5 Common reasons behind slow internet and how to fix them

5 Common reasons behind slow internet and how to fix them

A snail-paced internet connection is a productivity killer. You'll have a hard time finishing tasks because websites load slowly, video conferences get disconnected, and email attachments take forever to upload.

In order for you to speed up your internet connection, you should know what's causing the issue in the first place. There are several possible reasons behind slow internet, including the following:

Insufficient bandwidth

Your internet service provider (ISP) gives you a specific bandwidth allocation with your internet plan. Bandwidth is often measured in megabits per second (Mbps) and is usually mistaken for internet speed. In reality, it refers to the amount of information transmissible through your internet connection within a given time period. Therefore, if you're on a 50Mbps plan, your internet connection can only transmit up to 50Mb of data in a second.

Different online activities use up certain amounts of bandwidth. Activities that consume too much bandwidth, such as streaming high-definition videos or downloading large files, can result in lag. If you regularly engage in such activities and would like to speed up your internet connection, then you should consider upgrading to a plan with a higher bandwidth allocation.

Weak Wi-Fi signal

Many things can weaken Wi-Fi signals. Physical barriers like concrete walls can dampen the radio waves that comprise Wi-Fi. Certain appliances emit wireless signals and other things that can interfere with Wi-Fi signals. And naturally, the farther away you are from a signal's source, the weaker that signal will be.

To resolve this issue, put your router in an elevated location close to where you usually work to reduce interference by walls and appliances. If you work in different areas of your building, position your router as close to the center of the building as possible. This ensures that Wi-Fi signals are evenly distributed throughout your home or office. If it’s impractical to move your router, you can expand its signal’s reach by installing a wireless range extender instead.

Data cap

Some ISPs impose a data cap on their internet plans, which limits the amount of data you can use within a month. Exceeding the data cap results in your internet speeds slowing down immensely. You have several options to prevent or address this problem.

For one, search for an ISP that does not have a cap on their internet plans. If caps are unavoidable, choose internet plans within your budget that feature limits far above the amount of data you use in a month. The average remote worker consumes anywhere from 8 to 20GB in a month. These figures, however, may increase if your job involves activities like video and audio streaming, which require high volumes of internet bandwidth.

Discourage everyone sharing your internet connection from engaging in activities that unnecessarily consume large amounts of data. If you can afford it, you may also secure a dedicated internet connection for remote work.

Too many devices

Some devices connected to your network can consume data for background and maintenance processes, such as downloading updates, slowing down your internet connection as a result. This can happen even when these devices are on standby mode and are not being used. A quick way to resolve the issue is by changing your Wi-Fi password to log out all wireless devices connected to the network. You can then simply re-enter all devices that are actually in use.

Another way is by logging in to your router’s web interface and checking for all devices connected to the network, whether these are active or not. You can then block any device you don’t use.

Outdated devices and software

It could be that your internet connection isn’t slow, but that your devices cannot process your Wi-Fi speeds. Some older devices can support just a specific internet speed and won’t run any faster even when connected to high-bandwidth connections. Still, this may not even be a hardware issue and have everything to do with your device’s outdated operating system (OS). So before you upgrade to a newer model, check if updating the OS resolves the problem.

The state of your business tech, including your internet connection, has a significant impact on your productivity. That’s why Complete Technology is here to ensure that all elements of your IT system are in top condition at any time. Start maximizing your business’s tech when you contact us today.


Various cybersecurity mistakes can result in massive data breaches. Learn how your business can avoid them with our FREE eBook.Learn more here
+ +