It goes without saying that internet is necessary to small businesses, but finding the right fit can be overwhelming at times. Factors such as speed, network type and price only scratch the surface when making an educated decision about the internet connection that will support your fundamental operations.

A COO who delegates an internet decision to a dedicated IT department or someone streaming a show at home doesn’t have to think about the finer points of business internet. As a small business owner, you have to keep a much closer eye on the bottom line and make careful decisions to help your business grow.

Finding the best internet for your business doesn’t have to turn into a stressful, confusing ordeal. To ease the burden a bit, Verizon has compiled a five-part guide that explains in detail how small business internet works, and what you’ll need to take into account when considering service. It also includes tips on how to improve your internet’s performance and ensure a secure connection once you decide.

Part 1: Network type

A network is the foundation of your broadband service.Nowadays internet service providers are numerous, and you can choose from among several different kinds of networks that function in different ways. So what type of network is best for your business? Explore the basic forms that internet service takes, including cable, satellite, high-speed internet or DSL and fiber-optic, and learn what sets business broadband apart from residential services.

Learn more in Part 1: Network Type

Part 2: Speed and reliability

Not all broadband plans are created equal. Internet speed and reliability varies across networks and can affect the productivity of your business—typically, the faster the speed, the more you can get done in a workday. This section covers the latency of different types of internet, upload speeds and download speeds and how variables such as geography or the number of devices and users in an establishment can affect a connection’s speed and quality.

Learn more in Part 2: Speed & Reliability

Part 3: Wi-Fi

Your business internet should be prepared for any working situation, whether you’re at your desk or not. In this section, learn how Wi-Fi can boost your business’s productivity and make your space an inviting and efficient place to both work and do business. You will also find out how to secure your Wi-Fi and set up a separate account that customers and guests can access in order to regulate the traffic the network is hosting.

Learn more in Part 3: Wi-Fi

Part 4: Security

The internet can be a wonderful yet equally dangerous place. Small businesses cannot afford a data breach that could compromise their entire system. Here you will learn what you can do to protect your network and sensitive information from less-than-friendly eyes. Discover how tools such as firewalls and a virtual private network could mean the difference between constant worry and peace of mind for your business.

Learn more in Part 4: Security

Part 5: Price

Every penny counts to a small business owner, so cost tends to be a major factor in the search for internet. Internet service doesn’t have to break the bank, but pricing between different types of networks tends to vary. Here you will find a thorough comparison of the cost of satellite, cable, DSL and fiber-optic networks, and how location and the framework of each type of service factors into how much a user pays for it.

Learn more in Part 5: Price

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