If you’re like most businesses, you have a lot of digital files.
Unlike the old days when it was common to see large rooms filled floor-to-ceiling with massive file cabinets, today’s recordkeeping is all done paperless.
And where are those electronic files kept? On data storage, of course.
Whether you’re just starting to try out data-driven marketing or it is something your firm has used for a while, there are numerous benefits to making sure you have the right solution for your needs.
Are you ready to learn more about what is data storage and why it is so crucial for business?
Let’s get started.
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What is Data Storage?
Simply put, data storage is where electronic files are kept.
Everything from customer records in a CRM program to the graphic image of your company’s logo is data.
That means you need a place that is safe, secure, and easy to access when you need the information.
What Are the Types of Data Storage?
Essentially, there are three main types of data storage.
Each one has a set of pros and cons that make it better for some organizations and not suitable for others.
Cloud computing is easy-to-use and can be accessed from nearly anywhere with a correct username and password.
While this is highly convenient, the costs to store excessively large amounts of data might not be suitable for large corporations.
Server-based or hyper-convergence storage
Likewise, server-based or hyper-convergence storage is ideal for enterprise level users.
This is a type of data storage that includes having a large bank of servers at your physical business location.
Those with trained IT departments and a large budget often choose this option, as it is best for situations where there’s a tremendous amount of data to store.
The only problem? It can cost thousands of dollars to operate.
This is where you have a localized server at your business that acts as a drive to be shared amongst users.
Due to size constraints, this type of data storage is best for small businesses.
The downside is that, unless you have an optional cloud backup of data, a sudden catastrophe like a building fire can totally wipe out all of your data.
How Does Data Storage Work?
All types of data storage are essentially other computers that you have access to in order to store important files.
➤ In some cases, like traditional storage, the drive is kept in your office.
➤ With server-based or hyper-convergence storage, large racks of computer drives linked together offer secure space for digital files.
➤ Cloud computing is the process of accessing a large server across the country or even the globe via the internet, which then allows you to save, delete, or even copy files.
All types of data storage include a physical component somewhere that keeps your files safe, secure and away from unknown third-parties.
While some methods are more secure than others, it is usually a combination of multiple file storage types that’s ideal for most companies.
By this, we mean a physical data option, like storing the information on a local server or hard drive.
Then, backing it up via online or cloud storage for added measure.
What is the Importance of Choosing the Right Data Storage for Businesses?
Of course, there are plenty of benefits of having the right data storage solution for your business that go far beyond not having to deal with a massive file room inside your building.
In fact, some of the reasons why data storage is important have nothing to do with the files themselves and more to do with ease of access.
Here’s what you need to know.
Files are accessible any time
The world moves fast these days and this means it is important to have access to your data when and where you need it.
While certain options like traditional storage don’t make it as easy to gain access to the documentation you’re looking for on the fly, cloud computing does.
In fact, cloud computing even makes it possible for your organization to have remote employees.
When everyone with the right credentials can access your CRM software or other databases, it makes it far easier to be productive.
Cost savings & Overall budget
Simply put, data storage enables companies to operate efficiently.
But trying to choose the right one for your business sometimes comes down to overall cost savings.
For example, it might make sense to use cloud computing if you have remote employees.
However, if the solution you’re considering requires a per user fee and you have hundreds of team members, this might not be responsible.
Likewise, having an entire enterprise level server at a small business wouldn’t make sense, as it would cost far too much to hire an IT department to maintain.
Companies concerned about data and website security need to be picky about the data storage solution they choose.
While it might seem counterintuitive to hire a third-party cloud storage company to handle your data storage, the truth is these firms spend a ton of money each year upgrading systems to prevent hacking and breaches.
As a customer, this works in your favor.
f you had traditional or server-based data storage at your office location, you would have to continuously update your security protocols to meet the latest threat.
Instead, these organizations know they’re handling important data and make it their business to remain secure against the latest round of cyberattacks.
No need to physically move data
If your business is growing, there’s a good chance you’ll eventually move to a different office space.
For those who utilize on-site data storage or even those old-fashioned filing cabinets, that means your company will have to pay to move that data to the new location.
Consider this for a moment. Huge server racks, computer systems, or even boxes of bulky and largely out-of-date physical files.
Who really wants to deal with that or pay for the added expense of movers doing it for you?
In contrast, having the right cloud computing solution can keep this from ever being an issue.
Less chance of data loss
With the right data storage solution, your business can greatly reduce the chance of data loss in the event of a catastrophic situation.
For example, what would happen if you used a traditional data storage system without cloud backup and there was a massive fire overnight in your building?
All of that information would be lost and your firm would be forced to start from scratch.
Likewise, storing data on local laptops or desktop computers isn’t always a good idea, either.
Theft, vandalism, or carelessness can cause these items to become damaged or missing really quickly.
If this happens and the only copies of your files are on these hard drives, then your company will be in a negative situation.
If your company has situations where customers need to send in documents, photos or other files, then having the right data storage solution is quite important.
After all, today’s consumers are impatient and prefer options that don’t take a lot of time or are difficult to use.
Businesses that offer cloud computing uploads via text or email often experience better customer satisfaction and more of their clients adopt the practice of sending pertinent information when needed.
Wrap Up: There are Benefits to Choosing the Right Data Storage
As you can tell, having the right data storage type to suit your needs is crucial to your ability to run your business profitably, securely and with easy access for everyone within your organization.
With the dependence of digital information growing and more businesses adopting data-driven marketing strategies, the right storage solution is more important than ever.
And that’s especially true if your company has a large number of files, such as those that track and use customer data as part of their overall marketing strategy.
Are you looking to increase your organization’s use of data-driven marketing after you’ve found the ideal electronic storage solution?
We cover tons of best practices and tips in this installment of the Rock Content Magazine!