Business Broadband Speeds Need to Increase or Face Negative Impact on SMEs

UK SMEs need superfast broadbandFast broadband is the key to any small or medium-sized business’ success and that is why this week’s announcement by the Government that every household is to have “super-fast” internet by 2015 is welcome news for leisure and businesses throughout the UK.

Because of the way modern technology has moved forward, small businesses and their customers rely on the internet quite heavily and it is now a fundamental resource for communication, sourcing information, conducting analysis and more. Without it, businesses can find themselves left in the dark with regards to up-to-the minute news and changes which are important to their products or services.

However, no matter what broadband package you have, there is always the potential for a slow connection or even loss of connection altogether. This can cause many problems for people, from an employee doing their everyday job to a customer trying to buy something online.

For employees, tasks that require the internet may not be completed, and online meetings may be missed. A lesson to learn is that the age-old idea of writing things down should never be completely forgotten. Of course, the internet, email and other technologies such as smartphones minimize the need for personal organisers but you really should’t be found wanting in this area.

Technology, no matter how advanced, is liable at some point to experience technical difficulties affecting its performance and, therefore, usefulness. Simply keeping an updated personal organiser that lists important facts, figures and meetings will go a long way in keeping you prepared for those moments where you can’t rely solely on technology.

This also applies to any important documents which may need to be accessed quickly – keeping hard copies quick to hand and neatly filed in lever arch files has the potential to save the day if your internet has slowed down or disappeared.

For a customer, if connection is slow they may not be able to complete the buying process or even worse, not be able to access a business’ web site at all. This could result in them taking their custom elsewhere, which can have a detrimental effect on a business’ sales margin. Small businesses need fast internet connections for both their employees (so work can be completed efficiently), and for their customers (so products and services can be sold and customer service maintained).

Small businesses constitute 99.3% of all businesses within the UK. They make a huge contribution to the country’s economy and, thanks to the internet, can operate all over the world. This is why the need for speedy broadband is essential to continue this statistic and increase it further. However, over 63% of that 99.3% are unhappy with the speed in which their broadband is delivered. So why are connections more than likely not going to be up to scratch?

Ofcom has recently published research that revealed many broadband providers advertising the speed of their services as being much quicker than it actually is. Although there has been an increase in speed for most providers, many companies advertise highly exaggerated figures that what users actually experience. The MB stated tends to be the MB that leaves the exchange, not the MB that you receive.

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