These days, companies in Portage depend on reliable Internet access as the lifeblood of their business. Fortune 500 companies to small companies and everything in between, rely on reliable and fast access to The web.
We will become increasingly dependent on Internet access as the months and years progress.
From email messaging to information sharing, e-commerce to archiving data, and voice over IP to video chat, the web is omnipresent. How can your needs be met? A cable modem may be satisfactory. Metro Ethernet may be the thing you need. Gigabit Internet may be required. What is best for your business in Portage? Will your company needs be met with a 50 Meg circuit, a 5 Meg circuit, 10 Meg access to The Internet or 100 Meg access to The net point?
Prior to selecting a service, your business must figure out its needs. Why will you need the internet? Will you only be web surfing and emailing? Is it used to network with cloud servers? Are you hosting the data in Portage, Michigan and distant sites or offices rely on you?
Have you thought about what will happen to your company if your high-speed Internet is interrupted by an outage? Will your business suffer from the lull? Does your company require uptime? You must answer questions like these so you can make a purchase that actually meets your needs
In all-encompassing terms, businesses need high-speed Internet access. Before you choose your broadband internet, look at the costs and benefits. Performing this analysis is an important step in picking the right one for your business. While various providers will throw around terminology like:
… be sure not to forget what capability and technical solutions meet your business’s specific needs.
For many, if not all, companies in Portage, Internet access is needed for at least some employees. Third party applications, organization research or development and e-commerce are just some of the ways the internet may be needed.
The solution you choose may be based on the number of employees you have or expect to have. A five or ten megabyte Internet circuit may be all you need if employ a small workforce. If you have many employees who need to use the net at the same time, you may do better with more.
You may not need as much high-speed access to The Internet if your employees work primarily on an intranet system with limited graphics and video. On the other hand, Internet speed becomes dramatically more important when they are required to regularly download things like documents or videos.
Are you regularly performing backups? If you are doing remote backups from every desk, which is advisable, you will need to be able to support simultaneous connections out to the web to synchronize your backup data.
Google drive and DropBox are two popular sharing services. Are you using one of these or some other service that allows you to share files? After a file is saved, it goes to the cloud and then to someone else’s computer. Supporting file sharing, while supporting every other service, requires sufficient bandwidth.
Are you interested in high-speed business Internet? Depending on where you are located, you may want to look into the viability of gigabit Internet and Metro Ethernet. “Lit buildings” that have already been wired by a carrier, are commonly the site for these. Adding this high-speed Internet to your office may be surprisingly affordable and easy.
While bringing Metro Ethernet to a new building can be an expensive proposition, bringing that connection to a suite within the building is not. In fact, obtaining high-speed access to The Internet with Metro Ethernet or gigabit Internet can often take 30 days or less depending upon availability.
Consider whether your business hosts its own servers that run APIs, websites and/or data to outside buildings, offices or companies. Are your corporate headquarters with a hosted application utilized by 50 branch offices? Does your office host the point of sale (POS) system for every single store in a large retail chain? Are you a law firm? Do you host data for three or more external places?
Granting access to outsiders is necessary when you host data and programs at a central location. Those people are not able to work without a solid Internet connection. Are you picking an intranet solution that provides reliability and stability for your multiple, simultaneous connections from various sites?
The needs of an office with one employee web surfing may not need more than a cable modem or an inexpensive 5-10 megabyte circuit. For the headquarters, high-speed access to The net including Metro Ethernet, gigabit Ethernet or other high-speed dedicated circuits is advisable. Multiple diverse connections require support, in addition to high speed. A cable modem would likely be insufficient.
There is a price that comes along with choosing a cable modem or other lower cost circuit. While the monthly rate is lower, the bandwidth is generally shared among other tenants. While you may subscribe to a cable modem with a 30 Meg connection, you may be unable to reach those speeds during peak hours. Cable operators are only permitted to establish a certain amount of bandwidth within communities. That bandwidth reaches out like branches to every building in the community and the people living and working in those buildings. During crucial working hours, you may not get to the 30-meg speed you have been capped at. Is this a problem for you if you expect 30 and get 6?
You can find a carrier who can provide dedicated and guaranteed bandwidth. With these, bandwidth belongs to you and your organization only; no sharing. The full capacity of your circuit should be attainable during all hours regardless of neighboring buildings, people or offices.
For example, with Metro Ethernet, you can receive a guaranteed bandwidth in increments of five Meg circuits, 10 Meg circuits, 50 Meg circuits and 100 Meg circuits. Want to reach gigabit speeds? You can by using a gigabit Internet provider.
The providers in this situation deliver high-speed to a particular building in sufficient quantity to split their circuit among various tenants. Of course, they must ensure that they each get the specific amount of their contracted speed.
The truth is that circuits can go down in Portage even though some carriers offer superior Internet bandwidth products. The question then becomes, “how do I minimize my chance of an outage? ”
There are, in reality, two kinds of redundancy.
