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Business Broadband Only Package

sourceit
Grafter
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎08-06-2007

Business Broadband Only Package

Hi
I know PlusNet is generally supplier of internet with lots of added value, but have you not considered doing just a broadband line with or without email?  I'm sure even the Broadband Business Premier (one with 832k upload) could be lowered in price if it didn't have two included domains, fax2email, etc, etc.  You don't take into account the slight larger company that has and exchange server in place that don't need all the extra bells and whistles or companies that have everything else in place and just need broadband.
If you do this, then let me know so I can change an order I've placed.  Grin
15 REPLIES 15
sourceit
Grafter
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎08-06-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Maybe a build your own broadband package a bit like the Residential build your own broadband package options.
Mark
Grafter
Posts: 1,852
Registered: ‎04-04-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Hi there.
This is absolutely a sound idea and one which we have given much consideration to.
A wires only type product, imho, would sell and we will give this further serious thought. To set expectations though I wouldnt expect much in the way of movement until the New Year.
sourceit
Grafter
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎08-06-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Yeah, I remember when broadband went to wires only, and that was it - wires only.  Them were the days  Roll_eyes
sourceit
Grafter
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎08-06-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Hi
If you take Dell as the comparison
1) Dell were No.1 and are now No.2 due to shoddy support.
PlusNet shouldn't have this problem so long as BT don't interfere and more support to useless Indian call centres.
2) Custom builds on Dell's website do sometime come out quite expensive, but Dell do have pre-built models that a customers can just buy and are discounted better.
Should PlusNet follow this plan, it would be good and maybe even able to use it on all products, but would the implementation costs outweigh the profit obtainable by putting this in place.
Yes the business section does need a refresh.
Mark
Grafter
Posts: 1,852
Registered: ‎04-04-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

I love the idea of build your own broadband and in fairness this is what Ian had planned for BBYW and I am sure we'll acheive that goal to its full extent in the future.
Moving that model to our business products makes perfect sense and is something I'd love to see happen especially as driving Business sales is part of my remit.
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Yes the business section does need a refresh.

Agreed and it's long overdue. We are currently looking to revamp our product pages cause they are poor not just from a look and product info perspective but the entire customer journey and the messaging needs an overhaul.
Our products themselves wont change that much initially, however we will offer enhancements such as MAX Premium, Enhanced Care and one or two other added features. The reason why we wont change them too much, is because they are fantastic and there is little out there to touch them in terms of what we offer, our price point and the level of support which we provide. We just do a poor job of providing the necessary information in a sensible way. Smiley
But I do like the idea of build you own product and only pay for what you need. The way things are right now with our development workstack dictates that we wont see any work on changing our business products until the early part of the new year though I hope to deliver a refresh to the Business pages and sales journey much quicker than that.
Ultimately this forum is your vehicle for driving that change and we wany you guys, our business customers to influence our product set and help us to build the products and services you need. Thats one reason why I am loving this thread.


sourceit
Grafter
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎08-06-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

The reason I brought all of this up is a have a company with four sites.  30 users at each site using internet for browsing and proprietary websites from car manufacturers, email and a car dealer system.  Therefore the high bandwidth up and down is essential.  I have checked all sites and the link at 3 says 6.5 to 8Mb and the last one ony 1Mb.  The thing is, is that I will have to order 4 x Business premier accounts which will give me 8 .co.uk domain names and all the other bells and whistles that are not needed.  Now you might see where I am coming from with this.  At least an option to opt out of the domain and save a couple of quid the same as you can opt in for a domain for £1 per month.
decomplexity
Rising Star
Posts: 493
Thanks: 26
Registered: ‎30-07-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

