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How to Have an SSD Comparison Conversation with Clients

March 16, 2017

How to Have an SSD Comparison Conversation with Clients

As businesses leap (or are forced into) mobility and the cloud, it’s in your best interest to speak to them in language that relates the advantages to their business’s bottom line. The performance of SSD over HDD is all well and good, but it’s what you do with it that matters to businesses where time is money.

Time Is Money: It’s All About Productivity

Let’s look at the amount of time that a business’s workforce spends waiting for HDDs to boot up and access applications every day at workstations and on workstation-class notebooks. As examples that they likely haven’t considered, you can start by explaining that:

  • Every boot-up may take an average of 10 seconds for HDD-equipped devices, while it takes SSDs 1/10th of that time.
  • The same goes for the loss of processing speed when working with applications.
  • When you multiply that by every employee in every department, businesses can save 90 percent of the time wasted on boot-up and performance slowdowns with SSD over HDD, even in a small office.
  • The results represent a huge increase in productivity in a day, week, and year.
  • If your employees can see even a 10 percent increase in productivity when they are working, just imagine the potential profit increase from that productivity increase.

Performance, Space, Speed, and the Bottom Line

Having the comparison conversation with clients requires understanding that while their cost per GB may be higher (for now) with SSD, most businesses aren't STORAGE-constrained—they're PERFORMANCE-constrained. It’s all about the applications for businesses when it comes to productivity and performance.

This is where IOPS (input/output operations per second, which is an activity rate), I/O size (the bytes to transfer per IO), and bandwidth (the throughput, or data that are moved in a given time) come into play. Those applications need more I/O performance (IOPs, bandwidth, or lower response time/latency) than traditional HDDs provide.

The performance, space, and speed comparison should convey:

  • The astounding difference in speed between the fastest 15K RPM HDDs that support around 200 IOPS, while modern high-end SSDs declare around one million IOPS, with much higher bandwidth.
  • SSDs can be a great way for organizations to do IO consolidation to reduce costs in place of using many HDDs grouped together to achieve a certain level of   performance.
  • By consolidating the IOs off of many HDDs that often end up being underutilized from a space capacity basis, organizations can boost performance for applications while reducing or reusing HDD-based storage capacity for other purposes, including growth.

The Cloud, the Web, and Other Things

If your clients are cloud providers and/or businesses with busy ecommerce websites, SSD performance and the bottom line are directly linked. When data-driven sites generate hundreds of database queries and access content simultaneously, a 20-millisecond difference in information return can have a big impact on the bottom line.

Research shows that a delay of only four seconds in the loading of a virtual “shopping cart” alone translates into roughly a 20 percent loss in customers and sales. As one example, a recent infographic from marketing analytics solution provider Kissmetrics shows that:

  • 47 percent of consumers expect a Web page to load in two seconds.
  • 40 percent abandon a website that takes more than three seconds to load.
  • 79 percent of shoppers dissatisfied by website performance won’t buy from the same site again.

The Real Bottom Line: Cost Versus Profit

The market is within striking distance on cost between HDD and SSD. That being said, the comparisons you should be making for your clients should show what they stand to lose in terms of bottom-line results by waiting for prices to drop even more. In many business cases, you’ll lose far more potential income by waiting for the price to drop than you’ll gain.

By framing comparison conversations in ways that relate directly to a business’s performance and bottom line, they can see the benefits of SSD far more clearly. The need to act now comes down to competitiveness in the digital age where SSD performance, speed, and capacity directly relate to their bottom line.