A Horncastle firm is backing the Broadband Means Business campaign by registering its support at www.onlincolnshire.org and is urging others to follow suit.
When Crowders first started trading as a nursery 200 years ago, words like ‘Internet’, ‘e-commerce’ and ‘online shopping’ weren’t even close to being invented.
But as the business has branched out through seven generations of the Crowder family – now boasting a popular garden centre, nursery and online shop – the way the firm has to work has also developed.
The tricky part for the new e-commerce side of the business, crowders.co.uk, is keeping the site updated despite the problem of slow Internet speeds.
Mike Frecklington, E-Commerce Manager at crowders.co.uk, said the service on the Boston Road Industrial Estate is very poor compared to just two miles down the road at the firm’s garden centre. “Broadband is vital for our business,” he said. “Our connection is reliable in that it doesn’t drop out of service, but it can be very, very slow. We’re the e-commerce side of the business so we sell online all the time, and if we can’t upload pictures and update our site easily, it can be very frustrating.
“When we moved to the industrial estate we wanted to get IP phones installed but when BT came out to fit them, we didn’t have enough broadband capacity to make them work properly – so we’ve only got one phone.”
The Broadband Means Business campaign aims to give local companies a chance to compete with those which do have access to faster broadband speeds. The initiative aims to bring broadband to 90 per cent of county premises by 2015.