Broadband for small business: all you need to know

Small business broadband icon

Today, pretty much any company needs a decent broadband and phone package, even small ones - whether it’s for taking customers’ calls, running a website, or doing some online banking.

Not all businesses need super complicated business broadband. A local café is unlikely to need a leased line, and a complex business phone system is hardly necessary if you just get a few calls a day.

Nonetheless, a business broadband package could well be worth it - partly for the ex-VAT prices, and partly for the extra dedicated services on offer. Here's what your small business can get.

On the other hand, if you've got a large business and need something more complex, ring 0800 092 5745 for more info.

Best small business deals

Here are some of the best current deals for small businesses:

Package Broadband Speed Contract Length Monthly Cost
Onebill Telecom Broadband Only 0Mb average 24 months £24.95
Onebill Telecom Broadband & Unlimited Calls 0Mb average 24 months £34.95
TalkTalk Business Simply Business Broadband 0Mb average 12 months £18.00
TalkTalk Business Complete Business Broadband with Anytime Calls 0Mb average 12 months £24.00
TalkTalk Business Simply Business Fibre 0Mb average 24 months £21.95
TalkTalk Business Complete Business Fibre with Anytime Calls 0Mb average 24 months £24.00
  • Broadband Only
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £9.99 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £24.95 per month
    24 month contract
  • Broadband & Unlimited Calls
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £9.99 up-front costs
    • Anytime calls inc.
    • £34.95 per month
    24 month contract
  • Simply Business Broadband
    7 day UK business support
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £8.99 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £18.00 per month
    12 month contract
  • Complete Business Broadband with Anytime Calls
    7 day UK business support
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £8.99 up-front costs
    • Day, eve & wknd calls inc.
    • £24.00 per month
    12 month contract
  • Simply Business Fibre
    7 day UK business support
    • Speeds up to* 76Mbps
    • £8.99 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £21.95 per month
    24 month contract
  • Complete Business Fibre with Anytime Calls
    7 day UK business support
    • Speeds up to* 76Mbps
    • £8.99 up-front costs
    • Day, eve & wknd calls inc.
    • £24.00 per month
    24 month contract

*This is the maximum possible speed. Broadband speed may be lower at peak times and can be affected by a range of technical and environmental factors. The speed you receive where you live may be lower than that listed above. Fibre/cable services at your postcode are subject to availability. You can confirm availability on the provider's website. Providers may increase charges. You should have the right to exit your contract without penalty if this happens.

What could a small business get from a broadband package?

  • Faster speeds, including faster upload speeds. Decent upload speeds are vital if you're hosting a website, for instance, and faster speeds in general means it's easier to access work materials, upload files, sync data, hold video calls, and so on. It'll also offer extra bandwidth if multiple people need to get online at once. A business package can help guarantee you're not slowed down - and can even offer public Wi-Fi for customers or clients.
  • Priority customer support. When you're running a business that needs the internet or a phone line, you can't afford for anything to go wrong - so most broadband providers offer prioritised customer service and tech support for businesses.
  • Static IP address. While most home connections have a dynamic IP address, which changes every time you connect your router, with business broadband you can get a static IP, which always stays the same. This is essential if you want to run a website, host a VPN, run CCTV, or access your PC desktop remotely. Read more about static IPs.
  • Internet security. Online security is vital, but even more so when you're dealing with sensitive business data or using that static IP. A program to protect from malware, phishing, and hacking is generally included as standard with broadband packages, including home ones - though some offer more business-oriented security. Read more about cybersecurity for SMEs.
  • Web hosting. This could include your own domain name with email addresses, or cloud storage to back up your data and files.
  • Business phone lines. Besides perfect reliability, the phone line for your business may also need an easily-remembered number - or an extra line entirely, perhaps to separate it from your home number if you work from home. That's where a business phone package comes in.

So which providers have suitable solutions?

Vodafone for small business

Package Broadband Speed Contract Length Monthly Cost
Vodafone Business Essentials Superfast 1 (Existing Mobile Customers) 0Mb average 18 months £17.50
Vodafone Business Essentials Superfast 2 (Existing Mobile Customers) 0Mb average 18 months £20.83
  • Essentials Superfast 1 (Existing Mobile Customers)
    £100 Amazon Voucher
    • Online Exclusive
    • Speeds up to* 35Mbps
    • Pay As You Go phone
    • Offer ends
    • £17.50 per month
    18 month contract
  • Essentials Superfast 2 (Existing Mobile Customers)
    £100 Amazon Voucher
    • Online Exclusive
    • Speeds up to* 63Mbps
    • Pay As You Go phone
    • Offer ends
    • £20.83 per month
    18 month contract

*This is the maximum possible speed. Broadband speed may be lower at peak times and can be affected by a range of technical and environmental factors. The speed you receive where you live may be lower than that listed above. Fibre/cable services at your postcode are subject to availability. You can confirm availability on the provider's website. Providers may increase charges. You should have the right to exit your contract without penalty if this happens.

Vodafone business broadband is well priced, with simple, fast and reliable packages at prices that start at around £20 per month.

Its Essentials Superfast 1 package gets you an average download speed of 35Mbps (guaranteed minimum of 25Mbps), as well as a static IP address, unlimited usage, a Vodafone WiFi hub and a free three-month trail of F-Secure SAFE security software.

Priced a little higher, Essentials 2 offers all the same features. But gets you a faster service, with an average speed of 63Mbps and guaranteed minimum of 55Mbps.