PJ's comment: The danger is that less popular components are pushed up in price so far that small companies (who tend to need everything) are forced elsewhere. may well be correct but I don't see that as a danger.
<soapbox>
I have been beating a drum on these boards for a year or so for PN to seriously consider offering cost-based pricing for services rather than have some users subsidise others. PN then do not have unprofitable customers: their price rises to an extent that they depart for other ISPs.
Cost-based pricing also leads to the ability to offer a full build- it-yourself service - like an elaboration of BBYW - where the customer can pick and choose. If some element of service or infrastructure becomes niche or little used and its price then goes up, so what? This is exactly what PN should want to happen. It entails non-linear price cards in which the cost of some item of service (a customer's download volume per day, say) ramps up sharply when the customer's demand exceeds the basic design of the current infrastructure (e.g. if a customer suddenly tries to download 4000GB). PN should treat its target 'discerning' customers (Lee Straffords's words... but still relevant) as business people who don't want artificial restrictions and large jumps when moving from one package to another - they don't want to move packages at all - just pay an equitable amount for the additional service they want.
Marketing people generally hate the idea of cost-based pricing but management accountants usually love it.
Nothing would prevent PN from trying to create a market in some new service or technology with an overt subsidy, but this should have a finite life and be removed when the seeding period is over.
</soapbox>
Zen from May 17. PN Business account from 2004 - 2017
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Thanks: 2
Registered: ‎04-04-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Morning.
I've actually been doing some business product analysis comparing us to other business SPs and we do actually come out rather well.
From my perspective, businesses will not have a clue how much data they will be downloading, so offering a Business Premier PAYG equivalent service would put off a number of people in my opinion.
I think it would actually put off a number of customers rather than encourage them.
decomplexity
Rising Star
Posts: 493
Thanks: 26
Registered: ‎30-07-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Hmm...there is nothing whatever wrong with offering product 'bundles' in the way PN does now: most customers won't want to custom-build their own service (and won't  have the know-how to do so either). if I buy a PC from (e.g.) Mesh, I can buy one of their standard configurations with one mouse-click. Or I can buy what I really want which entails more work on my part but gives a more cost effective result for me.
Offering bundles should not make life harder for those who want to configure their own service. And - key point - the price of any bundle should be exactly the same as the price resulting if I configure it manually.
And why should Business Premier accounts "not have a clue how much data they will be downloading" (and hence PAYG would be counterproductive) when PAYG is suitable for other  customers; are these latter customers more computer literate than their Business Premier counterparts or it is ther something about 'business' which makes download data volumes too unpredictable?
Don't get me wrong: PN has some good offerings for SOHO businesses. But you could be even better!
Zen from May 17. PN Business account from 2004 - 2017
msssltd
Grafter
Posts: 77
Registered: ‎28-06-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Quote from: decomplexity
Hmm...there is nothing whatever wrong with offering product 'bundles' in the way PN does now: most customers won't want to custom-build their own service (and won't  have the know-how to do so either).
I would suggest that in this context a small business can be defined as a revenue driven organisation with between 5 and 50 employees.  Where a lack of skill in-house has a detrimental effect on revenue they will hire in those skills on an ad-hoc or contract basis.  On the other hand micro-business would encompass individuals who are mainly engaged in making a living.  The micro-business is rather different in so far as each and every cost has a direct effect on the disposable income of the propriators hence they are far more budget sensitive, highly likely to DIY and restrict themselves to those things they can obtain by barter or free of direct charge.
As far as I am concerned the PN Small Business bundles do exactly what they say on the can.  The facilities are eminently suitable for a modern small business.  The cost is little more than the competition but without the caveats, hidden extras and dead ends that plague PNs competition.  When those things become detrimental to revenue they generally cost more to sort out than any saving that might have been made by way of service and provisioning charges. 
I would agree that the PN business bundles may not suit the micro-business quite so well as those business are essentially more focussed on the bottom line than total cost of ownership (TCO) and return on investment (ROI).  The PN domestic bundles might be a more suitable choice.  I do not deal with those sorts of customers so I do not really know.
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Offering bundles should not make life harder for those who want to configure their own service. And - key point - the price of any bundle should be exactly the same as the price resulting if I configure it manually.
I fear you misunderstand that backend IT systems revolve around economy of scale.  They do not cost exactly the sum of the useful parts.  An ISPs revenue model is based on the fact that none of it's customers can justify the cost of operating their own systems connected to an internet backbone.
Quote
