Business owners need to be able to store their data securely and cheaply. The cloud is the perfect solution to meet these needs, yet often it’s hard to decide which online storage provider will meet your company’s needs best.
In this article, Cloudwards.net looks at the five best cloud storage services for entrepreneurs. Businesses have a greater need for reliable and secure online storage today than ever before. A good provider can save you money while enhancing security and decreasing management overhead for businesses of any size.
The alternative to using cloud services is to either host storage servers on-site or rent server space in a data center — both of which are extremely unattractive options when compared to the affordability and benefits of online storage providers.
Not all online storage providers get created equal. However, to make the choice easier for business owners, we here at Cloudwards.net have chosen five of the very best for your particular needs.
Best Online Storage for Business 2018
Why Businesses Need Quality Online Storage Solutions
Businesses can gain massive benefits from online storage services, but the alternatives are extremely unattractive for several reasons. The first option for online storage is to host private servers in-house.
To be fair, in-house hosting servers are more secure — as long as your business has experienced IT security staff to lock storage server data down. This solution isn’t a viable one. Not only does an organization need to purchase expensive hardware, but they also need to update the servers’ hardware and software continually.
Small-to-medium-sized business most likely can’t afford this expense at all, since, on top of equipment and software costs, they are going to need to hire (and sometimes train) people to manage and administer the servers.
Furthermore, businesses who run their own servers on-site are going to need costly prevention and recovery mechanisms in place to protect the integrity of their data. All it takes is one fire, tornado, sprinkler system malfunction or any other unforeseeable disaster to ruin the storage servers.
And poof! All of the organization’s data is gone. The second option is to rent space in a data center that hosts colocated servers. This idea works well for some, though cloud servers seem to be gaining the upper hand slowly.
Again, this is an unattractive option because small-to-medium-sized businesses need to hire a moderate-sized IT staff to oversee the servers. Fortunately, cloud services have become more accessible in recent years, and the cost of online storage has plummeted at the same time.
It just makes more sense to use a cloud service now since businesses won’t have to worry about disaster recovery, hiring staff for entire IT departments, or maintaining storage servers, hardware, and other related equipment.
Sync.comSync.com is one of our favorite online storage services, and for a good reason, it has fast servers, is affordable, very user-friendly and extremely secure. It’s pretty clear that businesses have a high need for secure services, and Sync.com offers some of the best on the market.
In fact, it provides what’s known as zero-knowledge security. To put it in simpler terms, nobody who works at Sync.com could ever access your content. The file menu is self-explanatory, but the vault menu offers storage space for files that won’t get synced to other devices.
This feature gives users a high amount of control over where their records end up (a huge plus for security). The links section displays a list of related content and the time that they remain valid. Also, Sync.com is easy to use, so training staff is a painless and less time-consuming affair.
Other Reasons Why We Like Sync.com
Sync.com is our top pick for the best online storage for business and it’s one of our favorite online storage providers, period. What makes it great for businesses large or small is its price as well as the generous 5GB allowance.
Since it’s very secure, you’re also guaranteed to have your data kept safe from hackers and other undesirables. It’s also perfectly affordable and offers plenty of storage space for all your needs.
- Fast syncing
- Secure link sharing
- Encryption slows previews
- Mobile client lacks file sharing
- No 3rd-party tools
EgnyteEgnyte is custom-made for businesses and offers several unique features for entrepreneurs. The only thing keeping it from the number one spot is its price. Egnyte is our second top pick for businesses, as it also implements robust security measures.
Egnyte also offers custom branding, so that organizations can adjust their Egnyte domain to align with a personal logo and style, adding custom images to their headers or even changing the URL to include a company’s name.
Furthermore, they have great file sharing and collaboration features. Security is a huge concern for any business that works online, but Egnyte offers full permissions options for files and folders to help keep things locked down.
For example, a user could have read-only access to a file to bar them from making changes or accidentally to delete it.
