Last Updated on November 25, 2020

Choosing an Internet Service Provider (ISP) can get a bit confusing, especially with

using mobile phone

all the different service providers out there and the different types of services each offers. Here are some quick tips to help you determine the best Internet Provider and the best service type for your business.

First of all, you have to find out what services are available for your area. After determining your options, you can find out which service would work out the best for your business needs based on the following specifications.

1. Connection type

There are several different Internet connection types that we will talk about in detail in a future post. However, these are the most common types that you can choose from.

DSL is your least expensive option. This technology also uses already existing traditional telephone lines for transmitting digital data. DSL performance depends on how far your location is from the ISP exchange. This connection speed may reach up to approximately 15 mbps, which is enough to support a dozen typical users simultaneously, or a point-of-sale system.

This technology can be more expensive than DSL. The cable connection uses standard coax cable concurrently with TV and digital phones. Cable speeds may vary from 1.5Mbps to 100Mbps on DOCSIS 3.0 depending on what the ISP offers. However, added users or just heavy usage by other users in the area can possibly reduce your overall available Internet speed. Still, the cable Internet provider can typically add further resources to counteract heavy usage or large number of users.

Fiber Optic
Fiber Optic permits transmission over longer distances and at higher bandwidths than both DSL and Cable connection types, with a speed of up to approximately 200Mbps. With such a high speed, fiber can provide TV, phone, and Internet service for 24 simultaneous users.

2. Speed

ISPs offer different speed options for each one of the Internet connection types mentioned above. You can determine your speed needs based on the number of users and their usage needs. For example, streaming video, downloading files, and using VoIP phones requires additional bandwidth.

3. Needed equipment

Consider the hardware each ISP provides. Some services provide nothing more than a basic modem, while others may provide you with a gateway that includes a router with Ethernet ports, firewall protection, or even a built-in Wi-Fi router.

4. Email Accounts and Storage space

You can compare email or webmail offerings of each ISP based on the number of email accounts and the mailbox storage limit provided with the service. Most ISPs offer a number of email accounts, and some of them offer email accounts that list their domain name, while others let you use your company’s domain name.

5. Internet Security & other services

You can compare ISPs based on the additional services they offer, such as spam and virus protection software or online data backup. Other services may include website hosting. If you already have a website for your business or if you are planning to create one, you can take advantage of the web-hosting features offered by some ISPs. Some providers offer free website space and tools; others offer it as an add-on.

6. Help and support

Finally, it is very important to compare the tech support offerings from different ISPs. You need to check the Service Level Agreement (SLA), types of support available, and the hours of support.

What ISP and what service are you using or planning to use? Add your comment below.


GCN provides businesses with voice, data, cloud, colocation and networking services solutions from over 150 partner providers worldwide. We don’t act as the typical telecommunications agency or reseller; instead, we are our customers’ technology advisor. We determine and tailor the best solutions to meet our customers’ needs world-wide. We save our clients the time and trouble of managing one or more service providers and leverage the best solutions for them at the most cost-effective price.

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3 Response Comments

  • Daniela Adams  October 22, 2015 at 10:54 pm

    This article is so helpful, I didn’t even know the difference between cable and fiber optic! We need to choose an Internet provider for our new house. I’m doing research on that topic now, and it seems like we should go with fiber optic.

  • Justin Knox  July 1, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    Thanks for the help. I just moved and am looking for an internet service provider. I definitely want to find a service with good help and support, as you mentioned. How would you determine that before making the decision?

    • Rogers Clawson  August 19, 2016 at 3:02 pm

      It all depends on whether you are looking for residential or business support! We are experts in helping businesses find optimal Internet solutions, among other services. Let us know if we can help!