Posted by: the3rdi | October 21, 2010

Business broadband more important than gas or water to UK SMEs

Business broadband more important than gas or water to UK SMEs

  • 76% claimed broadband essential to running of business, yet 37% do not know their broadband speed
  • Email and online banking most common uses of broadband

Broadband internet access is more important to the UK’s SME sector than gas and water supply, according to a survey of over 657 small business owners conducted by small business telecom and broadband specialist XLN Telecom.

When asked to rate which services are essential to the running of their company, 77% cited telephone, followed closely by electricity (76%), then business broadband (67%), water (39%) and gas (19%). In response to the issue of whether broadband is critical to the running of their organisation, 76% of SME owners stated that it was an essential tool for them.

The value of broadband to UK small businesses has increased dramatically over the past decade; 61% said that it was important 2 years ago and – 42% stated it was critical 5 years ago, compared to only 11% who felt access to the internet was a core requirement 10 years ago.

Despite the clear business case for broadband, 37% of respondents were unsure of the broadband speed provided by their current supplier.

In terms of how business broadband is used, email tops the list, used by 91%, followed by online banking (62%), conducting research (61%), general administration (42%), external customer relations (25%), VoIP (10%) and training (9%).

XLN’s founder and managing director, Christian Nellemann, comments:

“A decade ago, SMEs were very much at the end of the broadband trail but, as the results of our survey show, this has changed dramatically. Today, the vast majority of companies of this size simply cannot function without business broadband, and decision makers have a right to call for packages suited to their organisation in terms of scale, service and cost.”


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