There are many cloud offerings these days, and getting an online presence is very easy. Most people purchase cloud offerings, but do not realize all the benefits they purchased. We often see people purchasing hardware solutions when they have already purchased a cloud solution that will do the same thing. (Phones, USB drives, etc.)

Meet Derek, he is a hair stylist that has decided to take his clients to his new salon that he is opening on a shoestring budget. Derek has joined AFEUSA and has followed the steps to become legal entity with a tax ID number and the correct federal, state and city business licenses and permits. Derek is now ready to push his brand through social media and the internet. He has brought a lot of clients with him due to his excellent work, however he still needs to grow the business.

Derek will be working with graphic designers to design print and Facebook ads for his business. He needs a way to keep track of files that will have multiple revisions. Derek does not use the typical word processing and spreadsheets that most corporate users would require. Derek just needs to occasionally create documents and spreadsheets that can be shared.

Derek has decided to purchase Google Apps also known as G Suite for $5 per month. Derek has also registered the domain name using GoDaddy as his registrar.

Now Derek will setup his salon phone to use a Google Voice number and purchase a XMPP compatible handset from Amazon for about $50. Derek has deiced to upgrade to the premium google voice service for an additional $10 per month.

Derek has configured email addresses for his new venture:, (this forwards to Derek), and (also forwards directly to Derek).

Derek has used the included offering of Google Sites to quickly configure a web page with the schedule of his salon, the location and basic information and pictures to show new customers his work. Derek has hires a consultant to configure his GoDaddy DNS for email and web to forward to his custom email and Google site.

Derek has configured folders in his Google Drive to share photos and print materials with various graphic designers he is working with to help promote his business. Since Derek is not storing any information that may be subject to US policy if the data leaves US soil he can feel confident in using Google Drive to safely and securely share files.

Derek has downloaded the Google Drive software on his laptop and salon workstation so files are backed up to his Google Drive cloud and automatically synchronized with his laptop. This allows Derek to keep up with his busy schedule of cutting hair and meeting with all his marketing consultants.

Derek total expenses to get up and running with is computing needs:

  • $10 per year for the domain name
  • $5 per month Google Apps fee for his: custom email addresses and email service, file sharing, website and web site hosting and computer backups
  • $10 per month for upgraded Google Voice over IP (VoIP)
  • $30 per month for cox or Comcast high speed internet
  • $150 one-time setup fee to the consulting group

If you have any additional cloud or Google Apps questions, feel free to contact, AFEUSA members get a discount on consulting services.