Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Work from Home Tips: How to Get Around a Slow Internet Connection

One of the benefits of working from home is being able to work from just about anywhere—and that's all thanks to the internet, something most work from home employees depend on greatly to get through their workload. But what about those times and situations you won't have the reliable or fast connection you're used to? (Like traveling to rural locations or staying with relatives who have yet to find the need for high-speed internet?) The following tips can help you make the most of a slow internet connection so you don't get slowed down yourself.

Divide and conquer! First, figure out which of your online duties require a heavy bandwidth and a light bandwidth and separate them into those two categories. Some tasks can be done even with a slow connection; however some will require a faster speed. If the majority of your work requires high bandwidth, the most responsible thing to do is either delegate them out to someone else, get them done before you leave or put them on the backburner until you get a better connection. (The first two are a much better idea if you're on a deadline.)

Change browsers. Some browsers are built for speed, so change to one that has options for low speed connections. Opera is a good choice for this. (Opera Turbo to be exact.) So that you won't be sitting there collecting cobwebs as pages upload, disable images, enlarge the cache, disable automatic updates, use fewer extensions, block ads and other Flash content and go with the HTML versions of websites. Otherwise, all you're going to do is eat up your bandwidth waiting for images and other add-ons you really don't need to upload.

Don't traumatize your browser. While it's convenient to blog or type emails from internet-based dashboards when you have high bandwidth, it will be better for you to stay away from those things and instead do your work on Microsoft Word or Notepad and transfer them over. Also, don't open more than one tab if you don't have to.

Opt for mobile sites. Some sites allow you to view a page as a mobile version. When you have the option, take it. It won't have the bells and whistles of a normal webpage but you'll still be able to get to the material you need and it won't suck down your bandwidth.

These tips can be very helpful for staying productive until you get back to civilization-- or find a place or location that offers a better connection, such as a free wi-fi spot. Hotels, coffee shops and fast food joints are good places to look for free wi-fi as well as libraries and airports if you have the option.