When it comes to owning a business, there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes that we might not have realized prior to starting our own. This is something that I experienced even on a small scale when opening a virtual storefront to sell my artwork. When we make transactions, all of that data needs to be secured.
It might seem obvious, but when we get caught up in all of the other aspects of running one, often it gets swept under the rug. Today, I would like to remind you of why it is so important. You do not need to be a professional programmer or anything, either. Resources like this one, https://www.codecademy.com/article/what-is-programming, can give you a baseline. Otherwise, when it comes to data storage, keep reading!
What is a server?
While the word might be the same, I’m not talking about your waiter or waitress at your favorite restaurant. Rather, I am referring to the way that we store data for our computers. These are called servers, and they can have a variety of purposes. While it can be tempting to lump them all in together, there is a shocking amount of nuance here to tackle.
That all being said, I do think it would be difficult to cover them all in one article. Rather, I will highlight a few of them for you, and hopefully this spurs you to do some further research as well if I do not talk about one that could work for you! I always encourage deeper exploration like that.
The Various Types
As I mentioned above, a server data center can come in a few different forms. I mean this in both a physical sense as well as the functions that they can have. In terms of design, though, that will be something for you to decide. Certain companies offer more “aesthetically pleasing” options, but personally I find that functionality is something I value more. However, neither is the wrong way to look at it.
Something that a lot of online retailers offer to their customers are called proxy servers. Essentially, they serve as a barrier between them and the site that they are visiting. The goal is to help protect their sensitive data. Unfortunately, this is a very real issue – plenty of hackers and identity thieves try to harvest customer data from these sorts of organizations.
So, that might be something that you want to consider providing to help customers know that their information will be encrypted and hidden from you and any thieves out there. It is far from the only option on that front, but it is a fairly convenient and simple one. There are even guides on how to set them up.
Now, if you are looking to figure out a way to store your own valuable information, including sales figures, project prototype blueprints, or projections for the next year, you will want to search elsewhere. Typically, this form of a server is known as a database. There are even professionals entirely dedicated to creating databases and maintaining them. Of course, this does mean that they are a bit more complex to make and keep up with.
However, because they can be stored on a virtual machine or in a physical server, they are usually the go-to for most companies and organizations. While they might cost some money, being able to keep all of that data safe and secure is hard to put a price tag on. So, they are certainly something to consider if that applies to you.
For those of us who create mailing lists, mail servers are relevant to you. You might not have realized, but most people already use these ones on a daily basis. If you are interested, you can read up further on them on this page. In essence, they are what allows us to send emails between the different providers.
It may not appear to be immediately relevant based upon the other ones that I have written about today, but if you are a small business who does not offer some sort of newsletter already, I would advise you to reconsider that decision. It is a popular marketing gimmick for a reason, after all.
Since you do not have to do any of the programming for this type, that makes it quick and easy to send out the newsletter to everyone who has signed up to receive it. Why not utilize them for marketing, right?
Now, as I said before, there are still plenty of other types that exist out there. I leave that to you to learn more about, but hopefully the information that I have provided is still helpful for you! That especially goes to any aspiring entrepreneurs that are reading this.