With the first type of redundancy, you receive multiple circuits from the same carrier. In this situation, the redundancy helps protect you from port issues or physical line issues. If that carrier has a wide reaching outage or there is a line broken or damaged outside of your building, both circuits may go down. This offers some protection and assurance but does not eliminate all threats.
Bringing in circuits using two distinct providers is the second form of circuit redundancy. You may want your circuits to appear and act as if they are one and come from the same source. If so you can use IP address allocations and advanced routers to do so. You know the truth: that they are individual circuits and are there to back each other up in case one goes down. Diversity redundancy, as this is called, offers you more protection that you might realize. In the event a carrier goes down, you will not have to worry. You will have a perfectly live carrier there to keep things moving.
If you want to maximize redundancy in Portage, Michigan please consider the following question: Do the providers I am considering use the same physical geographic pathways? Alternatively stated, try to have your circuits enter the building on different sides from one another. The circuits would be attached to telephone poles (or underground conduits) in different directions leading to different data centers or central offices. In this way you have redundancy in different physical directions. If there is an event that causes a regional circuit problem, you have an alternative that is unaffected.
It is true that Internet access costs you money. However, the cost does not come close to what you will pay if the access that is not reliable. Consider the following:
You are on a cable modem with the carrier providing circuits to 14 other tenants in your building. During company hours, any of those tenants could be streaming video, performing massive file downloads, processing large volumes of phone calls and more. As available bandwidth shrinks, what will happen to your calls? What about phone call quality? Are calls dropped? Inaudible (choppy) to your customers?
Your office is the hub of your enterprise: You might be a law practice that shares files, a retail operation that utilizes POS systems or a large accounting firm that needs to share databases. Your primary Internet connection is responsible for granting access to data to all of your locations. This is true whether you have 3 locations or 2000 locations. What happens in the event of a circuit failure? Is it simply an irritation or a catastrophe? Can your satellite or remote office do any work at all? Take new orders? Service existing ones? Dispense and receive data? Make sure you completely understand your needs before you pick a solution. Maybe your software company runs a hosted solution. Maybe that hosted solution is used by hundreds of your customers. Perhaps you operate a service where other systems talk to yours via an API to calculate freight rates, commodity prices, collect current weather data or receive any other information that you serve up. What if these other systems have difficulty connecting your servers? Customers will only take so many repeated outages. How long with they remain with your company?
Your business is 100% reliant on the web to properly function. Should your circuits stop working, imagine your people being unable to make any outbound phone calls. Your reps have no way of answering calls, if they even know they are coming in. You are now, essentially, out of company. While most call centers that are reputable use redundancy, is it enough? Are the providers that you are using reliable enough? Clear and reliable calls are essential. Does your carrier service consistently provide this?
It should be clear by now that you have many different options to select from. Your organization needs and your budget will have to come into consideration when deciding on your solutions. As a wrap-up:
A single fifty, ten or five megabyte access to The Internet circuit may be adequate to meet the needs of your small organization, particularly if you have only one location and are not worried about redundancy. For an office in a lit building, you may find that gigabit service or Metro Ethernet are affordable options for you. Costs vary with location and the availability of circuits so speak with our engineers. Together, we can find the best option for you and your business.
You will need higher speed Internet access if you have a medium sized business in Portage. Metro Ethernet, gigabit Internet and other higher-speed Internet circuits are your options. Optimally, multiple carriers and multiple circuits will give you the most redundancy. You can sometimes achieve this without doubling costs. Two smaller circuits may be cheaper than one. For instance, you may use two 50 meg circuits instead of a single 100 meg circuit. Availability and costs vary. Your specific location will determine what options you have. Please speak with one of our experts to find out what those are and how we can meet your needs.
If your company has several sites or offices, you are at great risk for failure. Redundant circuits must be an essential part of their systems. Different providers are desirable. You can increase redundancy with switches or routers. Having redundant equipment can also minimize risk. Have you looked at Metro Ethernet providers, gigabit Internet providers and other high-speed Internet access circuit providers? You should do so before making a decision. The best mix of providers and services can maximize the productivity and efficiency of your company.
For businesses that fit this description, it is essential to have gigabit Internet circuits, point-to-point high-speed Internet circuits and Metro Ethernet Internet circuits. If you want to ensure your valuable uptime, have redundant circuits from multiple providers as well as redundant hardware. You need enough bandwidth. The bandwidth must be sufficient to handle spikes in usage with no slowdowns or interruptions. Be sure to have the right circuits and hardware. They both must be able to support multiple, fast, concurrent connections.
Insufficient bandwidth and failing circuits are present tremendous risk to your business. You must select the single circuit or multiple circuits that can meet your demands and stay within your budget. Choosing the right mix of circuits and hardware is a daunting task.
Our engineers can analyze your needs and create a free action plan for you. We’ll formulate a design or plan based partly on your current usage and demand levels. We are going to create something cost effective that gives you the resources your company needs, while keeping it running smoothly.
If you would like to arrange for an assessment, please click here to complete the contact information form to the right. You can call our office as well. Assessments are completed in as little as 48 hours.