- Excellent data backup that’s also easy
10 Best Cloud Services For Small Businesses in 2021
Probably one of the best cloud platforms for everyone out there, whether businesses or individuals, is none other than Google Drive. Currently, it is amongst the most popular cloud computing platforms, providing a solution for all types of files from text to photos to videos. You simply need to create an account and then access everything you need, on the go. Not only is it easy to use but also has a standard SSL protection for all the files, so no stressing about security and privacy. The interface is very user-friendly making it compatible with numerous templates and apps.
Microsoft Azure comes with enhanced security, better flexibility, and a budget-friendly business model that is scalable for everyone. “Once you have signed up for the Microsoft Azure cloud service platform you get to run virtual desktops & applications with its storage and backup system based in the cloud. Moreover, it is a cloud computing platform vastly designed to offer organizations built-in migration tools. This means businesses are able to migrate Windows server & Remote Desktop Services (RDS) to various other devices,” writes WP ERP.
Shopify is the most popular online platform at the moment. They are the number one choice for e-commerce and they have built a strong reputation. With an easy and quick set-up that can be done by anyone, their online platform doesn’t require you to be an IT expert. If you’re still hesitant, you can always try their services for free for a period of 30 days. You can review their free templates and tools to get a better overview of your business and see if Shopify is the right fit for your company.
Microsoft Teams offers some of the most competitive aspects of the online platform services. Their organized channel management, ability to video conference and connect employees to Microsoft’s entire ecosystem of apps (Excel, PowerPoint, Word, etc.) makes Microsoft Teams one of the most competitive platforms in the industry. Additionally, they also provide its users with new creative ways to connect with colleagues through their in-app meme creation. The only downside is you have to be an Office 365 Business user to be able to use the platform.
Easy to use, grow simultaneously with your business, and very affordable, HubSpot is the perfect choice for startups and small businesses. Their e-mail marketing tool is easy to navigate and allows entrepreneurs to create long-lasting engagements with their customers through their automation tool. They also allow businesses to add basic CRM and sales tools to their marketing automation software at no extra fee.
Dropbox is another very popular and highly efficient cloud service platform that is quite beneficial and a must-have for small businesses. Ideal for storing your files, you can access and manage them from anywhere. Additionally, once you sign up on this platform, you get an additional 2 GB of data, all for free!
Zoom is an online platform that offers video conferencing and webinar services, comparable to Skype, GoToMeeting, and Hangouts. Although the same features provided by Zoom are comparable to other similar providers, Zoom has been known for its easy-to-use application. The most popular feature that Zoom has to offer is participants are no longer required to sign up and create an account to be able to join meetings. Having the web URL that links directly to the meeting is the only set-up that’s required for users. Additionally, Zoom also offers a webinar management system that helps users create virtual and live events.
Salesforce.com Professional Edition
A leader in CRM, Salesforce.com has created a strong reputation for itself through its many features. Giving entrepreneurs a complete overview of their business through reporting and analytics, email marketing, and sales forecasts just to name a few, Salesforce.com Professional Edition is the perfect choice for those who want to get a full report of their business.
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When it comes to choosing software that can meet all your accounting needs, Xero is a strong option to consider. A strong competitor of QuickBooks Online, Xero provides the same features and is also very popular among entrepreneurs. For entrepreneurs looking to grow their businesses, Xero offers a wide range of features and automation capabilities. It’s definitely an online platform to consider for all of your accounting needs.
Ricoh Canada Cloud Solutions and Services
Last but not least, on our list of ten best cloud services for small-scale businesses is none other than RICOH Cloud Workflow Solutions. You can’t find a better cloud solution for your business for a price that is nothing but meager. With enhanced flexibility and improved security, you don’t need to worry about your important files and folders. Additionally, Ricoh Canada’s user-friendly and easy-to-use interface is like a cherry on the pie.
Cloud services are probably the most reliable in terms of security, privacy, and the features they provide. Therefore, it is highly crucial to move your business to the cloud to access everything on the go. If you need more information about the same, you can subscribe to the CanadianSME Small Business magazine, the perfect place to clear all your doubts!