And why should Business Premier accounts "not have a clue how much data they will be downloading" (and hence PAYG would be counterproductive) when PAYG is suitable for other  customers; are these latter customers more computer literate than their Business Premier counterparts or it is ther something about 'business' which makes download data volumes too unpredictable?
None of those things really.  The cost of managing traffic would far outweigh the savings that could be made by doing so.  The total cost of resolving a single event caused by failing to manage traffic has the potential to far outstrip the annual ISP service charges.
Quote
Don't get me wrong: PN has some good offerings for SOHO businesses. But you could be even better!
Yes they could.  My interjection on the forums is usually due to having logged into plus.net to resolve a customer issue[1].  By inferrance those are plus.net business customer issues.  While the issue remains unresolved those business are losing money in some way or other.  When employees are prevented from working the impact is two fold; the wages they are paid while unable to do their job and the revenue the business loses because they are not doing their job.
Plus.net can indeed make their products more suitable to the small business by recognising the value of continuity to those business.  Bottom line cost is not the issue and it never will be.  The cost to the business of having critical services offline is. 
Small Business do not need service costs pared to the bone.  Neither do they need the fastest network money can buy.  First and formost they need consistant services which require minimal management and intervention.  They need to get on with the business of earning revenue as cost effictively as possible and without surprises.  Allow them to do so and they will be loyal just as long as the service remains otherwise competitive.
[1]As far as I can tell some bright spark has managed to block the resultion of host and alias DNS records containing 'mail' most likely in an attempt to reduce traffic and spam.  The stupidity of such an action is beyond words.
msssltd
Grafter
Posts: 77
Registered: ‎28-06-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Quote from: PJ
IIRC PlusNet only drop mail from servers that have NO rDNS entry.
PNs mail processing has nothing to do with my customers problem as they have their own SMTP mail server.  All my customer requires of PN is that they operate a standards compliant DNS server that is capable of responding correctly to a query against the hostname mail.mycustomers.domain.
Up to last week there was no problem, which indicates someone at plus.net has been fiddling.  My customer did not ask for the fiddling but will end up paying for the impact such fiddling has on their business.
Whatever features plus.net decide to put in the small business packages need to be delivered reliably.
Moderators note by James_H : Removed whitespace at foot of message body
orbrey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 10,540
Registered: ‎18-07-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Hi there,
Unfortunately we have a problem with the DNS mail records on some hosted domains. This is currently under investigation with our networks team and progress can be tracked at http://status.plus.net
Apologies for the hassle,
decomplexity
Rising Star
Posts: 493
Thanks: 26
Registered: ‎30-07-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Re my statement: "Offering bundles should not make life harder for those who want to configure their own service. And - key point - the price of any bundle should be exactly the same as the price resulting if I configure it manually"
and msssltd’s comment: "I fear you misunderstand that backend IT systems revolve around economy of scale.  They do not cost exactly the sum of the useful parts.  An ISPs revenue model is based on the fact that none of it's customers can justify the cost of operating their own systems connected to an internet backbone."
I suspect we are in general agreement about everything else and completely at cross-purposes with this one!
My proposal was that the cost of a PN bundle (say the current Small Business Premier) should be exactly the same as a hypothetical (but – to me – desirable) PN ‘configure it  yourself’ service whose specification which was identical to that of the PN bundle. In other words, wise PN product marketers pick a few common specifications (e.g. ‘small’, ‘medium’, ‘large’ and ‘jumbo’), and set prices for them using the (hypothetical) configurator  - the same configurator used by ‘configure it yourself’ customers.
Price curves should reflect cost curves and should be broadly linear within the constraints of the infrastructure being used. For example, if I am subscribing for 250MB webspace and now need 300MB, it is irritating and silly to expect me to change bundle: I might just start looking elsewhere.
If, however, I now want to upgrade to 500TB, this request would be out of kilter with the basic design of PN’s infrastructure. If the request was technically feasible, I would shoot up the steeply non-linear tail of the cost curve (and hence the price curve) and pay a disproportionately large (i.e. non linear) multiple of the price of my 100MB as a disincentive to making ‘unreasonable’ requests – unreasonable in the sense that PN is perhaps not my ideal supplier as it would have to make special provision for me, and I should really look to someone else more suited to my needs.
Zen from May 17. PN Business account from 2004 - 2017
Docrob
Grafter
Posts: 68
Registered: ‎21-10-2007

Re: Business Broadband Only Package

Hi there,
Just adding my 2 cents.
I am a business user and for the last 2 years or so have been running my own mail servers etc. I use PN for rDNS, as the Domains use DNS which are managed as part of the domain hosting package and as a backup mail server. The latter is necessary as BT managed to loose my connect and phone line for 3 days whilst they argued that the cut cable on the pole didn't exist.
I would be interested in a mix and match solution as I do not use the bulk of the add ons.
Rob