What Are the Best Cloud Storage Solutions for UK Small Business Data?

March 8, 2024

In the modern digital era, data is the lifeblood of any business. It’s not surprising that businesses, especially small ones, are increasingly turning to cloud storage solutions to securely store and easily access their critical data. For UK small businesses, the choice of a cloud storage service is a crucial decision. It’s about finding a balance between cost, features, storage capacity, and security capabilities.

In this article, we’ll guide you through some of the best cloud storage solutions for UK small businesses, looking at important factors such as storage capacity, useful features, pricing, and the level of security they offer.

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Google Drive

Google Drive, a component of Google Workspace, is one of the most popular cloud storage services worldwide. It offers a wide range of features, from file sharing and collaboration to data backup and recovery. It’s a great solution for businesses that utilize Google Workspace’s other tools like Gmail, Google Docs, and Google Sheets.

Google Drive offers 15GB of free storage to begin with, but for businesses that need more, there are paid plans. The Google Workspace Business Starter Plan costs £4.60 per user per month and offers 30GB storage per user. For businesses that need more space, there are the Standard and Plus plans, offering 2TB and 5TB of shared storage, respectively.

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Security is a key feature of Google Drive. It uses 256-bit SSL/TLS encryption for files in transit and 128-bit AES keys for files at rest. Also, Google Drive’s robust admin console allows you to manage user accounts and control access to files.

pCloud

pCloud is a robust and secure cloud storage solution that offers generous storage plans. A standout feature of pCloud is its lifetime access option, where you can pay a one-time fee for a significant amount of storage, rather than a monthly or annual subscription.

pCloud’s storage plans start from £3.59 per month for 500GB, going up to £7.09 per month for 2TB. The lifetime plans start from £160 for 500GB, and £320 for 2TB.

pCloud emphasizes user-friendly, making it easy to upload, download, share, and access files. Furthermore, pCloud offers excellent security features, including 256-bit AES encryption for all files and the TLS/SSL channel protection.

iDrive

iDrive is a comprehensive cloud storage service that offers real-time backup, end-to-end encryption, and an easy-to-use interface. It’s a great solution for businesses that prioritize data backup and recovery.

iDrive’s business plan starts at £5.79 per month for 250GB. However, iDrive also offers a free plan with 5GB of storage, perfect for very small businesses or those just starting to use cloud storage.

iDrive offers continuous data backup, ensuring that your files are always up to date. It also provides historical versions of all files, so you can revert to a previous version if necessary. Security-wise, iDrive uses 256-bit AES encryption with an optional private key, ensuring that only you can access your files.

Dropbox Business

Dropbox Business is a popular choice among businesses for its ease of use, great collaboration tools, and robust security measures. Dropbox seamlessly integrates with many other popular business tools, such as Microsoft Office and Adobe, streamlining your workflow.

Dropbox Business offers a Standard plan for £10 per user per month, which provides 5TB of storage, while the Advanced plan costs £15 per user per month for unlimited storage.

Dropbox Business offers advanced features like Smart Sync and Dropbox Paper, which streamline collaboration and make file sharing easier. It also utilizes 256-bit AES encryption and two-step verification for security.

Microsoft OneDrive

Last but not least, Microsoft OneDrive is an excellent cloud storage solution for businesses that primarily use Microsoft Office tools. OneDrive is deeply integrated with Office 365, making it easy to store, share, and collaborate on Office documents.

OneDrive offers a range of plans starting from £3.80 per user per month for 1TB of storage, up to £7.90 per user per month for unlimited storage.

OneDrive provides features like Files On-Demand, which allows you to access your files without having to download them, and Personal Vault, a protected area within OneDrive for storing sensitive files. For security, OneDrive uses 256-bit AES encryption for files at rest and SSL/TLS encryption for files in transit.

It’s clear that there are numerous cloud storage options for UK small businesses, each with its unique features and benefits. When choosing a cloud storage solution, consider your business’s specific needs in terms of storage capacity, collaboration features, cost, and security. Remember, the best solution is the one that best fits your business needs.

Zoho WorkDrive

Another notable mention is Zoho WorkDrive. Part of the Zoho suite, it is a highly efficient and secure cloud storage service that’s suitable for small businesses in the UK. WorkDrive offers a team-centric approach to cloud storage, making collaboration and file sharing exceptionally easy.

Zoho WorkDrive offers a variety of plans to cater to different business requirements. The Team plan starts at £6.30 per user per month for 1TB of storage, while the Business plans go up to £16.30 per user per month for 5TB storage per user.

WorkDrive is integrated with other Zoho applications and office suites, thus offering a unified workspace for teams. It also supports real-time collaboration, allowing multiple team members to work on a document simultaneously.

From a security perspective, Zoho WorkDrive doesn’t lag behind. It offers SSL/TLS encryption for data in transit and uses AES-256 encryption for data at rest. Additionally, it provides features like two-factor authentication and an admin console for managing user access, thereby ensuring the security of your business data.

Box

Box is a well-established cloud storage service known for its robust security features, collaboration tools, and integration with popular business software. The service is designed to improve productivity and collaboration in businesses while ensuring data security.

Box offers a Business plan at £12.00 per user per month with unlimited storage, making it a suitable choice for businesses that require large amounts of storage space.

The cloud storage service includes features such as task assignment and progress tracking, version history, and real-time collaboration. These capabilities make file sharing and collaboration within teams seamless and efficient.

When it comes to security, Box uses knowledge encryption, providing 256-bit AES for data at rest and SSL/TLS for data in transition. It also supports multi-factor authentication and offers granular file permissions, ensuring that your files are well-protected from unauthorized access.

The best cloud storage solution for UK small businesses will largely depend on the specific needs of the company. Factors such as the volume of data, the level of collaboration required, budget, and data security all play a significant role in determining the most suitable service.

Among the options discussed, Google Drive stands out for businesses that heavily rely on Google Workspace. pCloud is a great choice for those looking for lifetime storage plans, while iDrive is perfect for businesses prioritising data backup. Dropbox Business offers excellent collaboration tools, and Microsoft OneDrive is the go-to for Microsoft Office users. Let’s not forget Zoho WorkDrive, which offers a team-centric approach to storage, and Box, known for its robust security features.

The best strategy is to assess your business’s needs comprehensively before settling on a cloud storage service. Consider trialling a cloud backup service before committing to a full year plan. This allows you to test the interface, features, and overall performance, ensuring you make an informed decision that benefits your business in the long run.

In conclusion, the search for the perfect cloud storage solution should not be rushed. Take the time to explore the available options, weigh their pros and cons, and select the one that best aligns with your business requirements and goals. Remember that the right cloud storage service can significantly contribute to your business’s efficiency, productivity, and overall success.