What Are The Best VPN Providers for Small Businesses in 2018?

Small Business Vector

NordVPN is the best VPN for use with your small business. The provider offers top-notch privacy protections, excellent streaming speeds, good global server coverage, great multi-platform and customer support, and allows up to 6 simultaneous connections to the same VPN account.

NordVPN Logo
  • 1,246 Servers in 61 Countries
  • Great Connection Speeds
  • Excellent Privacy Protections
  • 6 Simultaneous Connections

What is a Small Business?

Small businesses can be the accountant down the street, the convenience store on the corner or the bakery next door. Small businesses offer all types of services, including auto repairs, bookkeeping, information technology services, web development, lodging or just about any other service you can think of.

The definition of what a small business is can vary from country to country. In the United States, a business with less than 500 employees can be considered a small business, while Australia limits the number of employees to 50 or less.

Perhaps the best definition I’ve heard of a small business is a company that is privately-owned and operated, limited in size and in revenue depending on the industry. This means an IT firm employing 10 employees is a small business, while a construction firm with 150 employees can be considered a small business as well. 

Top 5 VPNs for Small Business


Provider

Price

Link

1

NordVPN Logo

$6.99

per month

2

Vypr VPN

$5.00

per month

3

PrivateInternetAccess Logo

$3.33

per month

4

IPVanish

$6.49

per month

5

PureVPN Logo

$4.95

per month

Why Does a Small Business Need a VPN?

Small businesses need to remain competitive with their larger brethren in order to attract and keep customers. In order to do this, they need to keep costs down, while still requiring access to files, apps and other vital aspects of their day-to-day operations.

Many small businesses do not have the financial resources to set up their own servers for apps, file storage and databases. This leads to storing files in off-site locations, such as third-party vendors. Employees require access to these resources, and security is a top concern.

A VPN offers small business users the ability to use an encrypted connection to securely access online resources, protecting their own - and their customers’ - sensitive data from prying eyes.

File sharing is enabled by using a VPN. While file sharing is a valid need for businesses,  Internet Service Providers sometimes block peer-to-peer file sharing, due to its use by many to share copyrighted content.

VPNs also allow users to access information in other parts of the world that might normally be blocked by geographical restriction placed by content owners or government agencies.

When businesses have employees on the road, visiting customers or working off-site for other reasons, a VPN offers an encrypted connection to much-needed online resources. For many small businesses, their “home office” is the nearest Starbucks. A VPN keeps their Wi-Fi hotspot internet connection at the coffee shop safe from prying eyes.

How to Choose the Best VPN for Small Business

When you’re researching VPNs to use with your small business, multiple factors should be considered before making your purchase. When researching VPN providers, consider the following categories.

1

Global Server Coverage

Small business users looking for a VPN provider will want to take a close look at what type of global server coverage the service offers to its users. While most of your business may be centralized in your own geographical area, there may come a day you’ll need international access to customers’ networks or other resources.

The ideal provider will offer a large number of server farms, placed strategically around the globe. This will ensure that you’ll be able to access content and other information that might typically be blocked from access.

The table below has the VPN providers ranked according to the number of countries the service is stationed in, from largest to least.

2

Connection Speed

When considering a VPN for use with your small business, always carefully consider a provider’s connection speeds. In today’s fast-paced world, a speedy connection is essential to any small business, be it a sole proprietorship or a team of 150 employees.

You’ll want a VPN service that provides reliable connections that can keep up with your needs. You might be connecting from home, at a coffee shop or in a hotel room. No matter what, you want your connection to allow fast file transfers, video and audio conferencing, and more.

The VPN providers listed in the table below are ranked according to the speed of their connections, fastest service first. 

3

Privacy

Small business owners value their privacy. When searching for the right VPN provider, always look for a service that offers all-around privacy protection. When I say “privacy,” I am not referring to encryption, or the ability to hide your actual location. While those are important, there is so much more to privacy protection when it comes to small business usage.

When considering a provider, look for one that is located in a privacy-friendly country. Make sure they keep as few activity logs as possible. (No logs at all is my golden standard.) Also, give preference to providers that accept secure, anonymous forms of payment, such as Bitcoin.

