Hardware isn't cheap, which is why it's important to manage it properly. Does your business keep the server separate from the main area? And do they also have proper server cooling?
Owning a server is a lot of upkeep, and can get stressful if you don't know what you're doing. That's why a lot of businesses are renting a server.
However, just like with any opportunity, you have to weigh out the pros and cons. Let's break down which option is better and what the cost differences are going to be.
Your Approach to Renting a Server
First, identify and understand what your needs are. This will help determine if you should invest in a server or rent.
A server needs to be able to run all of your applications properly and host a number of users. Plus, you have to answer the biggest question, Apple or Microsoft?
The next step is to define your budget because you have to factor in a monthly price, fees, and any possible extra features. How much RAM is necessary for a server?
Will you need a technical support team?
Renting gives you the opportunity to test the hardware. You've probably the heard the expression, "You need to test drive the car before you buy it." That applies to servers as well.
Maintaining a server can be extremely time-consuming. However, renting a server includes having the maintenance taken care of for you.
That sounds a heck of a lot less stressful, doesn't it?
If something goes wrong with the server you own, it's your responsibility to fix it.
Customers are relying on your site to be fast and responsive. How would it look if the server is always down?
With a rented server, all of that is the responsibility of the company you rented it from.
It'll feel awful nice to have that weight lifted off your shoulders. In the words of Homer Simpson, "Can't someone else do it?"
All of these elements come into play when determining to rent or buy:
On average, a server can be rented out for $100 to $300 per month.
Service monitoring is separate. That can run you anywhere from $75 to $400 per service per month.
Then, do you want a single processor or dual? A single can start from $99 a month and a dual from $249. A public cloud server runs from $19 a month.
For a small business, buying a server can cost you anywhere from $3,000 to $5,000. Depending on if you want all the bells and whistles, you're looking at much more.