What to look out for when choosing business broadband
By AdFeatures | Wednesday, February 20, 2013, 10:35
With so many players on the field when it comes to telecoms and broadband, it can be difficult to know where to start looking. Most will claim to offer the best business broadband at the most competitive rates, and if you’re not totally up to speed with what all the different technical terms mean, it’s hard to know if you really are getting the best deal for your business.
In terms of broadband delivery and connection, nowadays fibre optic cable is arguably the best choice as it is much faster and more reliable than broadband delivered over traditional copper phone lines – some of which have been around for decades. Contention rates also tend to be a bit lower which means you’re not sharing your connection with as many people. This will be a real benefit at busy times of the day such as first thing in the morning when everyone is checking emails or again just after lunch. If the demands of your business mean that you can’t afford to share your broadband with anyone else at all then it is possible to get dedicated leased lines which will serve only your company. You will pay more for the privilege but it could be a worthwhile investment.
When you’re discussing broadband speed with your supplier don’t forget to consider upload speeds as well as download speeds as they may not always be advertised. This will be particularly important if you work in the creative industry, for example, where you have to upload large image, music or video files on a daily basis. The quicker you can get them loaded onto your FTP site and over to your clients for approval the better it will be for the work flow.
And finally, it’s really important to consider your service level agreement. It’s all well and good having super fast broadband with optimum upload and download speeds, but if there is a problem and there’s nobody around to answer the phone and help you out, tempers will start to fray. Losing your broadband for a day or even just a few hours is a huge waste of precious time and money, so you need to know that there’ll be an engineer on the case as soon as you report the problem. And if your office hours aren’t the regular 9-5 then 24 hour support will also be really important.
Have a list prepared of all the things you need to take into account, chat things through with your supplier and you’ll soon find the best broadband package for you and your business.