More and more SMBs are migrating to the cloud, and that is not a surprise considering the numerous benefits the cloud can offer them. For an SMB, the cloud is a cost-efficient and secure answer to their growing data needs and IT security requirements. The cloud grows with them and lets them scale their business without worrying about a corresponding rise in IT costs. Plus, the cloud service provider mostly takes care of the important aspects of security and backups with the cloud. And then, there’s the convenience of any-time-anywhere data access. While there are many benefits of storing your data on the cloud, your information is still yours. There are a few things you need to know before you jump onto the cloud.

DATA STORAGE LOCATION

Ask your cloud services provider where your data will be stored (as in the location of the data center). Ask them if they have multiple data centers. If yes, ask if they will back up your data and store them at different places. It is great if your cloud services provider does that since that ensures the highest safety for your data.

HOW SECURE WILL YOUR DATA BE?

You pass on a major chunk of your data security responsibility when you hire a cloud services provider. You don’t have to worry about your data security, but you still need to know how they plan to keep your data safe. Ask your cloud services provider for details regarding their data security procedure. Have them share all policies, SOPs, and data security frameworks they claim to have in place.

PAST PERFORMANCE & DATA LOSS HISTORY

Everyone talks about their best projects in a sales meeting. What you need to know are the worst ones. Ask your cloud services provider to share with you their data loss/downtime trends for the past year. Observe the trend. How often does their system give way, and how long does it last? This is important for you to understand because this metric translates into a loss of business for you. Finally, don’t forget to ask for a client list. Like we said before, everyone highlights the good things about themselves in a sales meeting. If you want to know how good your cloud service provider is, ask them for a client list–both current and past. Check how many of them are from your industry vertical. Try reaching out to those who are willing to talk. Find out what they like the most about your cloud service provider and what aspects they find negative. Find out why their former customers left them. Usually, customers are pretty good indicators of the quality of service a business provides. Hopefully, these tips help you find a cloud service provider who fits in well with your needs.

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