If the past few months have shown us anything, it’s that embracing the latest technology and online capabilities is absolutely vital to ensuring business success. One of the biggest drivers of this is fibre optics, which is fast moving from a ‘nice-to-have’ connection to a ‘must-have’ connection as most business moves online. But before you make the big move to business fibre, there are certain factors to consider ahead of time. Here they are:
9 things to consider when choosing business fibre
1. Area of availability
While business fibre is quite readily available in metropolitan areas, large parts of South Africa are still without fibre, particularly the more rural locations. You need to investigate the availability of fibre cables in your particular area and track down an internet service provider (ISP) who is able to get you connected.
2. Internet speed
One of the biggest considerations in terms of business fibre is the speed of the internet provided. Insufficient speed will render all your online business transactions useless, so this really needs to be one of the deciding factors when considering business fibre. When it comes to speed, you need to question the bandwidth which is the volume of information per unit of time the transmission can sustain.
3. The cost involved
No business decision will ever be made without weighing up the cost factor, and while business fibre is a modern necessity, it doesn’t mean you have to be overpaying for the service. Discuss the bandwidth availability, the internet type and the costs involved before settling on an ISP.
4. Flexibility of the connection
You must always plan for potential business growth which is why flexibility in your business fibre connection is also key. As your business develops, so will your internet needs and you might require an upgrade of bandwidth. Check that your chosen ISP has the flexibility to upgrade your system without exorbitant costs.
5. Internet reliability
Alongside the internet speed, reliability is one of the top deciding factors when it comes to choosing your business fibre provider. There are very few businesses that can risk the cost and reputation damage associated with unreliable connectivity – particularly when there’s still load shedding to contend with – so it’s important that you check the reliability of your ISP’s business fibre.
6. Data package
Your data requirements will also form part of the business fibre considerations and this will determine whether you opt for a capped or uncapped fibre package. A capped contract essentially means that you’re limited to the amount of data you can use every month. Once you reach the cap, you can pay for top up but it’s often at a higher rate. For most businesses, particularly those doing a lot of uploading and downloading, an uncapped contract is best.
7. Industry experience
If your fibre service provider is offering incredible rates and unmatched deals, you might want to check their industry experience to ensure they can actually deliver on all the promises. Being new to the market doesn’t mean you should avoid them, it’s just best to have some concrete background information that they can deliver for your own assurance.
8. Any extras
Any company that is willing to go beyond the mere basics of providing business fibre is one worth considering. If the company is flexible, and is willing to customise a business fibre solution that works for your particular business, then you’re going to benefit in the long run.
9. The support provided
While this comes at the end of the list, it’s possibly the most important factor when choosing your business fibre provider. The support offered can be the difference between your business’ success and failure so do your research to find out from other customers exactly what ISP support there is. Whether it’s attending to a faulty hardware, a damaged line or simply assisting with a query, the support is crucial to uninterrupted operations.
Once you’ve found an ISP that ticks all the above-mentioned boxes, you’re able to benefit from the superior connectivity of business fibre. Don’t hesitate to take your business forward with something as fundamental as a quality internet connection.