Cloud Computing provides remarkable benefits to businesses. It allows enterprises to develop, test and produce their applications faster, with reduced capital expenditure (CAPEX), improved manageability and lower maintenance. All this enables the IT to adjust resources rapidly so that the ever fluctuating and unpredictable business demands are met.
The cloud computing provider that you choose determines whether your IT infrastructure deployment fails or succeeds. It is important to partner with the best Cloud Hosting service that has the right experience.
Here are the vital criteria to consider when looking for a prospective Cloud service provider:
User interface (UI) has become one of the most significant elements in gauging the efficiency of Cloud computing solutions. With the increasing scarcity of time and resources, a fine user interface can help simplify the steep learning curve that IT departments have to face during their organizational migration to a virtualized infrastructure. An easy-to-use UI in a cloud infrastructure has therefore become a requirement, rather than an option.
Service Level Agreement
Through the Service Level Agreement (SLA), the provider commits to respond in a timely manner whenever things go wrong. A standard SLA also offers a small percentage of your bill to cover for any losses during your website’s downtime. See if the provider has a Service Level Agreement; see if he is ready to work out and make the SLA acceptable, in case if you find it inadequate. Carefully check whether the responsibilities between the provider and your company are appropriately shared and are transparent. See what restitution the provider offers in the face of a disaster.
Account Set-up and Documentation
Nothing beats a good first impression. The best Cloud Hosting providers in the industry take this rule seriously and so they ensure a good first impression through their sign-up process. How do you identify that your service provider is the best? Here are a few tips:
- See if the pricing plans and offerings are clear and easy to understand.
- It should be easy to find the required info on time without having to dig it out from multiple website levels.
- See if the sales people listen to your requirements attentively and make appropriate and useful suggestions.
- The account and server setup have to be seamless and fast.
The level of Cloud compute and network performance, as well as the Cloud platform architecture varies from provider to provider, so do the application and database performance results. Most of the Cloud Hosting providers have computing resources of differing sizes to offer. Their offerings range between the smallest single-core instances and the largest multi-core mammoth-memory instances. However, storage IO — that determines your application’s performance in the cloud – may not vary much from one provider to the other. So, you might have to make a decision depending on your business’s current use of the amount of IOPS and network bandwidth.
A server kept in a secure room of your office building is as susceptible to hackers’ attack as any Internet-connected PC. Physical walls can no longer protect your important data. The safety of the data is only guaranteed if you can protect your server from Internet-based attacks. A professionally maintained system with firewalls, monitored constantly by proficient and experienced system administrators is your best defense.
Look for cloud hosting providers which offer consultation in designing and maintaining a highly secure environment. The best of Cloud Hosting providers make sure that the support offered meets your business’s needs.
The physical network infrastructure of your provider is an important factor in the overall performance. Do not ignore this step. Get an insight into the provider’s network infrastructure, performance, and data centre location, to ensure that it can support your company’s needs.
The reasons why knowing physical location is important is to learn about:
- Statute restrictions on the use of customer data
- Jurisdictional requirements in the event of a dispute
- Environmental factors to evaluate natural disasters
Knowing the provider’s cloud infrastructure can be crucial for your software developers. They might want to know how applications are written and deployed when using certain IaaS offerings. So, it is good to have a provider who offers infrastructure details during Cloud selection.
Several providers in the market claim to offer extraordinary levels of customer support, but not all Cloud providers are genuine on this promise, except a few. And they are the best Cloud Hosting providers.
The early cloud adopters were mostly software developers with sound technical knowledge, so they could make Cloud with very little tech support. Now that Cloud has penetrated organizations of all sizes and types, a ready tech support is a must.
Find out if the provider you want to choose offers free technical support, what his authentication policy is, and whether the person you talk to on the customer support is technically proficient. Which provider to choose will also depend on the requirement of your cloud deployment:
- A hands-off solution or personal attention?
- Is there a need for managed services or you team can internally manage your cloud?
It is vital to evaluate the long-term viability of a Cloud provider. Consider these factors:
- Has the company just started? Is it old enough?
- Does it have sufficient funding to remain financially secure?
- Are there any chances of its merger or acquisition?
Besides these eight factors, check if the providers you have shortlisted have a system to bill for each resource separately in simple and transparent units for the users to see the computing costs and buy only what they need. Before deciding that a certain company is your best Cloud Hosting provider, consider your specific resource requirements and check whether they are precisely being fulfilled. Also study the offer carefully to find out the hidden costs.
There is a major competition within the Cloud Computing industry and it is important for providers to create and maintain extraordinary references for long-term viability. Do not fail to ask the provider you have chosen for references that can particularly underscore service reliability, network performance, and quality of support. Ask for case studies and also review their website and media coverage. It is only after such a diligent research and meticulous evaluation that you will get the best Cloud Hosting provider for your business in the long term.