In today’s world, cloud computing has the ability to make a huge impact on small businesses. Previously, SMBs have been limited in their options, unable to access the same resources that large companies do. But with greater accessibility and affordability, things are changing and SMBs now have the ability to compete alongside their leading counterparts. In fact, they might even have the competitive edge.

As individuals, many of us enjoy the benefits of cloud-based technology on a daily basis. Using applications like Dropbox and Google Drive we no longer have to worry about the cost of expensive technology and locked-in contracts, and instead we have reliable cloud storage, easy access and collaboration at our fingertips.

Similarly, these cloud benefits exist for businesses too - helping to save time and money with all kinds of applications such as Amazon Connect for contact center operations, Xero for accounting, Salesforce for CRM systems, Dropbox for document storage and Slack for internal communications. 

But until recently, the assumption has been that cloud-based technology is only for those big businesses that can afford it. That simply isn’t true. Cloud-based technology is the perfect solution for SMBs and in this article we outline why.

Is moving to the cloud worth it? 

Here are six reasons why the cloud is better than on-premise technology for SMBs:

1. Financial

Cloud-based technology is cap-ex free. There’s no longer an upfront investment for hardware or ongoing costs for updates. Implementation and management is quick, easy and cost effective. Best of all, subscription pricing allows businesses to pay as they go - a great advantage and cost certainty for any SMB keeping an eye on cash flow. 

2. Scalability

Unlike large corporations, SMBs don’t always have the cash reserves to ride out business fluctuations or seasonal changes. Cloud-based infrastructure gives agility to SMBs with the ability to scale up and back down as needed. There’s no more buying additional servers, only to find a month later that you’re wasting money on unused resources. SMBs can make changes fast, scale operations to meet changing business needs, and only pay for what they need, when they need it. 

3. Accessibility and collaboration

With cloud-based infrastructure and a reliable internet connection, staff can access the tools they need to work from anywhere. SMBs no longer need to be based in big cities, paying expensive office rent. Instead, SMBs can hire remote workers, reduce capital expenses, and offer flexible working conditions to improve the employee experience. Even better, there’s no longer an excuse for siloed information between staff and departments. With the right integrations in place, teams can do more together - and do it better. Data sharing becomes effortless and the customer experience can truly be supercharged.

4. Security

Data security is more important than ever and constantly monitoring this is not something SMBs can practically manage without the help of a third-party. Leading cloud-based software providers follow strict security configurations and are compliant with both local and global standards. This means that data stored on the cloud is often far more secure than on-premise protection managed independently by businesses. Even SMBs operating in highly regulated industries will benefit from the security and compliance offered by cloud service providers. 

5. Support and maintenance

Not many SMBs have an internal IT department. Instead, someone who once helped fix the office printer suddenly became the go-to IT expert (in addition to doing their own job). With cloud-based software, this volunteer is finally freed of their added responsibilities. All maintenance and support sits with the cloud supplier who offers fast customer support, ongoing maintenance and regular software updates. 

6. Competitive edge

The barriers no longer exist. SMBs can play amongst the big dogs now. With access to enterprise level technology on an affordable pay-as-you-go basis, SMBs are no longer held back by expensive and disparate legacy systems. In an instant, business continuity measures are addressed, security is enhanced, operations are streamlined and all at a fraction of the cost. 

So... it’s no longer a question of ‘should you move to the cloud?’ it’s when. And the answer is now. By transitioning to the cloud, SMBs can be innovative, remain competitive and deliver a better employee and customer experience to drive business growth.

For SMBs looking to improve customer support operations with a cloud-based contact center solution, Local Measure Engage for Amazon Connect offers a quick and easy transition to the cloud to improve agent efficiency and transform customer experience.