The world is growing, and most businesses are moving to digital marketing. Companies have started to understand the benefits of their online presence. It’s now hard to imagine a Business world without the internet.
The internet allows people to connect personally, search online for different services, buy services online, stream and gaming, among many other things. Internet is equally essential for all businesses across the globe. Employees, customers, and stakeholders depend on the internet to access products online, communicate and perform simple tasks online. For example, banks have moved to mobile banking and online banking, which can only be managed if there’s a reliable internet connection. Your business would just be a shell of productivity without a reliable internet connection.
To sum that up, every business, small or multinational, relies on the internet for its productivity. But different companies have different needs. It’s now clear that one internet service will not work for all types of business. Searching for an internet provider that clearly matches your business needs is very important. Check out this guide to the best Internet services for small and big companies. I’ve equally shared a Guide on how to shop for a Business Internet provider (ISP).
Types of Internet connections available for Businesses
There are a couple of internet connections that are available depending on where you live. If the business is established in major cities, you may have a full menu of internet connection. Limited ISPs are providing one or more of the internet connections discussed here for companies in rural areas.
Fiber internet is a preference for most businesses because of its high speed and stability. In this case, the internet is transmitted through Fiber-Optic. The internet travels as pulses of light through the plastic strands and microscopic glass. This Connection type is the oldest but still the fastest. The only downside is its price and limited availability.
Digital Subscriber Line or better known as DSL, is a significant improvement to Dial-ups. This connection has received middle-ground internet connection status offering medium internet speeds for businesses and residential users. This connection type equally allows traditional telephone lines. DSL is perfect for shops and businesses with few employees. The main advantage is that DSL is cheap but remember, the overall distance affects the download speeds.
Cable Internet connection
In this connection type, data is transmitted through coaxial cable TV lines. The key advantage of this connection type is that coaxial cables are almost everywhere in the US. Today, Cable connections don’t hold up well. However, the speeds are impressive, but it will be great if your business is close to the Provider.
Satellite internet is one of the superb alternatives to DSL, cable, and Fiber internet, especially for rural areas. Satellite internet cannot match the speeds of DSL, Fiber, and Cable TV. It can be expensive if you live in places where there are no alternatives.
There are few dial-up providers, but millions of Americans are still benefiting from this type of connection. Dial-up is a cheap alternative to satellite internet, but you should be ready to cope up with slow internet. It can only work for businesses with extraordinarily light internet needs.
Tips for choosing a Business Internet service
What are your Business Internet needs?
The first thing to care about is the specific Internet needs for your business. It’s very easy to think that any internet connection type will work for your business. But depending on your workload, what you usually do with the internet, the number of employees, and upload needs should inform your decisions. If your company has less than 50 employees doing some simple tasks such as emails and uploading documents, it can benefit from 500Mbps bandwidth. Before rushing to subscribe to any business Internet service, it’s good to determine your business internet service requirements. This way, you will actually not end up paying for more than you need or getting stuck with slow internet.
Customer service and technician availability
It’s equally essential always to research specific customer satisfaction scores for different Business Internet services. If you do business round the clock, it’s good to check whether the Internet provider’s Technician and customer service are available 24/7. Time is money, and any minute wasted waiting for technical assistance will negatively affect earnings.
Some internet service providers impose lower than usual data limits and eventually charge a higher amount of money for recharges. Some other ISPs may throttle your internet after surpassing the limit. Besides the fact that data caps are standard with residential connections, you should be careful when subscribing to any Business Internet service.
This may not sound like a serious consideration, but it’s important to sign shorter internet contracts with your providers. Most Business Internet providers will tie their customers in a two-year contract or a one-year contract depending on the Provider. In case of any issues with the Provider that can make you decide to switch Internet providers, you will be needed to pay an Early Termination fee. So, always go with shorter Internet contracts.
Average yearly downtime
All Business Internet providers will promise a seamless experience with their internet. However, this is not always the case. As a matter of fact, you may end up getting lower than advertised Internet speeds and coping up with hours of downtime. Before subscribing, research and ask around about the ISP’s yearly downtime.
There should be a precise balance between cost and internet speeds. Cost matters, but it will depend on your business requirements. Large corporations will not bother too much about the cost, but you should make sure you’re not overpaying for the services if you are a startup.
What are the best Business Internet providers in 2020?
The decisions you make regarding your high-speed business internet provider may have a serious impact on your business productivity. The stability of the connections in one way or the other also determines customer satisfaction. I’m sure you have ever experienced a scenario where customers have had to wait for hours because of the slow internet or internet outages. So, always make the right decision in this regard. Here are some notable top picks for the best Business Internet providers for 2020.
