10 things to consider when choosing a broadband provider for your business
Choosing the right broadband provider is vital for any business. However, it can be tricky to find a provider with the right package for you. Make a bad choice and you could end up paying over the odds or left with cripplingly slow internet speed. Here are some of things you should consider when making a decision about your broadband provider.
1) Download Limits – Ideally you want to find the most suitable download limit, at the best price. For larger businesses, unlimited download limits will be a no-brainer, while smaller companies may be able to save on set limits.
2) Location – Ensure you choose a provider with a high quality of service in your specific area. A good deal and package is no use to you if the coverage in your area is poor. If your premises are located in a rural setting, you may need to seek out specialist rural providers to ensure that you receive a reliable service.
3) Cost – Ultimately, you get what you pay for. Therefore, paying that little bit extra for your broadband means you can reduce the chance of connection issues going forward. If your business relies heavily on internet access, then weigh up whether you can afford to pay less for your broadband. However, if internet speed is not fundamental to the running of your business, then you might be in the position to cut back the costs.
4) Cloud Storage – If you plan on storing a lot of files in the cloud, then you need to ensure that your broadband will be able to handle it. The amount of space you require depends on the size of your business and the amount of users there will be. Limited cloud space could be extremely frustrating, so make sure you will have plenty of space by enquiring beforehand with your broadband provider.
5) Customer Service – For businesses that are predominantly online, having tech support available from your broadband provider is absolutely crucial. If the internet is slow or down, you need to know that someone will be there to help, or else your business could really suffer.
6) Speed – There is little point in choosing the fastest and most expensive speed if you are not going to need it. If your business does not rely on the speed and quality of the internet connection, then you could save money by picking a package that meets the needs of your business, rather than the very best available.
7) Size – By undertaking a data audit you can anticipate the type of broadband package you will require. Consider the amount of staff you have and also if there will be any changes to your needs in the future. If you are going to be investing heavily in online technologies in the future, then you may need a connection that will cover any future increases in usage.
8) Contract Length – The last thing you want is to be tied down to a long term contract knowing that you have made the wrong choice. Consider whether what you are choosing is right for your business and that it will suffice for the length of the contract.
9) Security- Internet protection is an essential for any business and your broadband provider can help with this. Many business broadband providers can offer extras such as firewalls, anti-virus and anti-spam, but it is up to you to gauge the level you require. Consider the costs of including security in your package, against whether you want to purchase your own, or if you want to chance it with free security.
10) Mobile – High speed mobile connections have been rolled out across the country and there is an increasing emphasis on using smartphones and tablets for business purposes. If your business uses these devices regularly, it may be worth looking at if your broadband provider can also offer high speed mobile connection.
What factors do you consider most when looking for a broadband provider? Are there any providers you would recommend to other business owners?