Today's SMBs believes in themselves and also in the cloudy abilities of the Cloud Computing. In an independent survey, 76 Percent of SMBs agree that they are the backbone of the economy and almost half of them (53 Percent) expect sales figure to grow within next 12-18 months. But, the most important finding remains the awareness of the Cloud Computing. Majority of them are increasingly moving to the cloud.
To understand the SMB-Cloud story, one need to know that the USA-SMB cloud services market grew 25 percent in 2011 to reach $15.1 billion. Globally, that figure is set to hit $68 billion by 2014, representing a CAGR of 26 percent. AMI research predicts- SMB Cloud Market in Asia-Pacific is expected to reach US$16.5B in 2012. The market for cloud solutions will grow at more than twice the rate of traditional ICT technologies in 2011 in these markets. In addition, this region is expected to lead worldwide expansion of cloud computing markets.
Cloud computing is able to deliver the crucial IT needs for any small and midsize businesses, for say-cheaper operational infrastructure and opex agility. The number of very small companies (2-10 employees) using paid cloud services will triple in the next three years. They are growing more comfortable with cloud services. 65% expect to be using cloud email services in the next 2-3 years. They think the cloud is important. 50% agree that cloud computing is going to become more important for businesses such as theirs. [source: Microsoft-Operator Channels Cloud Survey 2012]
Marco Limena, vice president-Operator Channels, Microsoft stated in the press statement, how the SMBs are has transformed themselves into the backbone of the economy. He says, "Gone are the days of large enterprises holding the keys to enterprise-class IT and services." The cloud levels the playing field for SMBs, helping them compete in today's quickly changing business environment, by spending less time and money on IT and more time focused on their most important priority -- growing their businesses.
But with this screen of advantages, comes serious concerns for SMB-Cloud Computing. Security remains the prime concern for SMBs. 70% want to know where their data is located. Only about 20% believe that data is less secure in the cloud than it is in their on-premise system.
On the question of- Why will companies move to the cloud? The prime driver’s still about lowering costs and increasing productivity for IT operations. Besides, these two dominant combination of factors that drives SMB-Cloud movement, 44 percent of them still believe that cloud services are unproven ang, therefore, too risky. Survey finds that around 33 percent of the SMBs expect to use a cloud service for billing and accounting in the span 2–3 years, experiencing a rise of up 94 percent from current level. About 25 percent of the SMBs expect to use a CRM cloud service. But the greatest rise will be for online back-up (cloud) from current level of 22 percent upto 49 percent, encountering a whooping rise of 111 percent.
Although cloud provides several colorable advantages, Cloud adoption is restricted by lack of time and resources. More than half of them (60 percent) feels, not only SMBs lack appropriate partners or processes for implementation they still cannot find the set of resources to implement cloud and other new applications. Their second opinion says- they do have resources, but just haven’t had the time so that they can initiate those processes.
When it comes to hosting, SMBs method are mixed. Since service-hosters such as cloud providers are not always well-known, the default choice for SMBs is to consider ISVs as their primary choice. However, SMBs may opt for other local alternatives, many SMBs want a local provider that can host and operate the services they need. Of the surveyed SMBs, less than 10 percent of them consider their hosting provider as their first choice, compared with a software vendor and 12 percent from a local provider.