AT&T will always top the list for the best Business Internet providers for its reliability, high speed, and affordable Business Internet. The company offers Cable, Fiber, and DSL internet connection types. AT&T fiber internet provides top speeds of up to 1Gbps and unlimited Cloud storage for your business. DSL internet packages are available for small and upcoming companies. The speeds for DSL can exceed 50Mbps on average. The AT&T Business internet service comes with free self-Installation. If your business goes beyond average internet uses such as emails and uploading light documents, then AT&T is a perfect match for you.
Furthermore, AT&T offers wireless internet for companies and Businesses established in remote and rural areas. This is a perfect connection type for Freelancers and other people whose business involves a lot of traveling. Wireless Internet will give your field employees a chance to work outside the office. Unluckily, AT&T imposes a data cap on fixed wireless plans. But you can purchase additional data at a lower cost of $10 per 50GB.
pros and cons
- Unlimited DSL and Fiber Internet for your Business
- Fixed Wireless Internet for remote employees, field employees, and Businesses in spotty areas.
- Affordable Business Internet.
- High speed Fiber internet of up to 10Gbps.
- Unlimited Cloud storage for Businesses
- The service is ideal for big companies
- Contract-Free Fiber connections
- Plenty of plans for your specific business needs
- Free Internet security software.
- The Fiber internet plans are relatively expensive
- Limited Fiber availability.
CenturyLink offers high-speed Business internet in more than 36 states in the US. The ISP offers Business Internet in two major connection types: The DSL Business Internet plans and Fiber Internet plans. You may not be able to get fiber internet in all 36 states. Another thing to note is that even in states where CenturyLink Fiber internet is available, it’s not found everywhere. Luckily, you can still enjoy high-speed Internet through DSL internet plans. Small Business Internet plans are very affordable. The price for DSL Business Internet starts as low as $49 every month. This is exactly what makes CenturyLink DSL internet a good fit for small businesses.
Though some may not like the imposed data cap of 1TB. Data caps are not a thing for businesses, especially if you are a developer, designer, or spend a lot of data uploading large files. The data cap of 1TB is an issue for companies processing a lot of information simultaneously.
The CenturyLink Business Internet speeds range from 140Mbps to 940Mbps for download speeds. The speeds are perfect for multiple internet use. You can actually process a lot of data and participate in conference calls without any worries. The lower speed DSL internet plans are perfect for small businesses. The price is affordable, and the internet speeds are enough for average internet uses such as emailing, downloading, and uploading documents.
If you are going for CenturyLink DSL service, you will be required to buy a modem. Luckily, no other equipment is needed, mainly because the service travels through telephone wires. If you are going for the CenturyLink Fiber network, you might be forced to pay for professional installation.
pros and cons
- It offers bundled Services
- No contract is needed
- Secure bandwidth for alarm systems, POS and VoiP
- It supports Cloud-Based computing
- High speed Internet
- Offers both DSL and Fiber internet.
- Wi-Fi Hotspot not supported
- Data Caps of 1TB
Verizon has an overall rating of 4.1 out of 5, offering Fiber Internet to businesses across States in the country. Companies can bundle Business Fiber Internet, TV, and Phone. The download speeds start from 100Mbps to 940Mbps, and the prices start from $39.99. Verizon excels in many categories, including reliability and performance. These are the two main features of a good Internet service provider. Unlike CenturyLink, no data caps are limiting your monthly data use. The only challenge is availability. Currently, Verizon offers Internet services to select areas in the Northeast.
Verizon equally offers DSL and Wireless Connection types. For the DSL connection type, the speeds start from 3Mbps. This internet speed is slower than normal and may not work perfectly fine for small Businesses. However, if it’s a home business or your business involves checking emails and performing occasional researches, the speed would be more than enough. Comparing DSL to Verizon Fiber internet, DSL is more expensive and may not be strong enough for Companies handling heavy data and tasks such as Videoconferencing, heavy uploads, and streaming. Unluckily, Verizon DSL may be the only available Internet type in some areas. Verizon Internet users can combine the Internet with TV and Phone services to save significantly on their monthly utility bills.
pros and cons
- Verizon Fiber internet is affordable
- There are no data limits
- VoIP Bundles services available
- Wide availability for DSL services
- No hotspots allowed
- It’s only available in 9 states.
Viasat is comparable to HughesNet, but the service is slightly more expensive than high-speed Fiber and DSL internet types. The only advantage is that Viasat is available in rural and marginalized areas where Fiber and DSL internet services are not available. Viasat Business Internet plans start from $50 every month for download speeds of up to 35Mbps. Though, the Viasat upload speeds can be a bit of a letdown. The company offers a 4Mbps upload speed, which is not ideal for serious gamers and uploaders. You may have to pay close to $150 every month for ViaSat’s fastest Internet plan of 100Mbps. But the Upload speed for the slowest and fastest internet plans still holds at 4Mbps.
