Small Business Broadband Guide
Selecting the right business broadband deal is crucial to the operation of any company. Here's what you need to know.
Broadband allows businesses to communicate with local and even international customers over the phone, the internet, and other digital methods of communication.
In our digital world, businesses need reliable broadband to stay afloat. All kinds of sectors rely on the power of broadband to spread their message and expand their businesses. But which is the best business broadband?
Business owners will have heard of Sky business broadband and Virgin business broadband. These big-name broadband suppliers promise excellent connectivity, but do they meet customer expectations? Our experts compare Sky and Virgin based on packages, speeds, customer service, and even incentives.
Use our broadband deal generator to compare business broadband across the board.
Sky and Virgin are both telecommunications giants. Sky was founded in 1990, and Virgin Media was founded in 2006. Between them, they have over 45 years of experience in the industry and over 50 million customers across the UK.
With these impressive figures, it is no wonder that business owners assume that they will provide the best business broadband.
It is important to remember that Sky business broadband and Virgin business broadband marketing teams have large budgets. They can smooth over poor customer reviews and connectivity.
Aside from that, reputable broadband suppliers might not cater to every kind of business. A supplier can deliver on speeds and prices, but fail to tailor their packages to small, medium, and large businesses.
For a truly tailored experience, keep reading.
Related article: What is the difference between business and home broadband?
It is no secret that the best business broadband suppliers offer packages. Packages are perfect for business owners who want hassle-free, comprehensive services.
Sky business broadband packages are designed to support business owners who want long-term contracts. Both the Essential and Pro packages span 24 months.
The Essential package promises Superfast download speeds, which means that business owners can get between 24Mbps and 300Mbps depending on the location of their premises. Unlimited UK calls, no in-contract package price increases, network-level phishing and malware protection, and hassle-free plug & play setup also come as standard with this package.
The Pro package is exclusive to online customers. It promises ‘ultra-reliable business broadband’, 4G internet backup, and unlimited UK calls. Business owners who choose this package can also expect free installation and the UK’s only business-grade 4G backup.
Virgin business broadband packages attract a range of customers. This supplier stays a step ahead of the competition by creating tailored deals. 25 million businesses across the world rely on Virgin’s ‘Voom’ packages for download speeds of up to 400Mbps, upload speeds of up to 40Mbps, a dynamic IP, and 24-hour resolutions.
Business owners can choose from a sliding scale of Voom packages. All the packages are available on 24-month contracts.
Voom 600 offers download speeds of up to 600Mbps, upload speeds of up to 50Mbps, one dynamic or static IP, and 16-hour resolutions.
Voom 800 is the cheapest package that offers more than one static IP. Customers can choose from one dynamic IP or up to 5 static IPs. They can also expect download speeds of up to 800Mbps, upload speeds of up to 50Mbps, and 16-hour resolutions.
Voom Gig1 is the last broadband deal that is available to business owners. It is also the most expensive and fastest deal. It promises download speeds of up to 1000Mbps, upload speeds of up to 50Mbps, a single dynamic IP or up to 5 static IPs, and 12-hour resolutions. Quicker resolution times are invaluable for business owners who want to stay one step ahead of network errors and glitches.
Winner: Virgin business broadband cinches the win! Sky cannot match Virgin’s range of tailored packages.
Customers expect fast broadband speeds from big-name suppliers like Sky and Virgin.
Sky business broadband packages promise Superfast broadband. The Essential package offers download speeds of up to 76Mbps and upload speeds of up to 19Mbps. Sky is quick to remind prospective customers that their speeds will vary based on location and a number of other factors. The same is true of the Pro package, which offers download speeds of up to 150Mbps and upload speeds of up to 28Mbps.
Sky’s speeds might seem impressive, but they pale in comparison to Virgin. True to its name, Virgin’s Voom range guarantees some of the best business broadband speeds on the market.
Voom 400 promises download speeds of up to 400Mbps and upload speeds of up to 40Mbps. The cheapest, most basic Virgin package offers better speeds than Sky’s Pro package.
