In the twenty-first century, internet connection for a business isn’t just an optional add-on that could potentially boost sales. it’s a basic utility that companies can use for promotion as well as for dealing with customers.
Slow internet speed can do a lot to hamper the way a business operates, and even if the product or service the company offers is the best in the business, a poor connection could leave a sour taste in customers’ mouths. Determining a business’ internet speed may require running it through a speed test, but if the results are dismal, the company should consider improving its connection speed.
Don’t believe me? Here are some of the ways that slow internet connections could cripple your business.
1. Free WiFi to Consumers isn’t Fast Enough
Offering WiFi to customers is an important trend in business that can lead to a larger volume of customers. Small Biz Trends points out that as much as 62% of businesses noted that customers spent more time on-premises when free WiFi was offered. However, the speed of WiFi is also a concern. With so many businesses offering connections, a slow internet connection is like teasing a customer. It’s no surprise if they decide to leave because another competing business offers a more reliable and faster public WiFi access point.
2. Customer Service Applications Need Reliable Connectivity
Many customer service applications need an active internet connection. Many small businesses use connected customer service apps to increase the effectiveness of their customer-facing interactions. A few even use fully-connected front ends and database management to deal with every aspect of their business.
Connectivity is needed for these applications to keep their information updated. If a company’s internet connection is slow, that updating process will take forever, leading to disgruntled customers and lines at the cashier. Frustrated customers leave horrible reviews on local pages, and these could affect future business for the company.
3. Applications are Slower and Less Responsive
Most businesses realize the need for a cloud-based architecture when dealing with their data. However, as with all connected apps, a reliable internet connection affects the speed at which data moves to or from the cloud. More complicated systems such as SAP HANA or even Office 365 require connections to be stable and speedy enough to operate.
Telco Solutions mentions that slow internet connections could eat up combined hours of productivity from workers, a typical situation if the business needs to be connected to use their applications. As a business grows, connected applications become more of a necessity. Growing small businesses need a faster internet connection to support their increased dependence on these apps.
4. Poor File Sharing Efficiency
File sharing has become a major part of businesses, and having access to a cloud drive or a shared database is essential to most companies. Constant updates can severely impact upload and download speeds to a cloud drive. While a business can set its system to automatically update files on the cloud after a set amount of time, this opens the door to data loss if the system goes down before a scheduled backup.
Chron notes that many ISP’s don’t publicize their upload speeds since they are usually a fraction of the download speeds. However, for a company, having access to both at a certain rate is a necessity. A company can’t keep its cloud drive updated if its connection is too slow.
5. Shared Connections Bog Down All Users
Companies usually only pay for a single connection into the business. While some businesses do buy a second line for consumer WiFi, some just saddle the consumer WiFi on a separate subnet and burden the single incoming connection even more. The problem that arises is that the more users that are on the network, the more sluggish the system operates.
Nexogy states that businesses may have access to either a shared or a dedicated connection. Dedicated connections offer a particular speed to all users of the network and are better for businesses that need connectivity to their employees and clients. Shared connections split the total bandwidth up over the number of users and can lead to lags in speed if too many users are connected.
6. Payment Processing is Impacted
Credit Cards have become the go-to payment method for the vast majority of purchases in brick-and-mortar stores. According to a survey done by Experian, only 24% of the purchases are made with cash.
For a business to remain competitive, it needs to offer a wide variety of payment methods, and any card-based system needs a reliable, functional, and speedy internet connection to work. No consumer wants to wait around for ten minutes while the system struggles to verify their card payment. A faster connection means more efficient electronic transactions.
7. Slow Video Conferencing
Remote work is among the fastest-growing areas of business today. Forbes mentions that half of the workforce may soon be operating from their own homes. To keep abreast of work, companies have to invest in video conferencing for use as a virtual meeting space.
A proper video conference requires a fast and reliable internet connection or else the speed bottleneck may impact both video and audio quality. A meeting where no one can hear or see anything is a waste of everyone’s time. It is likely to have a detrimental effect on the company’s productivity, employee morale, and the ability to manage remote workers.
Internet Connection Speeds are Crucial to Success!
Both a company’s reputation and its productivity are affected by poor internet connectivity. With faster internet in the form of 5G soon to be available, businesses can seize the initiative and upgrade their systems as the new technology emerges. Businesses need to be aware of the benefits these technological improvements could have on their business.
Slow internet connections make a business seem less professional and can impact a company’s bottom line severely. An internet connection is an investment into a company’s ability to perform efficiently and effectively, and businesses should see it as such.
Emily Jacobs is Happiness Ambassador for SpeedCheck.org and loves to write about the latest technology trends.