All Viasat plans are similar in what they offer. The only difference is the internet speed and the price. The upload speed is the same in all the plans. You’ll equally be supposed to sign a two-year contract for Viasat plans. Depending on how much internet your business needs, you can get an average internet plan from Viasat. The lowest internet plan here is the 1GB of data. This plan is for Businesses that only have to check emails and a few software updates every month. The most expensive plan is 10GB, which I still think is not enough for basic Business Internet needs.
The reason why I included this company on the list is the fact that Viasat is a Satellite Internet provider. For businesses in rural areas or other areas where DSL and Fiber connection types are not available, Viasat may have a good deal for you. But be ready to cope with slow internet and dig deeper into your company’s financial reserves.
pros and cons
- Wide availability-Available in 50 States
- Hotspot availability
- Bundled Services available
- Very expensive
- Limited data access
- Slow internet speeds.
Google Fiber Business Internet is suitable for people looking for contract-free alternatives. The internet provider gives a Free Wi-Fi router to its customers. However, comparing Google fiber to other Business Internet providers, their services are relatively expensive. The lowest Internet plan is 250Mbps at the cost of $100, and the highest on the list is a 1Gbps Internet plan at $250 per month. Luckily, Google Fiber is a Fiber only internet connection that is reliable and highly preferred by large businesses. You will need to pay a qualified professional to install this service. Users can bundle services to lower their monthly payments.
Google Fiber is relatively new in the market, which means that it’s only available in major towns and cities. But with no contract services, no hidden costs, high-speed internet, and affordable data plans, more Businesses are considering it one of the best Business Internet providers. Look out for Google Fiber special promotions.
Google Fiber Internet pros and cons
- Cloud Storage Bundles
- No data caps
- Affordable Internet plans
- Speeds of up to 1Gbps
- No contracts.
- Limited availability
- You will have to buy a compatible fiber modem.
How to choose a reliable Business Internet provider?
A Business High-speed Internet provider is the one that provides high-speed internet to companies to keep everyone connected. The employees should always be connected with customers, clients, business associates, and the Board of Directors. The internet allows employees to collaborate and work seamlessly without spending a lot of time moving to report or share data. High-speed Business Internet should handle tremendous amounts of data and guarantee availability, reliability, and uptimes.
It should offer guaranteed uptime at all times. Service Uptime is the time in the year when the Provider is sure can provide reliable internet to the Businesses. Some Businesses usually communicate service downtimes either for maintenance or scheduled repairs. A High-speed Business provider should always guarantee uptime and less potential for outages, lost data, slower services, and service disruptions. Service downtime usually halts the business’s ability to access data, serve their customers, make business calls, and handle customer service reliably.
Another important consideration is the latency. This is the delay between a user’s action and the internet provider’s response. High-speed Business Internet providers should be able to offer low latency.
How to get efficient internet for 1 or more employees
There are a couple of features that you should watch out for from your Provider. If you operate a small business, you can opt for residential Internet services but if that is not the case, choose internet speeds of no less than 25Mbps. This will be enough internet for researching, browsing, sending emails, and sharing files.
Companies with more than five employees should go for internet service of more than 50Mbps. The speed should support simultaneous browsing, uploading and downloading, and sharing large files and point-of-sale software. If you have remote workers, it’s equally important to go for a wireless website service that can support data backup, web hosting, and eCommerce. The speeds should exceed 75Mbps. The upload speeds should also be more than 25Mbps.
Network coverage area is equally important. It’s important to go for less expensive local providers. Large Businesses can opt for Large ISPs for their Internet services. The Internet Bundles should as well concern you. It’s always a nice thing to go with Bundled services.
How much should I pay for High-Speed Internet Providers?
Employees will spend most of their day sending emails, replying to queries, researching information, updating company social media, and videoconferencing. Depending on the services you offer and your business’s specific Internet needs, you can pay as little as $30 to as much as $250, depending on the features and the Provider.
Which providers are the best for online gaming?
In online gaming, you must subscribe to internet service with high-speed internet and stability. AT&T, CenturyLink, Google Fiber, and RCN are some excellent internet providers for online gaming. Depending on how much you’re willing and able to pay for the services, you can pick any of their top tier internet plans.
What are the fastest Internet Plans of 2020?
Businesses should have high-speed Internet services. For that reason, I would recommend Fiber Business plans from Google Fiber, CenturyLink, AT&T, and many others.
I have discussed a number of the best High-Speed Internet providers available in the market today. Depending on where you particularly live, you can get some incredible speeds at low Internet costs per month for your business. Take your time to research a Business Internet service provider that will meet your Business’s Internet needs. The list is not limited, and new internet providers are coming up every year. It’s equally important to check online for updates and promotions frequently.