Voom 600 and Voom 800 offer even better speeds. Voom Gig1 is the most expensive package and it guarantees download speeds of up to 1000Mbps and upload speeds of up to 50Mbps.
For even better business broadband speeds, business owners should consider leased lines.
Winner: Virgin business broadband wins again! This supplier offers download and upload speeds that Sky cannot compete with.
The price of a broadband package can make or break a sale. Business owners across the UK know that there are better speeds, more comprehensive deals, and cheaper packages just over the horizon.
Luckily, both Sky and Virgin are transparent about their prices.
The cheapest Sky package is the Essential deal which comes in at £16.95. The second and most expensive Sky package is £26.95. These prices do not account for 20% VAT.
Even the cheapest Virgin business broadband deal is more expensive than the most expensive Sky deal. Voom 400 is £33 a month, Voom 600 is £42 a month, Voom 800 is £51 a month, and Voom Gig1 is £60 a month. All these prices are subject to 20% VAT.
Winner: Sky business broadband wins the battle, but it is important to remember that the best business broadband might not be the cheapest.
Suppliers are beginning to understand the importance of creating tailored services for small, medium, and large businesses.
Sky is best suited to small and medium businesses. Business owners can only choose from two different packages. The Essential package promises speeds that are ideal for small teams, and the Pro package is perfect for medium-sized teams.
Virgin has created Voom packages for medium and large businesses. The cheapest Virgin business broadband deal has maximum download speeds that are more than quadruple the maximum download speeds of Sky’s cheapest deal. Voom Gig1, Virgin’s priciest package, has download speeds of up to 1000Mbps and upload speeds of up to 50Mbps.
Winner: This round is a draw. Both Virgin and Sky business broadband deals are suitable for different business needs.
It is important to scope out broadband suppliers before committing to a 24-month contract. Even the best business broadband suppliers have poor customer service ratings. At Love Energy Savings, we use Trustpilot to gain an accurate representation of customer satisfaction levels.
Sky has 1.5/5 stars on Trustpilot and an average rating of bad. Over 8,500 customers have written a review for a range of Sky services. Business owners should be aware that some of the reviews on this account do not apply to business broadband.
Only 10% of Sky customers think that the services are excellent, whereas 82% think that the services are bad. Positive reviewers say that the customer service support is brilliant, but negative reviewers dispute this. They talk about WiFi boxes that do not work, long phone calls, and unhelpful representatives.
Some businesses create multiple Trustpilot accounts to make separate spaces for different customers. Virgin is one of these businesses. For this article, we will look at the Virgin Media business account.
Over 600 Virgin business broadband customers have given the company 1.2/5 stars on Trustpilot and an average rating of bad. Only 3% of customers think that the services are excellent, and an overwhelming 94% think that the services are bad. Excellent reviewers are happy to report that they have had no technical issues, whereas negative reviewers claim that they have had ‘absolutely appalling customer service.’
A representative from Virgin has replied to some, but not all, positive and negative reviews.
Winner: Sky business broadband just about cinches the win because it has an overall higher rating.
New customer incentives can make all the difference. Incentives might take the form of cash, but most of the time broadband suppliers offer vouchers or money off existing deals.
Prospective Sky business broadband and Virgin business broadband customers should not expect new customer incentives. As of now, neither supplier offers incentives for business owners who want to make the switch.
Winner: This round is a draw.
So, who wins the title of the best business broadband provider?
Neither supplier wins, because both have distinct qualities that are suited to different business needs.
Small and medium businesses who want reasonable rates should opt for Sky business broadband. Large businesses might struggle to keep up with their day-to-day operations if they settle for Sky’s Essential or Pro packages. Instead, they should opt for Virgin business broadband for massive speeds and a wider range of packages.
Interested in comparing your business broadband options? Visit our business utilities comparison page and put your details into the generator. Better broadband deals are just a few clicks away.