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Online Document Storage for Business

As companies grow to meet the needs of their customers, their need for online document storage rises. For many companies, keeping up with this need is a challenge, and data storage has become one of the biggest and most problematic parts of their IT budget.

Confirming this situation is an article in ComputerWeekly, which notes that "The demand for storage has grown more than 50 percent annually in recent years, a rate faster than the rapidly decreasing unit cost of storage. If storage costs continue their rapid rise, enterprises must manage storage more efficiently if they are to exploit new forms of information such as more detailed financial data, digital images in life sciences or video in media companies. It is a daunting challenge for IT managers to combat the rising volume, cost, and complexity of storage."

Companies have a lot of options when it comes to cloud file storage and sharing solutions. But not all options are created equally.

Citrix ShareFile is the only online document storage solution created for businesses of all sizes. ShareFile is easy to use and offers the security, admin controls and the customization you need to keep your documents safe. Enjoy access to your files any time, from any iOS, Android, Windows or Blackberry device, and if you ever need help, we’re available 24/7 by phone or email.

Keep reading to learn more about online document storage and how ShareFile can help you business store and protect valuable data.

What is online document storage?

Techopedia defines online data storage (or online document storage) as "a virtual storage approach that allows users to use the Internet to store recorded data in a remote network. This data storage method may be either a cloud service component or used with other options not requiring on-site data backup."

Basically, instead of storing data using a physical storage device (such as a USB, CD-ROM or external hard drive), data is stored on a server that is connected to a local network.

Comparing physical storage versus online storage

Although data doesn’t take up physical space, it does come with storage demands. And just as with physical items, data can be stored in many different places, but most physical storage options have cons that online storage options do not. Let’s take a closer look at some popular types of data storage and their limitations.

Physical document storage

  • Internal hard drives — Internal hard drives are data storage devices located inside of your computer. Any documents or files you have on your computer are automatically stored on your internal hard drive. While convenient, internal hard drives run the risk of crashing and acquiring viruses that can destroy your data. They also have limitations as to how much data they can hold.
  • External hard drives — External hard drives work the same way as internal ones, except they are plugged into your computer instead of being located within it. External hard drives are great for backing up your internal hard drive in the event of a crash, but they do have size limits, can be expensive and make it difficult to transfer data.
  • Flash drives — Flash drives or USB drives work like hard drives except they are small enough to fit in your pocket. While their small size makes them easy to transport, it does limit the amount of available storage, and they can be lost or misplaced more easily that other storage options.
  • CD-ROMs — A CD-ROM works similar to a flash drive. You simply insert one into your computer and upload your data, then you can eject the CD and store or transport it. The problem with CD-ROMs is that the stored data is “read-only” and cannot be changed once stored. Also, CD-ROMs are outdated — many of today's computers do not even have CD drives.

Ultimately, these storage options lack space to hold all of your documents, and they don't offer security and accessibility you need to streamline your workflow.

If your company is using an outdated physical storage device, you could be wasting money and space and putting the security of your documents at risk. Why jeopardize the safety of your company's data when you could have it all by simply switching to online document storage.

Online document storage (the cloud)

Cloud-based file-sharing companies such as ShareFile are transforming the way data is stored for the better. By using ShareFile to house your company's documents and data, you can avoid the storage limitations of flash drives, enjoy security that hard drives can't offer and easily move files among folders, co-workers and clients without having to carry around a book of CD-ROMs.

It's better in the cloud

The popularity of the cloud is rising. In fact, more than half of U.S. businesses use cloud-based storage instead of internal networks and servers to store documents and data. With so many advantages over more traditional storage methods, it isn't hard to see why. Some of the benefits of cloud document storage include:

Mobility and accessibility — Enjoy access anytime, anywhere with cloud-based storage. Access your files during non-business hours and from anywhere with an Internet connection with devices such as tablets, laptops and smartphones.

Unlimited storage — With the cloud, you won't have to delete or transfer old files to make room for new ones. The storage capacity is unlimited.

Transfer large files — Send large documents and files without having to work around email size restrictions.

Wipe your device remotely — In the event that your device is lost or stolen, you can wipe your data for immediate protection and restore it at a later time.

State-of-the-art security — The best cloud storage software offers security features to keep your data safe. Encryptions, customizable settings, multiple datacenter backups, file versioning and activity trackers are just some of the ways cloud-based storage allows you to rest easy.

Simple to use — It only takes a few mouse clicks to upload information to a cloud-based storage site, retrieve it or share it with a client or co-worker.

ShareFile, an industry leader in cloud-based storage, allows you to do all of these things and more. Our software helps businesses in all industries streamline how they access, send, receive, sync, edit, store and track files of any size.

Comparing online document storage services

Not all document storage services are created equally. Let's break down some of the industry's best cloud storage providers.