Other Reasons Why We Like Egnyte
Though a bit on the pricey side, Egnyte is an excellent service tailored toward businesses. And so we don’t hesitate to recommend it to our readers.
Thanks to its excellent security and tracking features, you’ll always know what’s being done to data and by whom. They provide 256-bit AES encryption when data gets transferred to their servers.
- Fast block-level sync
- Secure file sharing
- Affordable pricing
- No Linux support
- A bit expensive
- No options for single users
Dropbox for BusinessDropbox's business-oriented service is a strong contender in the online storage market, thanks to its easy-to-use interface and large space allowance.
At its core, Dropbox for Business is an excellent online storage service, but it has many enticing ancillary features on top of its regular suite aimed at individuals. Not only can users sync files between their computers and the cloud, but they can also sync files with other users on the same business plan.
One other thing that makes Dropbox a good fit for companies is its centrally managed administration console, which allows a manager to track member sign-ins and keep an eye on file access. There’s also an auditing system that shows in detail which users have changed files and when adding another layer of security for those who need it.
Other Reasons Why We Like Dropbox for Business
Dropbox for Business is a great solution for any entrepreneur who needs to store files safely and securely. Smaller business may want to look elsewhere for a better fit.
But almost any other company will find Dropbox for Business works perfectly, even though it isn’t technically a backup service, business owners could use it as one in a pinch.
- Unlimited file recovery
- Centralized Admin panel
- Auditing & report generation
- Five-users minimum
- Trial requires payment
- No private key management
SugarSyncSugarSync is a great online storage provider for individuals and small business but lacks certain features required for larger firms that could’ve made it end up higher on this list.
Also, they have extensive backup features so businesses can ensure that they don’t lose any data. Though online storage creates redundant copies of data that essentially act as a backup, having proper protocols in place provides an extra layer of protection.
Smartphones have little storage space, and SugarSync offers applications for just about every variety of mobile device, enabling employees to access their data from anywhere there’s a signal.
Other Reasons Why We Like SugarSync
SugarSync is one of our favorite online storage providers thanks to its speed, security and great mobile app. Like Egnyte, SugarSync also does an excellent job of providing robust mobile functionality.
SugarSync is great alternative for businesses, as they allow users to sync any file among an unlimited number of devices — ideal for collaboration. Businesses will love using the service, though it offers less control over files than other entries on this list.
- Includes backup software
- Fantastic mobile access
- Fast upload/download speeds
- No backup scheduling
- Slows down sometimes
- No zero-knowledge security
Geared towards larger businesses, Box is a great solution for any company that needs to keep track of many employees, as well as securely store their data. Box is another fantastic online storage solution that offers a service tailored to enterprises and small businesses.
It’s a good fit for businesses that are heavily regulated because it meets the qualifications for a lot of different regulatory programs including HIPAA, PCI, and many others. Box also gives administrators a lot of control over who can and cannot access certain data.
Managers have access to several reports which allow them to track who has accessed a file and when. Its online storage solution provides secure file sharing, file syncing features and centralized control for administrators.
Other Reasons Why We Like Box
Just because it ended last on this list, doesn’t mean that we’re not huge fans of Box. Since it offers zero-knowledge security, meaning nobody can’t snoop around in your data. Few competitors will give you the kind of control that Box does.
Though individual businesses may find a better fit with another online storage solution, Box is well-suited to large enterprises. And anyone who needs to keep track of a lot of employees.
- Centralized account management
- Zero-knowledge security
- HIPAA compliant service
- Three-user minimum
- Business plan is expensive
- No backup feature
Considering the rather long list of requirements that businesses have for an online storage provider, it’s no easy task to select one that does an equally great job for each type of firm.
However, thanks to its versatility and ease-of-use, not to mention its friendly pricing, we feel that most businesses will be happy using Sync.com, a secure and safe service for anyone. Which company do you prefer to store your company’s data? Let us know in the comments below, and thank you for reading.