Few things in life are more annoying than a slow or unreliable WiFi connection. Whether waiting for a map to load during a trip or an email to send at the end of a long day, every second spent staring at a progress bar is time wasted.

The effects of a slow WiFi connection go far beyond a minor annoyance for small businesses– slow processes, frustrated employees and unhappy customers can create loss of ROI very quickly. Although a slower connection may be cheaper, the time and productivity lost create hidden costs that can’t always be seen in scheduled reports.

Why Connectivity Could Be Slow or Expensive

The FCC recently noted that the real culprit of a slow or expensive connection in the U.S. is a lack of competition among providers. Monopolies in major cities across the U.S. lead to higher prices and slower connections than major cities in Europe and Asia.

Within this infrastructure, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) divide customers into two categories: residential and business. Residential customers may use their bandwidth for streaming HD video, games, music, and more simultaneously on a daily basis; on the other hand, business customers use bandwidth even more. This is because there are only so many videos you can watch during prime time hours from 6-10pm while running errands and doing household chores before you have to go to sleep to wake up for work tomorrow.

Businesses constantly download and upload data– especially when working with remote teams, processing financial transactions or connecting to customers. In addition, even a small business of five to ten people is much larger than the average family size of 2.54 people. This means that more people are using more data for longer in order to keep the business running.

Slow Connections & Slow Employees

One day’s work can be accomplished by one full-time employee. The average human thinks 400 words per minute, speaks 125 wpm and types 40 wpm. This means each employee is losing 90% productivity as they type versus how fast they think.

A study by Sandisk found slow WiFi connections cost employees one week per year of productivity, which averages another 2% of inactivity into the mix. This means businesses are paying for only 8% of the full capability of each full-time employee.

This slowdown of productivity decreases overall morale within the company. A recent Gallup poll found 22 million actively disengaged employees costing the economy as much as $350 billion per year alone.

Loss of Revenue

Disengaged employees lead to disengaged customers and loss of sales. Experts forecast that by 2020 there will be more than 257.76 million smartphone users in the U.S. Advancements in WiFi and wearable technology is giving rise to the amount of employee and customer devices.

Mobile users routinely use apps to search for businesses offering free high-speed WiFi connections for customers. Businesses are expected to provide lightning-fast WiFi to service this growing demographic of customers. Whether a retail boutique or a chain restaurant, you need this to compete in your industry.

Speeding Up WiFi Connectivity

To ensure the fastest possible connection for both employees and customers, start by asking your ISP for a connection appropriate to your business needs– not residential or one-size-fits-all business bids. Select a bandwidth that fits your budget and usage.

Slow WiFi is more than just an annoyance-– it costs you in ROI by frustrating customers and employees. Acquiring and maintaining a high-speed internet connection with enough bandwidth to support multiple WiFi users will keep your business in your industry’s most competitive fast lane. Contact our WiFi experts today to learn more!