If you run a small business from home you might use standard consumer broadband and get along just fine. Broadband is simply a connection to the internet, but there are some advantages of switching to a dedicated business broadband package.
On the face of it, these plans aren’t too different from normal home broadband. The price tends to be slightly more than the equivalent consumer broadband, but in return you’ll receive better customer support, quicker repairs and guaranteed minimum uptime.
This means business broadband is more reliable, so you’re much less likely to end up in a situation where you can’t run your company because your internet is down.
If broadband is absolutely critical to your business, it’s worth looking at plans which come with 4G backup, or offer it as a bolt-on option. If your main broadband connection fails, the service will automatically switch to 4G – the same mobile data connection your phone uses – which ensures your devices are always connected.
Best Broadband Deals for Businesses
TalkTalk Simply SuperFast Fibre
Was: £28.95 (exc VAT) per month
£2100.95 (exc VAT) per month
TalkTalk’s best-value deal offers up to 76Mbps download speeds just like BT. There are no setup or postage costs (for the kit) and the deal price lasts the full two years, not just the first one. The price also includes line rental with pay-as-you-go calls.
This makes it one of the most affordable business broadband plans. And if you need unlimited UK landline and mobile calls, then the Complete Superfast Fibre plan costs £6 more per month.
Sky Connect Essential
Was: £29.95 per month (exc. VAT)
£14.95 per month (exc. VAT) for first 12 months
For Black Friday, Sky Connect is offering half-price broadband for the first 12 months of a 24- or 36-month contract.
The price above is for the Essential package which offers 76Mbps download speeds and a digital phone line with unlimited UK calls.
But there’s also a Pro plan which doubles speeds, adds 4G backup and the option to increase download speeds up to 500Mbps when you need it.
Vodafone Superfast 2
£12.92 (exc VAT) per month
Vodafone is offering a great deal on its Superfast 2 package.
It’s a 24-month contract but you pay nothing until month 13. We’ve averaged the monthly price to make it easier to compare to other deals here, but it’s obvious that this deal blows the others away.
It offers up to 76Mbps download speeds and up to 16Mbps upload.
Unlike Vodafone’s Pro packages, this one doesn’t come with 4G backup or the promise of Wi-Fi in every room. If you want that, it’s £29 per month – considerably more.
Plusnet Unlimited Business Fibre Broadband
£22 (exc VAT) per month
Plusnet’s Unlimited business fibre broadband offers speeds of up to 76Mbps, versus 17Mbps for the only-slightly-cheaper non-fibre package.
The cost includes landline rental and the only extra is £4.95 for postage of the Hub Two router. You get dedicated UK-based 24/7 tech support, but there’s no 4G backup with this deal.
From: Virgin Media
£33 (exc VAT) per month
Offering fast speeds, Virgin Media’s Voom 400 package is ideal if you’re looking for something that’s faster than the 76Mbps offered by most other providers (which have to use BT’s fibre network). You’ll get up to 400Mbps download speeds and up to 40Mbps upload
One restriction, which won’t affect many small businesses, is that there’s no option for a dedicated (static) IP address with this package.
Virgin promises a resolution to any problems within 24 working hours of first recording the issue.
For an extra £7 per month you can add ‘constant connect’ – a 4G backup in case the main broadband fails for any reason.
BT Fibre 76 Essential + Digital Line
Was: £34.95 (exc VAT) per month
£26.95 (exc VAT) per month
BT’s Essential business package goes up to 900Mbps, but only if your premises are already hooked up to a full fibre connection.
Pricing depends upon the speed you want to pay for. In addition to the Fibre 76 package, there are options for up to 150Mbps (£27.95), 300Mbps (£32.95), 500Mbps (£37.95) and 900Mbps (£42.95).
Whichever you choose, it’s a 24-month contract, with a minimum speed guarantee (this will vary depending upon your postcode). A digital phone line is included, and you can take and make phone calls on the go: you don’t have to be at home (or wherever your run your business) to use it.
Note that Essential doesn’t include 4G backup or expert tech support, but if you’re prepared to pay an extra £10 per month, Halo for business includes those features, plus a free static IP address.
Which broadband is best for 2022?
According to Ofcom, these are the best broadband providers of last year based on customer satisfaction and least complaints:
- Broadband provider of the year: EE
- Best provider for customer service: BT
- Best broadband provider for small businesses: Vodafone
- Fastest broadband provider: Virgin Media