There will be a significant increase in paid cloud services over the next five years among small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), research by Edge Strategies suggests.
The research includes survey responses from IT decision-makers or influencers at more than 3,000 SMBs in 13 countries.
According to the results, paid cloud services are expected to double in five years, while the number of the world’s smallest companies using at least one paid cloud service will triple in the next three years.
“Gone are the days of large enterprises holding the keys to enterprise-class IT and services,” said Marco Limena, vice-president, Operator Channels, Microsoft.
“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.”
Cloud computing can deliver what SMBs need – less expensive operations and faster, better fusion of vital information to virtually any device. In fact, the research finds 59pc of companies now using cloud services report significant productivity benefits from information technology, compared with just 30pc of SMBs not yet using the cloud.
Of SMBs using cloud services today, 63pc of them expect to grow in sales in the next 12 to 18 months, while 55pc believe technology will power their growth.
Half of SMBs say cloud computing is going to become more important for their operations, and 58pc believe working in the cloud can make companies more competitive.