These days, more and more businesses are seeking cloud providers as they move operations like email and document storage to the cloud.

It makes sense.

First, this is more economical. Also, using the cloud also makes it easier for remote employees to check in, access information and collaborate online.

So where do you begin to search for the best cloud server?

Finding The Best Cloud Server

With so many companies offering cloud computing solutions, it can be hard to find the perfect cloud server.

But there are definitely some things you’ll want to look for in your search.

User interface (UI)

UI needs to be heavily considered when comparing cloud computing solutions. Pay attention to the provider’s website.

Their price plans should be simple and easy to understand. Prospective customers should be able to set up a server, have it running and get the information they need quickly.

Look for a cloud provider that offers the most customer-friendly UI. This will also make it easier as your IT environment becomes more virtual.

Also, you should be able to access your business information in the cloud from any place and at any time by simply signing in to your provider’s client login page. And you should have the ability to this on your laptop, smartphone, tablet or any other device.

Cloud services provided

There are different kinds of cloud services.

On the basic data storage side, there are software-based cloud offerings for online documents, photos and video storage. There is also online accounting. And then there’s online customer relationship management (CRM).

If you need more than basic data storage, the best cloud server will come from providers that offer a range of general-purpose cloud computing services.  This can be things such as IT networking infrastructure with on-demand access to virtual servers, applications, and software.

Pricing structure

The rule of thumb is – pay only for what you use.

The pricing scheme should be pay-as-you go right from the start. Then, you should have the option to add services as needed. Depending on the vendor, these fees may be charged hourly, monthly, semi-annually or annually.

Keep in mind that most reputable providers will NOT charge a large upfront cost. So steer clear of those who do.

Security of cloud

It’s important to cover all your bases on this matter.

Look for security measures like firewalls, anti-virus detection, multi-factor user authentication and data encryption. Do they perform routine security audits?

Ask the provider about who will have access to your data in the cloud. Are employees required to go through background checks to weed out cyber criminals and identity thieves?

Security of the provider’s data center

And then ask them WHERE the data center is. Ask the provider how the data center is protected from natural disasters like fires, floods, earthquakes and storms. How they safeguard themselves against thieves?

Look for SSAE 16 certification.

This means that the provider’s systems, data, and products are compliant with the industry security standards for customer access and privacy, data center physical security and data redundancy.

Tech support and customer service

Call the support department of the cloud providers under consideration and find out what levels of support they provide in the event that something goes wrong.

Without exception, technical support – free or otherwise – should always be available online or by phone 24 hours per day, every day. This includes holidays.

There are other factors to consider when determining the best cloud server. If you have some tips you’d like to add, please feel free to share.