Wednesday, January 05, 2011

The SMB Sweet Spot

As SMB move to VoIP, Hosted UC, and Cloud services, broadband will not be the best answer for Internet Access. Quality of Service will be required. And likely more than "best effort" bandwidth. This is why New Edge (now EarthLink Business) and MegaPath (combo of Covad, Speakeasy and Megapath) are having success selling MPLS.

The other sweet spot for ISP's is Metro Ethernet. EoC and EFM are great ways to provide bigger bandwidth to SMB over copper pairs. I'm not discounting bonding ADSL2+ or VDSL2, but EoC is a sweet spot for value and margin.

Here is an article from the MSP Mentor that demonstrates the sweet spot for MegaPath.

At $259 per month, MegaPath’s Ethernet 2×2 service offers the lowest cost per megabit on the market, according the company. It provides 99.99 percent uptime backed by SLAs and dedicated access to fast symmetrical upload and download speeds, providing promised speeds. Additionally, voice services on Ethernet 2×2 are backed by QoS guarantees. ..MegaPath noted the service is accessible to 90 percent of businesses nationwide.

Meanwhile, there is an article in CP about SMB and Cloud services. It seems that many small and medium businesses want to move to the cloud but haven't a clue how to do it. This is where you can help -- and move into the managed services space.

"More mid-sized businesses are ready to turn to cloud computing, according to new findings from tech consulting firm The Armada Group. They’re not ready to make the journey alone, though, which spells opportunity for channel partners developing their cloud portfolios and sales techniques."

Even MSP's are emphasizing Cloud Services to their client base and prospects. Cloud services is driving M&A. Cbeyond buying Aretta and MaximumASP; Windstream and Cincinnati Bell buying data center; BroadVox’s acquisition of Cypress; and mindSHIFT’s buyout of Alpheon. Not to mention moves by Intel, Dell, EMC and HP. All shifting due to Cloud buzz. What is your Cloud strategy?

Even the move to Hosted PBX (also known as Hosted UC or Communications as a Service or CAAS or Cloud Communications) could be the first step for an ISP beyond broadband and stand-alone Internet Access. Bundles are what people are buying because they want one throat to choke. Make it yours in 2011.

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