I’ve listed the VPN providers below, ranked according to the level of privacy protections they offer, best to worst.

4

Multi-Platform Support

If you’re a small business owner with multiple employees, you may not have had the time or available budget to standardize the devices used by yourself and your employees. This makes multi-platform support an essential consideration for any VPN provider you might be tempted by.

Comprehensive multi-platform support means your company’s devices will have their internet connection protected by a VPN, no matter which platforms you and your people might use.

The VPN providers in the table below are listed in order of the number of device platforms the service supports, from the most platforms to the least.

5​​​​

Simultaneous User Support

If you own a small business, you’re likely watching your expenses. Ways to keep costs down are a welcome bit of knowledge for any business owner. When considering a VPN for use with your small business, take a close look at how many simultaneous users can access a VPN account.

Being able to have 5 of your employees accessing the same VPN account at once is a much better deal than purchasing a VPN subscription for each individual employee. (Routers only count as one VPN connection, yet allow everyone in one location to access the internet via the router’s protected connection. I’ll tell you more about that in the next section.) 

I’ve listed the VPN providers in the table below in the order of how many simultaneous users they allow to use an account, most first.

6​​​​

Router Support

One way to make the best use of a VPN account is to find a provider that supports the use of routers with their service. By taking advantage of your router that is likely already in place, you’ll protect all of the computers and connected devices on your business’ network.

A router connection to a VPN service is usually counted as one connection, leaving multiple connections available for users who are out on the road or are working from home.

The VPN services in the table below have been ranked from best to worst according to how many types of routers they support. I also note whether the provider makes pre-configured routers available through a partnership with FlashRouters.com. A pre-configured router is an excellent way for a new business to hit the ground running when it comes to VPN protection.

Provider

# of Routers Supported

Routers Brands Supported

Pre-Configured Routers Available from FlashRouters

Link

ExpressVPN Logo

5

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

Linksys, Asus, Netgear

check-circle-o
HideMyAss VPN

5

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

Linksys, Asus, Netgear

check-circle-o
IPVanish

5

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

Linksys, Asus, Netgear

check-circle-o
NordVPN Logo

5

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

Linksys, Asus, Netgear

check-circle-o
PrivateInternetAccess Logo

5

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

Linksys, Asus, Netgear

check-circle-o
PureVPN Logo

5

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

Linksys, Asus, Netgear

check-circle-o
VPN Unlimited

5

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

Linksys, Asus, Netgear

check-circle-o
CyberGhost

2

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

check-circle-o
Vypr VPN

2

DD-WRT & Tomato Firmware

check-circle-o
Tunnelbear VPN Logo

0

N/A

N/A

7

Other Factors to Consider

This section contains other factors to consider that may prove valuable to prospective VPN customers before deciding on a VPN subscription.

Price

As I’ve mentioned before, if you’re a small business owner, you’re likely watching your pennies. When it comes to a VPN provider, while you want a service that checks off the most boxes on your feature list, you’ll also want to find a provider that won’t break the bank when it comes to subscription costs.

Note: Many VPN services occasionally offer promotional pricing, which can significantly reduce the cost of a subscription. Plus, if you’re willing to commit to a longer subscription commitment, you can take advantage of even more significant discounts. Visit the website of any provider you’re considering to check their current subscription pricing and offers.

Most providers also offer a month-to-month subscription payment option, which may be a good choice for users who are watching short-term expenses. Be warned that paying month-to-month will increase your long-term costs, as those subscriptions are more expensive overall than an annual subscription.

*The prices in the table reflect the monthly cost when paying for an annual subscription. (Annual Subscription Price / 12 Months.)

Customer Support

Customer support is always an important consideration when researching VPN providers. However, comprehensive support is even more critical when your business and its reputation might be at risk.

Only consider VPN services that provide responsive customer support, accurate information and the ability to help you fix any issues you’re experiencing, whenever and wherever that might happen.

The providers in the table below are ranked best to worst, according to the types of support they offer, how responsive they are and the accuracy of the information they provide.

Note: Phone support is not provided by any of the VPN providers listed below.


Provider

Customer Service

Link

*1

ExpressVPN Logo

*1

NordVPN Logo