The gulf between residential and business broadband deals is not as great as it once was. The wide adoption of streaming video, family friendly conferencing services, gaming and home-working has driven the demand for more robust options at a residential level.
The price of what were previously considered business services are being driven down by the rapid consolidation of service providers. There are, however, some core features of business internet service that are likely to remain unique.
The two main requirements of business class broadband are reliability and support; for most businesses, internet access is just as important as electricity. The loss of the internet in a modern business could result in the loss of email, customer support services, purchasing, shipping, billing, and in some cases, the loss of revenue if the business hosts its own product website.
For that reason, businesses need to know that the internet service they subscribe to is going to be reliable. Their secondary concern is often speed, which is most likely to be determined by cost.
After that, business users often look for more technical details, such as IP address availability, email hosting, domain name hosting, web site hosting, file hosting or sharing and corporate conferencing services, which are just some of the features available from some service providers.
To conclude; there are a number of similarities between the requirements of businesses and residential users when it comes to finding the best internet provider. The key is identifying your particular requirements, before shopping for the vendor that will give you what you need for the best price.
Top tips for choosing business broadband
Speed – It’s a given that you will want to be able to complete downloads as quickly as possible. However, also consider upload speeds too. If you have a requirement to place information online, such as on to a company website, you’ll want to do this in the quickest time possible.
Contention ratios – Broadband speeds vary and are dependent on a number of factors including the volume of traffic being carried when you are logged on. The higher the contention ratio, the larger the number of people that are using the same service as you at any one time. Imagine travelling on a congested motorway and being given the option to travel on an uncongested toll road? Always look to lower contention ratios in order to enjoy faster speeds.
Security – Look out for enhanced levels of security such as anti-virus and spyware protection. Also look for additional elements such as firewalls and the ability to back-up your data online.
Support – Is there a dedicated helpline? What guarantees will your ISP give that your service will be prioritised? Are there SLAs i.e. Is there a guarantee to fix services within a set period of time?
Static IP address – Receiving a static IP address as part of your package will allow you to enjoy remote access, pick up emails direct to your PC and more.
Price – You should always pay close attention to the price and think about whether you are getting value for money. Consider the length of the contract and ensure you are getting the best deal over its tenure.
About the Author: This guest post was contributed by Daisy Group Plc, specialists in business broadband deals, business telephone systems, VoIP and Data.