A Buyers Guide to Business Broadband 

Are you looking for more information about our business broadband offering? You’ve come to the right place; this in-depth guide will provide you with all the information you need to make an informed purchase for your business connectivity needs.

The main difference between consumer and business broadband is in the higher speeds offered to facilitate efficient ways of working, 24/7 availability, and in terms of the technology differences, it’s usually comprised of WiFi, DSL’s and Fibre.

Some key features that differentiate business broadband are:

  • Quicker and more reliable than a standard consumer line
  • Comprehensive security features
  • Static IP addresses
  • Low contention ratio
  • VPN included (Virtual Private Network)
  • Off-site backup

Cutting through the jargon

The world of business broadband and connectivity is full of jargon and confusing acronyms and as much as we would all like to profess to be experts, it can be tricky to navigate when you are looking for your first business broadband service or comparing renewal options against current suppliers.

Understanding what the acronyms mean gives you a better understanding of which option is best for your business. So, let’s take a journey through the somewhat confusing world of connectivity terms and acronyms:

  • LAN – Local Area Network; a network connecting computers within a specific, limited area.
  • WAN – Wide Area Network; a telecoms network covering a large geographic area.
  • FTTC – Fibre to the Cabinet; internet connection that utilises fibre lines to the local cabinet and then copper wires to your premises.
  • FTTP – Fibre to the Premises; internet connection that utilises fibre cables directly to your premises, eliminating the need for copper wires.
  • ADSL – Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line; the technology behind traditional copper lines.
  • SoGEA – Single Order Generic Ethernet Access; business broadband connection that bypasses the need for a traditional phone line, often used with VoIP solutions.
  • G.Fast – A faster alternative to FTTP.

The difference between leased lines and business broadband

When it comes to business connectivity, there are generally two choices; business broadband or leased lines. Let’s look at just some of the differences between the two to help you make the right decision:


Generally, leased lines are a lot more expensive than business broadband. This primarily comes down to speed. Leased lines come with their own dedicated connection which no one else has access to other than your business, making it faster but also significantly more expensive. Business broadband is contended as you share bandwidth with other broadband providers in the area. This influences the speed but does make it cheaper. It is important to note that standard business broadband speeds are perfectly acceptable for most micro through to SME businesses.

Lead times

Business broadband lines can often be installed and operational within 10-15 days whilst leased lines have a much longer lead time for installation and can often take up to 60 days for end-to-end deployment.


Leased line speeds are generally offered at up to 10Gbps whereas business broadband lines are a lot slower. This is great if you are a smaller business for whom a super-fast connection is not business critical. It will also save you money over a fast leased line connection that you may not need.

Business needs

The decision over whether to opt for broadband or leased lines is often on a business-by-business case. As explained above, standard business broadband connections will typically suit micro-businesses or SMEs that do not need or cannot afford a dedicated leased line connection. Larger businesses should generally look to purchase a leased line, but it is not uncommon for them to also have a broadband connection as a backup.

Contract length

Leased lines are generally sold on 12-36 month contracts. Business broadband contracts tend to be a lot shorter, often up to 24 months. What’s more, shorter leased line contracts often come with a large installation charge which isn’t an issue you will have with broadband.

ISDN/PSTN Switch off

Although mainly a telephony issue, it is worth noting the relevance of the ISDN switch off in relation to business broadband.

All businesses should be aware by now that BT is switching off the Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) by 2025. This means that it will no longer be possible to make phone calls, video calls and other services using a traditional Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN).

This has implications for broadband connections as, up until now, a traditional telephone line has been needed to deliver a broadband connection. However, now that there is no longer a need for a PSTN line, further broadband options for businesses are opening up. With this change, lots of businesses are now able to utilise the speed of an SoGEA connection which already includes an underlying phone line.

Why choose Gradwell?

We are experts in the field of business connectivity. For over twenty years we have been helping businesses improve their operations and communications by providing reliable, fast, and secure business broadband. We compare the prices of a range of different suppliers to provide you with the right solution tailored to your specific business needs at highly competitive prices.

Why UK businesses choose Gradwell for business broadband: 

UK based expert technical support, available 24/7

A wide range of suppliers to choose from

Easy management

Significant discounts

A secure network – ISO certified

Trusted by thousands

Levels and pricing structure

Our business broadband offering comprises several options for businesses looking to upgrade their connectivity. We have three pricing options, reflecting our three business broadband options.



Up to 17Mbps



Per month

  • Choice of router from Draytek or Technicolor
  • Free static IP address
  • Includes line rental



Up to 80Mbps



Per month

  • Choice of router from Draytek or Technicolor
  • Free static IP address
  • Includes line rental


FTTP & G.Fast

Up to 330Mbps



Per month

  • Choice of router from Draytek or Technicolor
  • Free static IP address
  • Includes line rental

Questions to ask business broadband providers

How much does installation cost

This one is self-explanatory, and it goes without saying that one of the first questions you should be asking is how much installing a broadband connection will cost.

How long will installation take?

This is important to ask, as installation and lead times will vary between providers. Depending on how business critical the timescale is, this will be an important question to ask. Generally, lead times for installation of business broadband are around 10-15 days.

What is coverage like in my postcode?

Don’t take it for granted that every provider will have perfect coverage across all areas nationally. Connection quality can differ from area to area so it is important to know whether your exact postcode will have sufficient coverage to fulfil your business needs.

What is your uptime guarantee?

A common frustration amongst business broadband customers can be slow speeds or interruptions to their connection which can affect productivity and ultimately the bottom line. Take some time to discuss with your chosen provider about guarantees regarding uptimes, look for providers that can offer a 100% guarantee.

What happens if there is a dropout?

Every minute that your service is interrupted, you are potentially losing money. The cost of downtime has been estimated at £4700 per minute for some businesses. Make sure that you know the service levels and SLAs that you will be given by your provider to help minimise business interruptions.

What makes you different from other providers?

You may think that broadband providers are ten a penny and all offer pretty much the same service. Whilst that may be true for some, for others it couldn’t be further from the truth. Some of the best providers that we compare for you will offer extra services on top of their broadband offering. This can include things such as hosted private branch exchanges, automated backups, and off-site data centres.

Get started

Our main goal is to make your life easier and we believe that purchasing a business broadband solution should have as few barriers as possible. To find out more about our range of connectivity options, click below to speak to an expert and get started.

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