For today’s small businesses that run from a SOHO (Small Office and/or Home Office), a reliable internet connection is key to having a successful business.  With many small businesses using SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) cloud applications, reliable internet service is crucial.  However, small business owners are often too busy running their business to deal with optimizing their internet service.  This post is written with that in mind and to encourage small business owners to review some simple tips to save themselves some grief.  Here are 5 tips for cloud computing success:

  1. Run a speed test.   Compare the results with the advertised results of what your ISP advertises for that given plan.  They should be reasonably close.  If they’re not, run the test a couple more times to be sure, then call your ISP.  For example, if your ISP promises up to 50 Mbps download speed then you should be above 40 Mbps.  If you measure 5 Mbps then you have a problem.
  2. Buy only what you need but don’t skimp.  Get a monthly plan that provides you the bandwith that you need.  Upload speed is usually the important number to look for and I recommend plans that have 1 Mbps or above upload speed.   For cloud based phone services like RingCentral, upload speed is the limiting factor.  Make sure that there is adequate upload speed using the speed test above.  Better yet try the RingCentral connection quality tool.  Each phone/user will require 90 Kbps upload speed. Unless you need an unlimited monthly transfer limit (for gamers and movie fanatics), avoid plans with massive download speeds.
  3. Understand what cloud services require more bandwidth than others.  Google services like Gmail and Calendar don’t require much bandwidth, but file syncing apps or backup apps like Google Drive or IDrive respectively might.
  4. Secure your SOHO network with a good quality business router/ firewall.  Even though your data is safely stored in the cloud, a good piece of hardware or two will keep your network and will also prioritize voice traffic.
  5. Optimize your wireless network.  If you have a wireless network, make sure to follow these tips to optimize your signal quality to give you a better mobile experience within your small business work environment.

Do you have questions about how your business can operate in the cloud?


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