Five Easy Steps For Making Your Upgrade Simple and Effective
CONGRATULATIONS! Your small business has taken off. But now, the residential-level Wi-Fi network you began with no longer serves your needs. Security has become a higher priority, you have more users and business visitors to serve, and you need to up your game in employee productivity, customer satisfaction, and sales. No worries, though. Growth is a sure sign of success. These are good challenges to have.
If you stick to the basics, upgrading to business grade Wi-Fi can be easier than you think. Here’s how to get there in five easy steps.
Step 1 — Choose the Right WI-FI Solution
Sounds too basic? You’d be surprised how many small business owners believe all Wi-Fi networks are essentially the same. This couldn’t be further from the truth. For help choosing the right WI-FI solution, refer to the first article in this series: Choosing the Right Small Business Wi-Fi Solution.
Step 2 — Select the Right Equipment
With more access points to service, within and beyond the walls of your business — and with greater bandwidth to provide, it’s time to go commercial grade with your router, modem, and switch. Retail options will no longer do. Consult a local Internet provider like Astound to help you select and custom-configure this higher-grade equipment.
Step 3 — Consider Whether You Need a Managed Network
A managed network is one where network services like IT operations, app functions, and security protocols, just to name a few, are outsourced to a third-party Internet provider and are operated, monitored, and maintained remotely. This can be a good option for growing businesses who would rather keep their internal resources focused on generating business and servicing customers than on managing communications technology.
Step 4 — Secure Your Growing Network From Vulnerability
With greater growth, comes greater exposure, which can increase vulnerability. But before you call in the security cavalry, you can implement easy and affordable measures to boost protection right now. Create a stronger network password, for instance, or utilize your provider’s Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) encryption option, instead of the more standard Wired Equivalency Privacy (WEP) setting, which dramatically improves security. Or you can shield your IP address completely from the outside world behind your own Virtual Private Network (VPN).
Step 5 — Set Up Guest WI-FI Access
Guest Wi-Fi lets you create a different network name and password for any visitors to your network. The advantage? It allows you to limit non-employee access, restricting what they can see or do. Plus, it protects your network from unintentional infection by malware visitors may be carrying.
Avoid common pitfalls along the way. Have your Internet Service Provider (ISP) conduct a site survey to determine your needs upfront. Establish multiple Service Set Identifiers (SSIDs), which are unique network names and passwords, to better control network access. Lastly, since this is a next-level upgrade, don’t try to do it yourself.
By implementing these five simple steps, you’ll be well on your way to getting your business-grade Wi-Fi network up and running.
Fast, Reliable, Secure Business Wi-Fi
Astound Business Solutions offers simple, affordable, and secure WI-FI options for businesses of all sizes — supporting hundreds of devices and keeping everyone connected wherever they work. Learn more at https://www.astound.com/business/smb/internet/wifi/.