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Americans Are Less Likely To Go to a Business if It Doesn’t Offer Fast, Free Wi-Fi

How often do you look for free Wi-Fi when entering a business? For many Americans, it’s at the top of their list—they want to connect and get online while browsing aisles, sipping coffee, or eating dinner. But too many businesses don’t offer free Wi-Fi or have speeds that are too slow for the modern American.

Almost half of Americans say they'd be less likely to go to a business if it didn't offer free wi-fi.

Unfortunately, this problem can impact business reviews and turn people away before they even make a purchase. And if you don’t know how fast your business’s internet speeds are, that makes it even harder for you to compete.

Don’t take our word for it, though. We surveyed 1,000 Americans about the Wi-Fi they want from their favorite businesses.

Download the HighSpeedInternet Speed Test app

The HighSpeedInternet Speed Test app allows you to check speeds from anywhere in your store. After your speed test, you can apply for a HighSpeedInternet badge to proudly display and show your business has certified fast internet speeds.

Americans want fast Wi-Fi at coffee shops, restaurants, and bars

Fast, free Wi-Fi is vital for most Americans. In fact, 60% of our respondents said that coffee shops and cafes need to provide fast Wi-Fi for visitors. If not, they’d turn around and find another place to grab a drink.

It makes sense that coffee shops and cafes would offer Wi-Fi for customers, many of whom stick around and work online for most of the day. What was surprising was that half of Americans want fast Wi-Fi in restaurants and bars too.

One in three Americans go to a business for the Wi-Fi

Over a third of Americans go to a business not to make a purchase but to use its Wi-Fi. And it’s not a one-time thing—respondents said they go at least several times throughout the year.

  • Among all of our respondents, more than half use the internet for personal tasks.

How important is free Wi-Fi to Americans? Well, if your business doesn’t offer it, you may lose half of your customer base. It’s true—nearly half of Americans say they wouldn’t go to a business if it didn’t offer free Wi-Fi.

39% of Americans would not go back to a business with slow Wi-Fi

Slow Wi-Fi may be a pain for most people in the comfort of their own homes, but out in the wild, it’s a deal-breaker. According to our survey, 39% of consumers would not return to a business with slow Wi-Fi.

  • 25% said they would only go back if the internet speed had improved

If you want to find the fastest internet providers in your area, check out our rankings.

Nearly one in five Americans have mentioned Wi-Fi in a review for a business

Reviews can make or break a business. And Wi-Fi is a big factor in many customer reviews. Nearly one in five Americans told that they mentioned Wi-Fi in a business review.

  • Among them, 12% left negative reviews.

And if you’re hoping to pick up more customers because of good reviews, you’re in luck. Nearly one-third of respondents look at reviews frequently or almost every time before going to a business.

Read on to learn how your business can qualify for the official badge that tells customers your business has fast and reliable Wi-Fi and is HighSpeedInternet approved.

Speed test app solves your worries

Americans want high-speed internet at their favorite coffee shops, bars, and restaurants. But how can you know if your business offers reliably fast speeds? The Speed Test app from HighSpeedInternet offers a no-cost, ad-free way to check your internet speed in no time.

You’ll be able to see the internet speed you’re receiving and check back to see if the speed slows down during the afternoon rush or stays the same.


Get the badge!

Want to prove to customers that you offer the fastest Wi-Fi in the land? Take the HighSpeedInternet speed test, and, if your Wi-Fi is truly fast, you’ll get a special badge for your business.

How? Simply take a screenshot of your speed test results, send it to, along with your business name, location, and average number of hourly customers, and we will send you your badge.

  • The badge is downloadable and available to put on your website, Google page, and reviews—you can even print it out and tape it to your business’s front door.

As more Americans look for fast Wi-Fi when they go out to eat or work in a coffee shop, you’ll stand out from the crowd with the exclusive badge from

Decide what speed your restaurant or coffee shop needs

We asked our resident internet speed expert, Peter Holslin, what speeds businesses might need. Here’s what he had to say:

“Most businesses need speeds of at least 25Mbps to cover basic tasks like running point-of-sale software and streaming music from a sound system. But you should consider upgrading to a faster speed if you regularly cater to customers who use your Wi-Fi.

“The more customers you have on your Wi-Fi, the more demand it puts on your internet bandwidth. If your speeds aren’t fast enough, customers and employees alike may have to contend with cripplingly slow connections and daily router restarts.

“You don’t need the fastest speeds possible for your business—and ultra-fast internet might not fall within your budget. But you can keep customers happy with a business internet package that delivers a reliable connection during peak hours, such as during the lunch rush or on weeknights when customers hunker down to work or study.”

Number of average hourly customers who use the Wi-FiRecommended speed for your business

Methodology surveyed 1,000 Americans age 18+ in April 2023 using the online survey platform PollFish. The results shown above are post-stratified. Post-stratification weighting method is a way to achieve a distribution equal to that of such known characteristics of the population. In this case, it was applied to age and gender.

If you have questions about the survey, methodology, or this report’s data, you can email them to

Author -

Alex began writing for student newspapers and has managed to turn that into a career. During the COVID-19 pandemic, he wrote about small businesses for Biz2Credit and Before that, he spent time in communications for higher education institutions, created marketing materials for nonprofits, and worked for entertainment companies in Los Angeles. Today, he reports on emerging consumer trends and his work can be seen on,,,, and When he's not writing, Alex watches too much TV, plays guitar, reads and writes fiction, and goes on nature walks.

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