Dumping dial-up for network connectivity? Before you choose a network provider, be sure to compare true needs and costs.
If you're a retailer or transaction processor and you are migrating from dial-up to network connectivity, you're making the right move. Network connectivity is a faster, more reliable, less costly way to support electronic transactions, back office applications, and device monitoring. The numbers of electronic payment transactions and back office applications a merchant must support are at an all-time high and growing fast. It is no secret that many large and small retailers are dumping dedicated dial-up phone lines for network connectivity.
With today's technology and the right expertise, network connectivity can link existing POS (point of sale) and back office devices to a host processor, corporate network, Internet service provider, or other application service providers (like a payroll service) through a single "data pipe." It enables transaction times that are up to 10 times faster than dial-up and provides up to 99.9% connection reliability. No matter where a retailer is located, some form of network connectivity is currently available. But beware, not all network connectivity providers are the same, and not all solutions are complete.
Educate Yourself Prior To Investing
Whether you're considering TCP/IP (transmission control protocol/Internet protocol) over terrestrial or wireless frame relay, a VSAT (very small aperture terminal), or a VPN (virtual private network) connection, you should know what you need for a complete managed network connectivity solution. This knowledge can help you compare the true costs behind different service offerings and ultimately save you big money, not to mention time and aggravation. As you compare the services (and fees) offered by different network connectivity providers, use the following guidelines to help identify your needs before you invest.
Making an investment in managed network connectivity for your business is a big decision. You must expose all hidden costs before you sign on the dotted line. This way, your network rollout will come in on budget and without surprises.