As a business owner, you are faced with many responsibilities and challenges. But it can be rewarding if you have the right tools.
One such tool is SD-WAN, which helps to streamline branch office connections and improve network performance. It can also reduce costs and enable businesses to scale more rapidly.
One of the most important aspects to consider when evaluating an SD-WAN system is its cost. Although SD-WAN has many benefits, the costs can sometimes outweigh the benefits if the technology is not deployed properly. However, there are ways that businesses can minimize their costs and maximize the return on investment from this innovative network technology.
A major part of the SD-WAN price is management and maintenance. Providers of SD-WAN, such as Versa Networks, can help businesses save on maintenance costs by allowing them to manage the system themselves rather than paying for a managed solution. This can result in large savings in recurring expenses.
Another way that SD-WAN can help businesses reduce their costs is by enabling them to use less expensive Internet connections. By sending low-priority data over the public Internet, companies can free up bandwidth on their private MPLS circuits for mission-critical applications requiring high latency and performance.
In addition, SD-WAN can help businesses save on hardware costs by eliminating the need for separate routers and gateways. Companies can reduce the amount of equipment needed at each location by using 4G and 5G cellular networks for connectivity. This can also lead to reduced hardware maintenance costs. In addition, centralized policy management means that companies can have a more unified standard for quality of service and security across the entire network.
Businesses need the flexibility to adapt and respond quickly to changing business needs. However, they often need more support due to rigid network infrastructure. SD-WAN can improve flexibility by enabling organizations to shift traffic based on application performance requirements dynamically. This allows for better application performance and reduces latency. Additionally, it can help reduce reliance on expensive MPLS circuits by sending low-priority data over cheaper public Internet connections and reserving private links for mission-critical or latency-sensitive applications.
SD-WAN can also increase flexibility by allowing businesses to use a wide range of WAN connections, including MPLS, broadband Internet, 4G, and LTE. This helps companies lower costs, save bandwidth, and enhance performance. In addition, it can simplify management and operations by replacing traditional branch office routers.
Additionally, SD-WAN can be combined with advanced security features to offer additional business benefits. These security capabilities include firewalls, intrusion prevention systems (IPS/IPSec), and secure web gateways. This combination can provide an added layer of protection for the entire corporate network and reduce security vulnerabilities.
In the past, companies have needed to backhaul traffic to headquarters from remote branches, but this approach is expensive and can cause performance issues. Using SD-WAN, however, allows for direct connectivity to the cloud and SaaS applications, which reduces costs and improves performance.
A business-grade SD-WAN will offer security tools to help ensure that data is kept safe and secure from cyberattacks. These features include data encryption, dynamic path selection, and link bonding, all of which will help to keep your data protected while it is being transported over the network. In addition, SD-WAN can use a dual connectivity strategy to provide more efficient WAN bandwidth utilization by offloading non-critical data to public internet services and reserving private network capacity for higher-demand traffic like video conferencing or voice over IP (VoIP).
The best SD-WAN providers can deploy and implement the solution without requiring a ground-up rebuild of your existing WAN infrastructure. This will enable you to quickly deploy the solution at new locations and improve business agility and productivity.
Finally, SD-WAN solutions will allow you to use more affordable internet connections while providing just as good performance as MPLS. This will reduce WAN costs while improving bandwidth efficiency and application performance, especially for cloud-based applications.
It will also enable you to eliminate the trombone effect caused by routing data over multiple links using different transport methods like xDSL, cable, 5G, or LTE. This will make your WAN more resilient, ensuring that your employees can access the data they need no matter what happens to their internet connectivity or physical location.
The ability to scale and adapt to changing business needs is a significant advantage of SD-WAN. It can be set up quickly at a new location, and the IT team can adjust bandwidth demands as business operations evolve. This flexibility also reduces IT workload and costs by minimizing the need to configure individual routers at each branch office.
SD-WAN creates a virtual overlay that abstracts underlying private or public WAN connections, such as Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), Internet broadband, fiber, wireless or LTE. This enables IT staff to keep existing relationships while centralizing network control and delivering real-time application traffic management. This includes optimizing network routes, providing security and prioritizing critical performance applications.
It also allows for inexpensive, flexible options like 4G and 5G cellular connectivity for primary or backup links to headquarters. This can lower costs, improve resiliency, and make it easier to connect from remote locations. It also supports digital transformation initiatives by migrating cloud platforms to the corporate data center and enabling secure mobile device access and work-from-home arrangements. In addition, it offers automated policy-based frameworks that are propagated from a centralized controller. This simplifies IT operations and ensures that company-wide standards for quality of service and security are enforced. It also provides advanced encryption capabilities to protect sensitive data as it travels over the public Internet.