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.
Reliable broadband is essential to all modern businesses and you may be wondering if spending a little bit more for a specialized business broadband deal is actually worth it.
In this guide, we’ll help you decide if it’s worth investing in a business broadband package, the differences between home and business broadband, and how the different services may benefit your growing company.
Business broadband is designed to handle a larger demand, whether that be set up in an office for several employees or operating an EPOS/ card machine system.
Higher speeds are required to manage the data processing of these tasks efficiently.
According to the ONS, the three largest contributors to e-commerce sales are wholesale, retail and manufacturing. However, the latest figures show that 20.4% of UK businesses are still operating on broadband speeds between 10 - 30 Mbps. Speeds that would directly impact productivity and reliability.
Business broadband packages come with some features many businesses find useful and are much more comprehensive than home broadband lines.
In theory, yes. However, you may run into some issues depending on your company’s needs and demands online.
For example, if you’re operating from a store and are regularly processing card payments using an EPOS system - then business broadband offers some great features.
Many business broadband providers have a minimum service guarantee. This often includes a guarantee of when they will have your connection back up and running due to any faults. Some providers will even include compensation for any loss of business. Service guarantees for home broadband are much less common.
Business broadband providers are very aware that there’s a risk of revenue loss if there’s any downtime due to network faults. Customer support with some highly-reputable providers will often include 24-7 support so you can get immediate support in the event of an outage.
Business broadband connections come equipped with better-graded security software optimised to prevent malware attacks.
Some commercial broadband providers prioritise traffic over home broadband customers. This means that you will experience faster speeds during peak hours in comparison to home broadband customers close by.
You’ll also be given a more powerful router capable of handling the needs of a modern business. This is essential if you have premises that experience connection issues in certain places within the building.
It is not common knowledge that a static IP address is better for businesses.
An IP address is a unique number to identify your computer. This means every time you surf the internet at home your IP address changes as it is dynamic.
Static IP addresses however allow businesses to host their server, which is essential for any company that needs to receive large files securely. You will also be able to host your website and connect to your business computer remotely from another location.
You may have identified some scenarios where your company may benefit from investing in business broadband - but is it offering good value?
The answer largely depends on how your business operates.
Business broadband packages are more expensive than their home broadband counterparts - particularly if you start exploring a leased line (but that’s only good value in certain situations and very large companies).
So, the main point of purchasing a business broadband package is to access a faster and more reliable connection. Thus, there’s only a strong argument to purchase business broadband if any of the benefits above solve any issues you are having or are anticipating.
If one of these scenarios could happen to your business, it may be worth considering a commercial broadband package:
Whilst these scenarios do not cover every commercial scenario for a business that may require a business broadband connection, they offer some context of the benefits it may offer your business.
Cheap isn’t always cheerful when you run into problems and you rely on a connection to pay the bills. If something goes wrong, you could end up missing out on crucial revenue. Business broadband is predominantly more expensive because of the fast customer support.
Whilst customer support is the main selling point for 100% of businesses, the other features that come with commercial broadband can be incredibly useful too. One particularly popular feature is that they come with multiple branded email addresses for more professional communication with your customers. For example, [email protected]
For the most part, it isn’t likely to be worth it. If you’re working remotely from home, your office/ place of work will have a business broadband connection with remote features active. As long as you have a fast internet connection to complete your work efficiently, there is no need to spend extra money on upgrading.
However, in certain scenarios, it may be worth the investment. Professional services and companies that rely on live feeds (e.g. investment trading) may want to invest in a more secure and faster connection. It largely comes down to how the business operates.
A guide to help you get your business broadband working more efficiently.