Understanding cloud computing


This post was originally published in the Xero Small Business Guides

Cloud computing got you perplexed? You’re not alone. Most of us talk about “the cloud” without even realizing what it really means. We’re clearing the air on cloud computing and how it can benefit your small business.

So what is the cloud?

The cloud is where you put all your data, all your files and even your software so you can access it all from any computer or device, anywhere, at any time. See the difference the cloud can make in how you work, bank, communicate, sell and buy.

  • Traditional banking vs internet banking
    It used to be the case that your financial data was only available to you when you were physically at the bank. With internet banking, your financial data is available online in the cloud. You can access it anytime, anywhere and on any device.
  • Traditional mail vs web mail
    Traditionally, your correspondence was only available at the post office. Web mail means that your mail is available whenever you’re online. You can send an email anytime, from anywhere and on any device.
  • Traditional filing vs cloud storage
    Your files used to only be accessible at the office. With online or cloud storage, your files are conveniently available for you whenever you’re online at anytime, from anywhere.
  • Traditional shopping vs online shopping
    When your physical business is only open at limited times and places then customers have a limited time frame to view and buy your products. With online shopping, customers can enjoy the convenience of being able to view products and shop anytime, anywhere and on any device.
  • Traditional accounting software vs cloud accounting software
    With traditional desktop software, your data lives on your computer or laptop. This means it’s only available at limited times and on limited devices — and often to a limited number of people. With cloud software, your data lives online, so it’s always accessible from anywhere at any time if you have an internet connection. Good cloud software will also let an unlimited number of people use it at the same time.

With online or cloud storage, your files are conveniently available for you whenever you’re online at anytime, from anywhere.

Cloud myth busting

The cloud isn’t all rainbows and sunshine, we’re tackling the tough questions about cloud computing so you can be prepared before moving your small business to the cloud.

  • Traditional banking vs internet banking
    It used to be the case that your financial data was only available to you when you were physically at the bank. With internet banking, your financial data is available online in the cloud. You can access it anytime, anywhere and on any device.

Read the rest of this guide Understanding cloud computing

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