More than 600,000 businesses are going to start this year in the US. And even though most of these businesses won’t be tech or internet-based companies, almost all of them will need to store information online.
From images and website files to documents, customer information, and much more, filing cabinets have been done away with thanks to modern cloud storage.
With the right cloud-based storage system, you can access your files and data from any device, at any time, no matter where you are in the world.
What is Amazon S3? Amazon S3 storage is one of the most robust cloud storage options in the world. Everything is bigger and faster when it comes to Amazon, and their version of storage solutions is no different.
Wondering why your small business would benefit from AWS cloud? Read on below to see if it’s right for you.
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Why Your Business Needs Cloud Storage
A long time ago, most office buildings were filled floor to ceiling with filing cabinets. All of a business’s valuable information needs to be printed out and stored in a physical filing cabinet.
When you need to access a specific document, you’d have to initiate a search that could take minutes, if not hours, depending on how many files you have in store.
But then modern computers came around, and information was instead stored on hard drives, floppy disks, and a computer’s internal storage system. And while this saved money by not needing to print everything out for physical storage, it was still a big hassle.
Sharing files between users and computers wasn’t easy. Large files would need to be exported to a thumb drive, plugged into a different computer, and uploaded.
The process was cumbersome, and the possibility of losing or damaging the thumb drive was real.
Today, however, any business that values efficiency uses cloud-based storage for the bulk of its internal data.
Files can be uploaded to the cloud, and any device with access to your server can find and download the files as needed. For businesses with large teams, it means employees can access files when they need them, rather than when it’s convenient for someone to share them.
It boosts productivity, saves time, and as a result, saves money.
What Is Amazon S3?
Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) is Amazon’s version of cloud storage. While this service was made popular by companies like Dropbox or Google Drive, Amazon had been developing their own service for quite a while before releasing it to the public.
To use Amazon’s cloud storage, you’ll create buckets, similar to folders on a computer. You can have up to 100 buckets in your cloud account. Every file you upload needs to go into one of these buckets. You can store as many files within these buckets as you want.
Larger companies can request a larger bucket amount, which may increase your limit to 1,000.
You can store files up to 160 GB in your buckets. If you need to occasionally store larger files, you’ll need to use additional tools to make it happen.
Stored By Region
Amazon’s storage service is unique in that each bucket that you create is stored in a specific geographic location. If your company is based in a physical location, it makes sense to store your buckets in the region closest to you.
Other companies creating buckets in the same region won’t be able to create buckets with the exact same name, as all buckets stored in each region need to be unique.
Storing data geographically makes it easier and faster to access the data you need most, without having to request information from halfway across the globe.
How to Use Amazon S3 on a Mac?
You can access Amazon S3 through your web browser. That means you don’t need to have any specific software downloaded to your computer or phone in order to upload or download files.
However, accessing your files without using your browser can boost productivity, and streamline the process of finding and adding files.
You can do this on Mac using the Forklift client from Amazon, which is designed to work with the Mac OS.
Who Can Benefit From Amazon S3?
Anyone can get started with Amazon S3 today. Amazon offers a free tier. It includes 5 GB of S3 storage for 12 months.
This gives you the ability to test out the service, to see if it works better for your needs than other free storage service providers.
After your free plan, or once you decide you need additional storage, Amazon S3 grows with you. You pay per GB of data, depending on which tiering system your business needs.
The basic plans start at $0.023 per GB and decrease with the more storage that you utilize.
Individuals enjoy the level of flexibility offered with Amazon S3. Small businesses in almost any industry also benefit from the service, as they find that they have more and more files and data to store every single month.
While they won’t need to access most of these files again in the future, losing them could cause expensive problems in the future.
Lastly, corporations, including some of the world’s largest companies, can use Amazon S3 to store everything ab business needs, making it accessible to teams and employees all over the world.
Learning the Basics of AWS
Want to take advantage of Amazon’s storage solutions, but don’t know where to start? Amazon offers hundreds of free, online courses to help you learn all about the service and how to make it work for your business.
You can use these resources to equip your entire team, to ensure everyone uses the service properly and keeps information organized in the most efficient manner possible.
Using the Best Possible Tools
So, what is Amazon S3? It’s one of the most robust cloud storage platforms available on the web today. While there’s plenty of competition in the cloud storage industry, Amazon is one of the most reliable players, from individuals storing personal data to massive, global corporations looking for the lowest cost service.
And with a free plan in place, there’s no reason not to try it out for yourself.
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