Choosing a business Internet service provider (ISP) can be challenging for everyone, especially business owners. Although you must make cost comparisons, other factors beyond price determine the quality of service.
There are four main questions you should ask yourself when figuring out what type of internet you need and which provider is right for you.
1. How fast of a connection do you need?
Professional-grade Internet service typically reaches beyond 10 Mbps without issue. Most people have no idea what level of bandwidth they use and thus don’t know whether they need more or less. To find out what your connection speed is, use the free online test at Speedtest.net. Gauge the results to see if you can increase productivity using higher speeds. If your connection ratio (used to determine how many people work on the same signal) is higher than 30:1, then you most likely need more speed. Just make sure you figure out your needs before you buy. There’s no point in paying for more speed when less would’ve suited you just fine. You can always get more if your business expands and your needs change.
2. Can you bundle services?
Though your impulse might be to stick to Internet-only deals for ISP packages to save money, consider bundling phone and cable service with it. Even if you currently have cost-effective phone service, consolidating could provide superior service at the same price point or even less. Often times, providers will offer discounts for bundling more than one service (phone, internet, and/or TV), so you may save even more in the long run by bundling.
3. How much security does the internet service provider offer?
No matter how advanced Internet technology becomes, your business faces risks online. Consider top-shelf security essential when deciding on a provider. The best services deliver anti-spam, antivirus, anti-spyware, anti-malware, and even backup service protection in case of a system crash. If you are still creating hard copies of files, or saving them on external hard drives, consider moving to cloud storage for all workplace systems.
4. What level of customer support comes with the service?
Ask potential Internet service providers about customer support. Strong customer service is worth the added expense. In the event that internet goes down, or another problem arises, your business greatly benefits from guaranteed 24/7 attention from an ISP.
Choosing a provider for business Internet service is more difficult than ever. By looking beyond basic cost comparisons, you’ll find a great provider for your company.