How to determine bandwidth needs for your small business

Here's everything you need to know about bandwidth needs for your small business.

As a business owner, ensuring you have fast and reliable internet to operate your business effectively should be top of mind. From accessing cloud-based storage to sending daily reports, an internet connection is at the core of all you do.

While speed and reliability are both important there is another, often ignored, equally important aspect to consider, and that’s the bandwidth of your network. Bandwidth is what allows data to be transferred over a wired or wireless connection. Too little bandwidth can lead to a slow connection and paying for too much can be a waste; that’s why it’s important to find a happy medium to fit the needs of your business.

Let’s take a deeper dive into bandwidth, why it matters, and how to determine the bandwidth your business needs.

How does bandwidth work and why is it important?

Although bandwidth affects internet speed, there are differences in how they are measured. 

Bandwidth is measured as the amount of data that can be transferred from one point to another within a network in a specific amount of time. The measurement of bandwidth is typically expressed in “Megabits per second” or Mbps. Internet speed, on the other hand, shows how quickly data is pulled from the internet to a device (download speed) and pushed from that same device to the Internet (upload speed).

Choosing lower bandwidth means less data can be sent over the network at one time. That’s why it’s important to choose a Centurylink internet for business package that not only provides adequate internet speeds, but also the bandwidth your business needs to operate efficiently.

How do I determine how much bandwidth my business needs?

Determining the bandwidth your business needs largely depends on three factors: the number of devices on your network, amount of users at any given time, and online activity. 

Let’s explore each of these factors in detail to better understand how they each contribute to your bandwidth requirements.

Number of devices

The number of devices on your network can affect your bandwidth. The more devices you have, the more bandwidth you will need. When estimating the amount of devices that will need to connect to your internet network, be sure to include personal devices such as mobile phones, tablets, and smart watches as well. 

Amount of users

As a general rule of thumb, you’ll need about 10 to 15 Mb per employee. While three-quarters of small businesses have fewer than 10 employees, that may not be the case for your business. When counting the number of employees that’ll need internet access be sure to also include clients and customers who may need regular access. 

Online activity

No two small businesses are the same, and neither is their daily internet activity. Using the internet to check emails and read articles won’t use a ton of bandwidth, but activities like video conferencing, streaming, and file sharing will. That’s why it’s important to set realistic expectations for what your network can host. 

 

Small Business Internet With CenturyLink 

CenturyLink offers internet service for small businesses of all shapes and sizes. Our business support center representatives will help you customize your plan so that you get the internet speed and bandwidth you need. Whether you’re a start-up or we

ll established local shop, we have a small business internet option for you!

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