Often with very limited resources, small businesses must use the tools they use on purpose. They don’t have the luxury of testing and paying for expensive software and systems that they ultimately may not keep. Hence, it is important that the solutions you choose are budget-friendly and effective from the start.
For these reasons, cloud computing and storage can provide some important benefits to these businesses. With free or low-cost pricing plans, organizations can leverage cloud technology to grow their business like never before. Because of this, these eight Young Entrepreneur Council experts offered some specific and powerful ways that cloud technology can be used by small and medium-sized businesses to fuel growth.
Young Entrepreneur Council members discuss why small businesses should use cloud technology.
Photos courtesy of each member.
1. Focus on what you do best
With the advent and development of cloud technology, a company can focus on its core competencies while outsourcing its tech stack to reputable infrastructure providers. In this way you can optimize all online interactions with your customers or employees and sleep at night because your data is protected, all audits of your technology are successful and you have an agile platform that can be used anywhere – and at the same time saves time, Resources and the problems associated with maintaining and securing data and infrastructure. – Andrew Saladino, kitchen cabinet kings
2. Share files with clients and team members
Cloud technology has revolutionized companies. In the past, companies had to buy very expensive servers that were difficult to maintain and the data was only available for that particular location. With cloud technology, we can now access data from anywhere in the world, from practically any device. This enables collaboration between teams and the ability to sort a lot of data. In our organization, for example, we use Dropbox to store and share files between team members and customers. Everything used to be on a local drive and accessing large files was very cumbersome. – Jean Ginzburg, JeanGinzburg.com
3. To automate repetitive processes
A big part of cloud technology is how much time can save your small business. You can use it to automate your repetitive manual processes like emailing, invoicing, payment processing, reminders, and more. Data entry is a critical part of running a business. However, if you can leave it to automation, you will ultimately save yourself time and money. – Stephanie Wells, impressive shapes
4. How to create a flexible working environment
Small businesses can use cloud computing to create a flexible work environment for their employees. You can use collaboration tools and let employees work from anywhere without setting up a proper office. There are two benefits to this: you can hire talented people from around the world and save a lot of money that you would otherwise have spent setting up your office. – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster
5. Build solid customer relationships
Even if you’re just starting out, your small business should focus on using customer relationship management (CRM) software. CRMs can manage contacts, send emails, make calls, track sales, automate processes, market your business and much more. Solid customer relationships are a key growth driver. By using CRM software, you can stay connected with customers, improve business performance, and scale the business with ease. With cloud-based CRMs, multiple users can access information simultaneously from any device, so your business can go further and higher. – Ismael Wrixen, FE International
6. How to add extra security to your network
Small businesses can use cloud computing to add an extra layer of security to their network. Most startups and small businesses face security threats because they invest less in keeping them safe. However, with cloud computing, they can have security protocols in place to protect sensitive transactions and data, and to protect their business from malicious online threats. – Josh Kohlbach, wholesale suite
7. How to save your important documents
The cloud is an excellent place to keep all of your meeting documents. If you’re like most companies, you have executive, team, and corporate meetings. With all of your meeting documents available, you don’t have to worry about someone lacking access or having to send a file. The cloud makes meeting business partners and teams easier than ever. – John Turner, SeedProd LLC
8. Simplify tasks
In the past year in particular, small businesses were able to really take advantage of cloud technology. With so many employees working from home, the cloud system has allowed companies to simplify tasks and processes while driving growth. A great advantage of the cloud system is that it is not tied to a specific location – it is accessible anywhere. Documents can be saved and then accessed by multiple people. For the many companies with different employees working on a single project at different locations, this is a perfect solution. The ability to automate tasks also greatly reduces the overall workload. By spending a little time setting up a cloud server, a company can automate tasks like posting on social media and sending out email updates. – Blair Thomas, eMerchant Broker