How Many Small Business Servers Do I Need?

Small business servers are a must have for companies trying to keep up to date with the ongoing technology needs of a small business. Servers encourage collaboration, enhance record keeping, facilitate easier communication and generally make things easier. With shared drives, there's no need to hassle with email attachment limits and other problems along the way.

How many servers does my business need?

For companies seeking servers for limited uses, one server may be all you need. For instance, if you're looking for an easy way to share documents with the office, but have hosted email and website storage, then one server may be enough. It may even be enough for email and shared drives. However, this depends on the size of storage needed and the amount of email coming in. It may be that, with higher email volumes, you may want a separate server. This is especially true for companies that might be working with public records, where storing emails for a period of time may be required by law.

However, this also changes when it comes to who your web hosting provider is. Is your web host off site, or do you want it in house? If you want it in house, you may want a separate server, especially to minimize potential problems with other server resources when accessing the website, and to minimize potential data theft in the case of a hacking intrusion.

In-House vs. External

There's an important component to the search for servers to realize. In-house servers require maintenance by your staff. This isn't just the problems of when something goes wrong, it's in the prevention of those problems, and ensuring that problems don't arise in the first place. It's making sure the software to protect those computers is the right software, and that consistent access, whether by employees or web customers, is continuously upheld.

In other words, it's a lot of time and work. And in some small businesses, companies have more valuable ways to spend their time than fretting about these sorts of things.

It's the exact reason so many people are turning to Cloud services. You'll still have to think about the number of servers you want, but Cloud services take out the most painful parts, allowing your company to focus on the important work.

One thing to keep in mind: if your company has been using a web host rather than an in-house server for email and website storage, you've already been using the Cloud. But with Cloud services, you may be able to centralize all your company's needs under one service. A dedicated web and email server could sit on a stack next to your company's shared drive. Another dedicated server could be added for documents of special sensitivity.

But by moving to a Cloud service, you're letting the other company handle the maintenance of servers, the troubleshooting of lost data, scheduling of back-ups and other things important to your business.

So when deciding on in-house servers vs. the cloud, remember your needs, what you do and don't want to do with it, if you want dedicated web servers, how much you want to pay.

Micah Pratt
Written by
Micah Pratt
In her seven years working in digital marketing, Micah Pratt has worked with several start-up websites providing SEO, content strategy, and content marketing support. Currently in her role as the online marketing manager for Business.org, Micah focuses mainly on helping small business owners make financially smart business decisions.
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