Be Broad-minded in How You Use Broadband

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Few entrepreneurs would consider running their company without high-speed broadband Internet. Yet many small business owners may be missing opportunities to use broadband to boost business efficiency and lower their costs, according to a report from the Internet Innovation Alliance and the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council.

A key savings opportunity mentioned in the report is opting for Voice-over-IP (VoIP) service rather than a traditional business line. The report puts the average cost of a traditional business line at $58 a month (excluding taxes and fees) or $696 annually for an unlimited nationwide plan. In contrast, eight popular VoIP providers in the U.S. offer their services for an average cost of $22 a month or $264 annually, the report notes. Most offer small-office/home-office (SOHO) VoIP options for even less, as low as $6.78 per month ($81.36 a year).

These VoIP providers offer unlimited nationwide calling (incoming and outgoing), most on a month-to-month contract basis. Several of them sweeten the deal with free set-up and headsets, and even a free second business line. (If they don’t offer these add-ons upfront, it certainly doesn’t hurt to ask.)

Adapted from Broadband Internet Can Save Startups $16K a Year: Report at eWEEK.

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