How to choose the best cloud storage for small business

Cloud storage has transformed how businesses operate. By keeping documents in the cloud, you and your team can work from anywhere, without the need for constantly transferring files from device to device. This is not to mention the benefits of automatic saving and remote storage when it comes to keeping your important data safe. 

For a small business, the flexibility and efficiency of cloud storage makes it a logical choice. But how do you choose the package that’s right for you, and the? This guide will help you understand what to look for, and how to decide which cloud storage software meets your needs.

Preparation

, integrations can make transferring files and file versioning (tracking changes and visualizing edits) more seamless. Make sure you consider the word processing, spreadsheet, or conferencing software you’re already using. Some cloud storage packages even come with office applications or other add-ons.

Alternatively, you may be looking for simple back-up software to ensure you never lose your files. In this case, you may not need cloud sync functionality. However, you’ll need to check what kind of devices can be backed up and options for file recovery, if that’s needed.

Step 4: Consider security

Before purchasing cloud storage, you’ll need to consider the security level you’re looking for, which may be driven by the nature of your business. Although storing your data in a networked system might make you feel nervous, most major cloud storage providers take security very seriously.

Check whether data is encrypted in transit and at rest. This will mean that, even if someone does get hold of your files, they won’t be able to read the information. You can also look at how secure the login process is, i.e. whether the service offers two-factor authentication.

If you’re dealing with extremely sensitive data, you may even decide to go for an on-premises (on-prem) storage solution, where your data is self-hosted rather than being transferred to a third-party, external location. This is a more secure option, but you’ll need some technical expertise to set up and maintain the system.

You may also need to take into account the location of the cloud storage provider and its provisions when it comes to privacy laws like the European Union’s (EU’s) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). For example, if you’re handling the data of EU customers, the data must be stored in the EU, in a jurisdiction with similar rules, or, if stored elsewhere, the provider must prove a suitable level of data protection.

If this affects your business, make sure you clarify the data protection status of your chosen provider.

Step 5: Compare providers

We’ve compiled this table to compare the top cloud storage providers for business across five areas:

Provider Key feature Price Storage limit Security Support
Microsoft OneDrive Integrates with Microsoft Office 365 $5/user/month–$12.50/user/month 1–5TB per user Encryption in transit and at rest; personal vault Community, knowledge hub, email
Drive High capacity storage for backing up data $149.62/year for unlimited users–$8,699.62/year 500GB–50TB Encryption in transit and at rest; private key Phone, chat, email
Dropbox Easily share documents between devices and colleagues $12.50/user/month–$20/user/month (minimum three users) 5TB–unlimited Encrypted block storage; customizable visibility Community, knowledge hub, chat, email
Nextcloud Set up on-prem hosting using open source software Free ‘Nextcloud at home’ service for small scale users; Enterprise subscription = $36/user/year– $95.50/user/year (minimum 100 users) Unlimited Option for on-prem storage; customizable levels of encryption Community, knowledge hub, email
BackBlaze Backs up your computers $6/user/month, $60/user/year or $110/user/2 years Unlimited Two-factor verification; military grade encryption Knowledge hub, chat, email

Summary

If you know your requirements for your small business’s cloud storage needs, find out more detail in our guide to thebefore deciding which provider to use. You can then select the package that works best for you in terms of data storage limits and number of users. Remember, you can always adjust this as you scale.