Almost all UK SMBs suffering Wi-Fi issues

Britain's SMBs could be missing out on huge business opportunities due to Wi-Fi problems, according to new research.

A report from Netgear has found that  nine out of ten UK businesses experience at least one issue with their Wi-Fi that has prevented them from meeting business needs. 

The survey of 1000 UK SMBs across more than fifty sectors identified issues including poor coverage (18 per cent), dropped connections (33 percent) and slow connections (38 percent). 

This is despite 82 percent of SMBs considering it important to offer customers a good Wi-Fi connection, of which half (52 percent) rely on Wi-Fi for customer retention.

Time for Mesh?

The benefits of providing Wi-Fi are evident for those businesses that offer free connectivity to customers, with 16 percent saying it increases footfall and 24 percent saying customers spend more time on the premises. 

Over a third (36 percent) said that Wi-Fi is important for attracting new customers, and over 70 percent said that Wi-Fi is important for providing improved customer service.

Netgear believes that mesh Wi-Fi could provide the answer for many of the issues, however many businesses aren't aware of the service. Mesh Wi-Fi networks operate from a main router connected to the modem, which is supported by a number of satellite modules to help create a single network that can cover a much wider space.

“UK businesses recognise that customers expect a good Wi-Fi connection, and many SMBs rely on Wi-Fi for critical revenue-driving functions,” said Ollie Randall, UK Regional Director of NETGEAR. “However, nine out of ten businesses are still experiencing Wi-Fi issues that are easily preventable with mesh Wi-Fi technology.”

Mike Moore
Deputy Editor, TechRadar Pro

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and fellow Future title ITProPortal, and when he's not keeping track of all the latest enterprise and workplace trends, can most likely be found watching, following or taking part in some kind of sport.