What is Cloud Scalability? (And how to use it to grow)
As cloud computing continues to evolve, companies can use the technology to scale their operations efficiently.
One of the most important developments in IT over the last decade has been the rise and advance of cloud technology.
With cloud computing, companies can effectively outsource their data storage, hosting and processing needs at the push of a button, providing them with a level of flexibility that could only be dreamed of in the not-so-distant past.
And as shall be seen in this article, with Cloud Elasticity – a closely related dimension of Cloud Scalability – this process can even be automated further, and used for a type of real-time scalability that is changing the meaning of efficiency in backend operations, particularly when it comes to short term fluctuations in web traffic.
What is Cloud Scalability?
Cloud Scalability refers to the process of using cloud resources to either expand or reduce IT resources in order to quickly react to fluctuating business demand.
Before the rise of the cloud, companies that wanted or needed to increase the capabilities of their websites or apps to host traffic would need to physically expand their servers, which was not only both expensive and time-consuming, but could also quickly backfire if a change in the market led to reduced IT requirements.
Similarly, data storage used to involve high equipment and energy costs, as well as constant in-house vigilance of IT security experts to guard sensitive information.
Now, thanks to advancements in technology and much faster internet speeds – which will be taken to another level with the rise of 5G – these processes can be realized through instantaneous, pre-programmed interactions with a cloud server.
Cloud providers such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Oracle Cloud Platform and Google Cloud Platform all offer a wide range of different cloud integration packages and services for businesses to use for their data and computing needs.
This is providing amazing new possibilities for companies that may need to respond quickly to changing market demand for their services or products.
For example, during the onset of the Covid-19 crisis, many businesses were forced to shut their brick-and-mortar stores and to quickly transition to e-commerce sales. Others that were already involved in the e-commerce segment quickly found their IT infrastructure to be insufficient in meeting the surge in demand for their services.
If that had occurred when cloud computing was not yet available, it would have meant investing in new, expensive equipment such as servers and data storage, hiring technicians to install the hardware, and integrating it with existing systems. And if and when internet traffic to a company’s site subsided, that might leave a company with a large and expensive IT infrastructure that they may no longer have a real need for.
With cloud scalability, all of that wouldn’t be a problem. A company could quickly integrate their software assets with a cloud service and scale at the push of a button. Once demand had stabilized or subsided, cloud use could be adjusted accordingly.
How to use Cloud Scalability to Grow Efficiently
As cloud computing technology has evolved and the industry has become more competitive, cloud platforms have been innovating the ways that customers can use their services.
One of the most exciting developments to emerge from the space recently is Cloud Elasticity. This is similar to Cloud Scalability, but also different in certain important respects.
Cloud Scalability can be considered as a means to respond to changing market and business demands over the medium to long term, by taking on additional computing power and data storage capabilities on the cloud.
In contrast, Cloud Elasticity refers to a process of pre-programming a dynamic reaction to short-term fluctuations in system demands to either expand or reduce cloud usage.
For example, a website that sees wide fluctuations in traffic over the course of a normal day can use a cloud provider’s elastic package to automatically expand and reduce cloud usage when pre-defined traffic and data usage thresholds are met.
This allows companies to never pay for more data usage than they actually require, while also providing the flexibility to quickly respond to surges in demand without the threat of their application or website crashing if and when too many visitors attempt to access it.
However, Cloud Elasticity is more useful for short term fluctuations that occur within a predictable margin.
If a company wants to be able to expand cloud usage significantly – for example as may happen if it suddenly expands to new markets or embarks on an ambitious, successful advertising campaign that significantly boosts its traffic – then using more long-term Cloud Scalability packages will often be the better choice.
The Bottom Line: The Sky is the Limit
The fact that most companies no longer need to acquire large, expensive and high-maintenance internal computing and data storage systems is now a given.
Cloud services have advanced to such a degree that even extremely data-intensive technological processes such as self-driving cars and industrial robots will be able to access the large amounts of data they require from the cloud, allowing them to execute sensitive, split-second actions in real time.
However, the uses don’t end there. For smaller companies that are seeking cost-effective ways to respond to changing market conditions – and to never miss an opportunity to scale in order to fuel their growth – using cloud service scale down without the risk of losing the value of a sizable investment in infrastructure is obviously a very attractive offer.
These technological developments are providing the economic ability for startups to grow and compete with industry giants by bringing down the costs of market entry and expansion.
However, while all company owners might love for a reason to scale their business up – and be more comfortable in the knowledge that they can – the simple truth is that they will first need a successful digital offering and infrastructure in order to rationalize such a move.
That’s where Bocasay, offshore outsourcing company comes in. We work with companies from across a wide range of industries to build and improve their digital capabilities, providing them with the foundation for growth – and the chance to make the most of the exciting possibilities of technologies such as Cloud Scalability. Our teams take care of your offshore it projects.
Want to find out how we can turn your digital dream into a reality? Contact us and we can start our conversation.