OneDrive — OneDrive's highest level plan is capped at 1 TB, but they provide ways to earn extra storage. But you shouldn’t have to work for extra space, especially when so many other document storage services offer unlimited storage.

Box — Box is a good cloud storage provider that offers unlimited storage for upgraded plans, but despite unlimited storage, Box’s file-sharing size is capped at 5 GB. This can limit your ability to send files to clients and co-workers. Choosing a cloud storage provider that won’t place a limit on sharing capabilities is key.

SugarSync — If you want to view an old or original version of a particular file, you can do that with SugarSync — but only for the five previous versions. Considering how many different versions a file may experience during the editing and production phases, this limit may cause important data to be erased or strip you of the ability to compare revised versions with originals.

Google Drive — Google Drive is a great free document storage tool, but only upgraded account holders can speak to a technical support representative 24/7. If you don't have an upgraded account, you'll have to use forums and articles in place of customer service.

Dropbox — Dropbox gives users a free 14-day trial, but is that really enough to determine if it is right for you and your business? A longer trial period would allow time to make sure the product is right for every aspect of your business.

The convenience and security of ShareFile

ShareFile has quickly become one of the best cloud storage providers on the market, and it isn't hard to see why.

Unlike other cloud storage providers, ShareFile offers unlimited storage, meaning you'll never have to delete files to free up space or worry about maximum file sizes. And ShareFile makes it easy for you to share files among co-workers and clients. Even our most basic plan comes with 10 GB of sharing capabilities, and upgraded plans can fetch up to 100 GB.

ShareFile also allows you to view more than just five previous versions of files. With our software you can access all file versions within the last 30 days. And our customer services representatives are available 24/7, no matter which ShareFile plan you choose.

Additionally, ShareFile offers a 30-day free trial — that's twice as many trial periods than what's offered by most other cloud storage providers.

Online document storage and protection

Support compliance with state data breach laws, HIPAA, CFPB and other industry regulations and maintain the highest code of ethics when exchanging personally identifiable information (PII) and protected health information (PHI) with ShareFile. Designed to help protect you and your clients, ShareFile lets you access, share, edit, store and track data in an easy-to-use, seamless, professional and cost-effective way so you can concentrate on getting more transactions completed quickly.

With ShareFile you can:

  • Send and receive encrypted files securely by email.
  • Enjoy the security that customizable permissions settings, SSL/TLS transfer protocols, up to 256-bit encryption and SSAE 16 Type II audited datacenters provide.
  • Send files securely to anyone — recipients don't have to have a ShareFile account to retrieve and access files.

ShareFile also utilizes firewalls and virus scanners to combat potential external and internal threats. Other additional security features we offer include letting you:

  • Keep track of all file activity in real time, so you know who retrieved your files and at what time they were downloaded. With ShareFile, your IT department also has the ability to restrict a third-party editor from creating unsecured copies of files.
  • Set expirations for links and data shared with mobile devices.
  • Remotely wipe any device to erase all passwords and data stored in ShareFile in the event a device is lost or stolen.
  • Rest easy with off-site backups. In disaster or unexpected system failure at your office, you'll be able to recover data easily from our servers.

Ease of ShareFile

With ShareFile you can streamline your workflow while increasing your security and accessibility with simple, trustworthy file sharing and storage.

Key benefits of our software include:

  • Send and receive files up to 100 GB in size.
  • Access, edit and share data from any computer or mobile device with an Internet connection.
  • Protect data with state-of-the-art security.
  • Enjoy an easy-to-use interface — no logins, passwords or usernames required for client access.

Streamline your workflow

Stop wasting time waiting for large files to send. With the ShareFile Plugin for Microsoft Outlook, you can send files and folders quickly and instantly track when a recipient downloads a file.

Start your 30-day free trial today

With ShareFile, you won't have to waste time and money or risk the security of your documents anymore. By signing up for a free 30-day trial, you can enjoy:

  • Unlimited storage
  • Five employee accounts that can be accessed at anytime
  • Security features, such AES 256-bit encryption and datacenter backups
  • Customized branding for your client portal done by our team of graphic artists
  • Phone and email support 24/7
  • The ability to sync files with your desktop
  • Plugin for Microsoft Outlook for seamless integration
  • Mobile device security and remote wipe

All you need to start enjoying simple and secure online document storage from ShareFile is your name, email address and a ShareFile password.

Upload files from any device or location to a secure datacenter, retrieve them when you need to make modifications or share them with colleagues or clients and return the files to the datacenter when you’re finished. Data storage has never been easier.

Click here to sign up for your free 30-day trial. If you've already done so and are ready to enjoy ShareFile on a higher level, check out our Personal, Team, Business and Enterprise plans to see which one is right for your company.

Ready to try ShareFile? It's free for 30 days. No credit card required.

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