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Shopping For A Service Provider

Aug 18, 2007
As our consumer market offers us more things at a faster pace it's good to know that one of the skills we have not lost is shopping. That ability to go from place to place checking out prices, sizes and values is what helps us not only find the most economic solution to what we're looking for but also look at all of the elements that make our purchase something specifically for our family. When looking at Internet service providers a certain amount of shopping is good to do. There are a lot of opportunities you could be missing by not checking out the competition. When choosing Internet Service Providers there are three important elements to consider.

How much is it?

For most people the bottom line in looking for an Internet service provider is how much it's going to cost them. Getting on the Internet is an active part of the daily life but we don't want to pay more than we have to for service. Internet service providers offer many different types of price structures to select from. Their basic package runs anywhere from $6.95 for dial-up to $54.95 for extremely fast satellite or broadband service. Most Internet service providers offer a tier of pricing so that you can choose your speed and its cost. If you want a faster rate of transfer or you're going to have to pay more for it. Frequently check the prices Internet service providers advertise. They tend to lower and raise their fees to be competitive in the marketplace. Internet provider AOL recently dropped their fees from their standard $25.90 to $9.95 for basic service. Even if you do research, go back from time to time and take another look.

How fast is it?

One of the major considerations we must make with looking at an ISP is speed. Depending on what we're doing, particularly if we want to watch movies or use other high-speed file transfer requirements, we are going to want a higher speed broadband or satellite connection to do that. In the tier system speed has a lot to do with how the access costs. When looking at speed as an issue, don't just look at the service provider but also look at your own equipment. Older equipment may not be able to run things at a higher speed. Having 100 Mbps output from your cable modem is not going to help if your computer can only broadcast at 52K. Checking your equipment before looking for your service provider is the best methodology.

What do they offer?

Internet service providers offer differ amenities to their customers. Some offer free web storage or web page hosting. Others offer a number of email accounts for people who use their mail for difference purposes. Customer service is something you should also look at. If there is a problem with your connection, how easy is it to get a hold of your Internet service provider? What is the timeframe in which they provide customer service? If you're having trouble uploading software are they able to help you quickly and efficiently? Choosing an Internet service provider is not a one-time thing, but will be an ongoing relationship. So the provider that serves you well is sometimes worth the effort.

Some people like shopping and some people don't. However, when choosing your Internet service provider, a little bit of legwork can save a lot of headache.
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