When I started up my new business, I knew that I would be working at home a lot as well as in the office. From a security point of view, keeping all my files on my laptop is madness, so I looked at cloud computing, eventually picking Google Apps for Business. While not perfect and it takes a bit of getting used to not using Microsoft products are using them all your life, I definitely won’t be going back. I’ve listed 11 reasons why I think Google’s Apps for Business is worth using.
It costs €4.10 a month. For that I get my email address (firstname.lastname@example.org is a gmail account), cloud storage and Google’s version of Word, Excel, Powerpoint as well as Forms.
The customer support provided by Google is out of this world. I have had to contact them a few times now. I register my problem and I get a call promptly and they stay with me until the problem is fixed. I then get follow ups to make sure everything is still alright.
Security is a huge issue these days when it comes to client files etc. I get the benefit of Google’s security, something I could never buy in a million years. My files are backed up in multiple facilities around the world. (Note: while Google’s security protects you against hackers, it doesn’t protect you against you destroying your own files. I use Spanning to back up my files as well, costing $40 a year).
Two people can work on the same document at the same time. This is a brilliant feature for project work. You just need to log on and multiple people can make changes to a document at the same time.
It doesn’t matter where I am, I can log into my Google Drive account and access all the files I can when working in the office. I can use my home laptop, work one, even my iPad and iPhone to access my files.
You can allow outside parties to access part of Google Drive. I have used this a few times and it’s so handy. I just opened up the relevant folder to them for a few hours, they got a link by email and copied what they needed.
30GB free storage. This is the total amount for your email and Drive accounts. Any Google Documents don’t count for this total. I have all my business files on Drive and still only using 7% of capacity! If I ever get to the stage that I need more storage, 100GB costs just $60 a year.
Because I am using Google, there are loads of companies making apps and services that I can link in with Drive and Gmail. My CRM service links my emails and Drive to the CRM account, so I can access it all very easily. I also have a project app, accounting, newsletter apps all linked to my account.
Using a Gmail account, I can use the multiple label feature. When using Outlook, it used to annoy me that I could only file an email in one folder, what if it applied to more than one account? With Gmail, I can file emails in multiple files.
I don’t use Microsoft Office but everyone I deal with does. Being able to save documents in 6 different formats means I won’t have to go out and buy Office. I can send documents by email or save them in Microsoft’s format, pdf .csv and a few others.
I can save files to Google Drive through File Explorer. My computer still uses Windows and I am not always online. I can download a Drive app to my laptop which puts my Drive file on File Explorer.