Other key selling points include:

  • Option to add more static IP addresses for an extra charge
  • F-Secure is free for three months and offered at discounted rate if you extend for 12 months
  • Discounted business broadband for existing Vodafone business mobile phone customers

TalkTalk for small business

Package Broadband Speed Contract Length Monthly Cost
TalkTalk Business Simply Business Broadband 0Mb average 12 months £18.00
TalkTalk Business Complete Business Broadband with Anytime Calls 0Mb average 12 months £24.00
  • Simply Business Broadband
    7 day UK business support
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £8.99 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £18.00 per month
    12 month contract
  • Complete Business Broadband with Anytime Calls
    7 day UK business support
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £8.99 up-front costs
    • Day, eve & wknd calls inc.
    • £24.00 per month
    12 month contract

*This is the maximum possible speed. Broadband speed may be lower at peak times and can be affected by a range of technical and environmental factors. The speed you receive where you live may be lower than that listed above. Fibre/cable services at your postcode are subject to availability. You can confirm availability on the provider's website. Providers may increase charges. You should have the right to exit your contract without penalty if this happens.

TalkTalk (www.talktalk.co.uk) has a pretty wide range of services for businesses of all sizes. Smaller companies will likely be most interested in its basic broadband and phone - available as an ADSL connection with up to 17Mb download speeds, or fibre optic with speeds up to 76Mb. You'll get unlimited downloads, WorkSafe internet security, and the Talk2Go app for your smartphone.

There's plenty of voice and calling services too. Most are better suited to larger offices or companies with multiple sites, but small businesses can still snag a phone line tailored for business use, with options to add things like anytime calls and easy-to-remember business numbers.

XLN Telecom for small business

Package Broadband Speed Contract Length Monthly Cost
XLN for small business Unlimited Broadband & Phone Line 0Mb average 24 months £19.95
XLN for small business Unlimited Broadband & UK Calls 0Mb average 24 months £24.95
  • Unlimited Broadband & Phone Line
    Free router and setup!
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £9.99 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £19.95 per month
    24 month contract
  • Unlimited Broadband & UK Calls
    Free router and setup!
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £9.99 up-front costs
    • Day, eve & wknd calls inc.
    • £24.95 per month
    24 month contract

*This is the maximum possible speed. Broadband speed may be lower at peak times and can be affected by a range of technical and environmental factors. The speed you receive where you live may be lower than that listed above. Fibre/cable services at your postcode are subject to availability. You can confirm availability on the provider's website. Providers may increase charges. You should have the right to exit your contract without penalty if this happens.

XLN's packages are kind of perfect for small business - there's a big range, all designed with businesses like yours in mind. For line rental, ADSL broadband, and fibre, you can choose between two packages - Basix and Max.

There's everything from a basic pay-as-you-go landline, all the way up to 76Mb unlimited fibre optic business broadband with unlimited UK landline calls.

Its services are also excellent value, and you'll get 24/7 UK-based customer support, multiple email addresses, and the option to add extras - like internet security or a business mobile SIM.

BT for small business

Package Broadband Speed Contract Length Monthly Cost
BT Business Broadband Essential + Value Line Deal 0Mb average 24 months £19.99
BT Business Broadband Essential + Standard Line Rental 0Mb average 24 months £25.99
  • Broadband Essential + Value Line Deal
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £8.50 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £19.99 per month
    24 month contract
  • Broadband Essential + Standard Line Rental
    • Speeds up to* 17Mbps
    • £8.50 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £25.99 per month
    24 month contract

*This is the maximum possible speed. Broadband speed may be lower at peak times and can be affected by a range of technical and environmental factors. The speed you receive where you live may be lower than that listed above. Fibre/cable services at your postcode are subject to availability. You can confirm availability on the provider's website. Providers may increase charges. You should have the right to exit your contract without penalty if this happens.

BT (www.bt.com) has a huge range of deals for businesses of all sizes. The basic connection on offer is either BT Broadband, with download speeds up to 17Mb, or BT Infinity, a fibre optic package with speeds up to 38Mb or 76Mb.

You can get an Unlimited package, for unlimited downloads; or Premium, which gets you extras like Microsoft Office 365 and personalised 'Tech Heads' customer support.

All come with free access to Wi-Fi hotspots across the country and the option of a static IP address.

Business line rental is available either on its own or bundled with broadband, and gets you prioritised customer care. Calling features can be added on, including three-way calling, call divert, withhold number, and more.

bOnline for small business

Package Broadband Speed Contract Length Monthly Cost
bOnline Unlimited Business Broadband + Unlimited UK Landline + Mobile Calls 0Mb average 24 months £17.95
bOnline Unlimited Business Broadband 0Mb average 12 months £16.00
  • Unlimited Business Broadband + Unlimited UK Landline + Mobile Calls
    • Speeds up to* 24Mbps
    • £9.95 up-front costs
    • Day, eve & wknd calls inc.
    • £17.95 per month for months 1-12
    • £29.95 per month for months 13-24
    24 month contract
  • Unlimited Business Broadband
    • Speeds up to* 24Mbps
    • £9.95 up-front costs
    • Pay as you go phone
    • £16.00 per month
    12 month contract

*This is the maximum possible speed. Broadband speed may be lower at peak times and can be affected by a range of technical and environmental factors. The speed you receive where you live may be lower than that listed above. Fibre/cable services at your postcode are subject to availability. You can confirm availability on the provider's website. Providers may increase charges. You should have the right to exit your contract without penalty if this happens.

Small business broadband specialist bOnline focuses on affordable, simple to understand internet options and top-notch customer service. Its packages gives you speeds of up to 24Mb, 40Mb or 80Mb, all with unlimited downloads.

It also offers additional business services, including web design and search engine optimisation (SEO). To find out more about bOnline, check out our full guide.

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