Chances are you can’t “speak” face-to-face with your customers right now due to social distancing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t conduct business. The internet has allowed many companies to keep their lines of communication open throughout the entirety of the pandemic and these strategies will likely be sustained after this period is over. Ironically, the reliance on online communication has exposed the gaps in broadband businesses face. Today, we will help you learn a little bit more about how to determine if your business may need more bandwidth.
Does Your Business Have the Bandwidth it Needs?
If you are facing significant bottlenecks, the answer is evident. However, if yours is like most organizations, your team has either become used to these inefficiencies, or the way that you operate doesn’t result in you hitting the expected data wall. Regardless, the first question you need to ask is, do you know how much bandwidth your business needs?
There are many options for the Internet available: There is the Digital Subscriber Line (DSL), Cable Modem, Fiber, Wireless, Satellite, or Broadband over Powerlines (BPL), and more. That’s not the only consideration. Do you know if your ISP is sizing your capacity for your level of consumption? Are they giving you the best pricing they can?
If you’re not sure, then you should consider speaking to the IT professionals at Nexela. Our consultants can help you ascertain your broadband needs and communicate that to your existing ISP; or, find one that is a better fit.
Before you make the call, here are some things to give you a better idea about your broadband use:
Running a Speed Test
A speed test will give you an idea of how much bandwidth you have access to and whether you have enough to be productive. While your internet consultant will have access to a wide range of professional testing tools, it won’t hurt if you take a look using a speed-tester such as speedtest.net. This tool (and others) can give you a better idea of your performance, allowing you to have a more informed conversation about the situation you are in.
Some speed measurements to consider include:
- Ping: Ping (also called latency) is a way to measure the reaction time of your connection. For example, how fast it takes for a webpage to recognize that you opened another tab. Factors contributing to ping issues include your ISP (Internet service provider), improperly configured firewall, router, and modem, and your overall bandwidth. Note: the lower your ping is, the better your internet connection will perform, so look for a ping of around 20 ms.
- Upload and download speed: You have data uploads and downloads (pushing information from your computer and pulling data to your computer). This is another critical measurement to note when benchmarking your bandwidth. Most businesses will download more data than they upload. Hence the majority of your bandwidth will concentrate on downloads.
What About Wi-Fi?
Suppose you’re thinking about having your team return to the office. You need to consider if your Wi-Fi is up to the task as your team follows social distancing while in the office. You may find that you’re experiencing ‘dead’ zones where your wireless network is at its weakest.
Unoptimized wireless connections can cause considerable productivity problems. This is exacerbated if your bandwidth is underpowered. With a deficit in the amount of network speed and bandwidth, some employees will begin using solutions not sanctioned by your IT administrator. This shadow IT can have major negative effects on your network.
Are You Starving Your Business?
Without enough bandwidth, your business will have trouble providing the level of service customers, new and existing, expect. In today’s fast-paced business environment, any slowdown will affect your bottom line. This is particularly true when much of your business is being supported by your online efforts, and your customers are having a poor user experience.
Additionally, your team relies on your broadband capacity to be productive. For example, video conferencing such as Zoom meetings is bandwidth-intensive, and if you don’t have enough, your team may not be able to communicate effectively. Perhaps you’re considering investing in VoIP because it offers a wide range of features at a great price point. VoIP utilizes broadband, and if you don’t have enough capacity, once again, you’re going to have a poor experience.
Get the Most Out of the Web With Internet Consulting
The COVID-19 crisis has changed how we all do business, forcing many small to medium-sized companies to evolve their strategies for survival. In this regard, the internet has taken on increased importance in allowing your business to remain competitive. Your internet provider must understand your business is unique and requires more than an off-the-shelf, cookie-cutter solution.
The most important service an internet consultant can provide is translating your broadband needs to your ISP, so you receive the best solution for your business’ long-term growth. As a local business, Nexela is familiar with the broadband options available and can help you make the right decisions about your business’ computing, networking, and IT-based relationships. Give us a call today at (215) 525-3223.