Skip To The Main Content
18 August 2016

Five things that Scottish small businesses need to know about broadband


1. Fibre Broadband is faster and more reliable

Fibre broadband differs from basic broadband in that it’s much faster and more reliable in terms of the data it can transfer -  offering speeds of up to 80Mbit/s downloads and 20 Mbit/s uploads* and there are many suppliers in the marketplace to choose from.

For Scottish small businesses it can deliver:

  • Greater efficiency
  • More flexibility
  • Significant cost savings
  • Better business relationships
  • A more skilled and motivated team

2. Fibre broadband is being rolled out across Scotland – check if you can connect yet

Commercial providers are predicted to deliver fibre broadband to 66% of Scotland by the end of 2017. The Scottish Government and its partners are extending this access to high speed fibre broadband to around 95% of Scotland by the end of March 2018, through the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband (DSSB) programme.Blue Green Fibre

A total of £410 million is being invested in the DSSB programme by the Scottish Government and its partners: Highlands and Islands Enterprise, BT, the UK Government through Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), local authorities and the European Regional Development Fund.

The DSSB roll-out consists of two projects – one covering the Highlands and Islands area and the other covering the rest of Scotland.

The principles behind the programme involve bringing faster speeds to as many people as possible with the funding available.

This is a really complex and challenging engineering project. In fact, it’s the most ambitious fibre infrastructure project yet undertaken in Europe. It’s the kind of infrastructure investment that will future-proof us for decades to come and is a key part of the Scottish Government’s plans to ensure that Scotland is a world class digital nation by 2020.

To check if you can connect yet or for further information, visit

3. When you can connect, remember, you’ll need to contact your service provider and ask to switch to fibre broadband, as this doesn’t happen automatically 

setting-up-an-online-business4. Fibre broadband costs less than you might think

Check out the deals Internet Service Providers have available on their websites or use a price comparison website. Ofcom offers advice on managing broadband costs.  In fact some people even find it’s cheaper than their current slower basic broadband. Shop around for a great deal.

5. You can boost your broadband using these tips

  • Check what speeds you’re currently getting

    Carry out a speed test to find out what speed you’re getting – you can find these by searching  for broadband speed tests in your browser

  • Check what speeds you should be getting

    Then call your service provider to find out what speeds you should be getting – based on the package you currently have

  • Check you’re on the best package

    Then ask your service provider if that is the best package available to you

  • Check it’s not your internal wiring that is the problem

    Plug your broadband router directly into your home’s main phone socket and check your speeds again

  • Connect directly
    Use an Ethernet cable to connect your computer directly to your router rather than using WiFi

*These are the top wholesale speeds available from Openreach to all service providers; speeds offered by service providers may vary. 


This article was provided to the FSB by the Scottish Government's Digital Scotland Team 

See how FSB have campaigned on this issue

Lobbying & Campaigning from FSB

Find out more