5 Steps to Improve Wi-Fi Capability For Your Business

May 20th, 2015

blue sky and clouds with WIFI symbol

With more and more people using their personal devices at work, maintaining a strong, secure Wi-Fi network has never been more important. In any modern business, efficient Wi-Fi performance leads to not only shorter loading times and more productivity, but also happier staff and customers. Improving your network performance can often seem like a big task, but we’ve put together five effective tips that will help you maximise your Wi-Fi performance in the office.

1. Test your performance

First things first – test your network and see if there are any obvious problems that need fixing. If your business is using an older router and has a lot of interior walls, or is spread out across a large area, dead spots and range issues may prove to be your problem. Walking around and mapping your Wi-Fi accessibility will help you discover where your Wi-Fi signal is at its strongest and weakest. You should also take note of any high traffic and usage areas within your business.

A simple remedy to weak signals is to either purchase a repeater or to create one with an old router. Repeaters connect to the original router before broadcasting a boosted version of the signal to improve connectivity and Wi-Fi range. If your enterprise has a large number of traffic and usage, however, you may want to consider increasing the number of access points available. By reducing the number of users per access point, Wi-Fi efficiency and speeds can increase significantly.

2. Positioning your router

The location and positioning of your router(s) is also very important to performance and connectivity. As mentioned earlier, businesses with lots of interior walls have a higher chance of their Wi-Fi signal being weakened by the corners. Wi-Fi also experiences a huge reduction in signal strength when it encounters glass, brick, metal, insulation, water, and even people.

This problem can easily be solved by finding a better location for the router to be placed. As Wi-Fi radiates outwards, placing the router near an exterior wall or corner seriously reduces its capability. Instead, try placing the router somewhere in the centre of your business, high up if possible to maximise the strength of its signal. If you do have a lot of interior walls in your businesses, position the router as close to a doorway as possible so as to make it easier for the signal to reach other areas.

3. Reduce unnecessary traffic

One of the easiest ways to improve Wi-Fi performance is by reducing the amount of traffic and user access the signal. If your business is home to a lot of desktop computers, consider the benefits of using cable internet instead of Wi-Fi. Not only are cable connections faster, but they also reduce the amount of users on a Wi-Fi access point, increasing the available capacity to mobile devices.

Another solution is to run a security assessment with your network. This will give you an insight as to what your network is being used for, who is using it, and how much bandwidth certain applications and programs are using. Through this knowledge, appropriate security measures can be enforced, limiting high bandwidth programs like file sharing applications, as well as removing any unauthorised users on the network.

4. Change your channel

Older Wi-Fi routers are prone to interferences from other modern day devices that share the same spectrum. Cordless phones, bluetooth headsets, and even microwaves are just a few of the appliances that can interfere with your signal, reducing your Wi-Fi capability. Your neighbouring networks can create interference if they too are broadcasting on the same channel. The solution is to then choose the best channel possible so as to decrease the amount of interference. So, for example, if neighbouring businesses are using channels 1 and 6, you are likely better off to use channel 11.

5. Upgrade your routers

This is a more expensive option, yet the difference will be immediately noticeable. If your business is still using an older router model, it may be time to upgrade. As newer Wi-Fi standards are developed, they are also adopted in the newer models of our mobile devices and computers. If you’re still using an older router, you could find yourself limiting the potential of your Wi-Fi capability and in turn, your business.

While the cost of upgrading may seem expensive, there is no reason to upgrade everything all at once. Instead, consider possible bottleneck locations and expand from there accordingly. Older routers can be used as repeaters to further extend your Wi-Fi and reduce dead spots in your business.

To get the latest technology installed, and fastest connection speed for your business IT needs, simply contact Connected Intelligence

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