How SD-WAN Can Reduce Your Network Costs
Easily connect sites to the Internet for more affordable and flexible bandwidth. Unlike MPLS, SD-WAN uses dual links that can automatically switch to the best path—wireless, 5G, or a direct connection.
Network administrators can centrally program policies that manage traffic based on application requirements using a business-driven SD-WAN. This eliminates the need to change each endpoint, saving time and resources manually.
Enhanced visibility into your network operations lets you reduce the risk of costly problems. This includes predicting potential issues based on network resource usage and extrapolating into the future. That is why it is essential to understand and learn more about SD-WAN.
The benefits of SD-WAN include centralized management, circuit bonding (MPLS and broadband Internet), granular quality of service, simple deployment, WAN optimization, and advanced security capabilities. These features reduce overall operational costs for network managers and IT specialists.
For example, when you use an SD-WAN with application-aware routing, traffic is rerouted locally over a less expensive broadband connection. This eliminates the need to backhaul data over a costly MPLS connection. This can save you significant circuit and telecom fees.
Another way that SD-WAN can lower your networking costs is by enabling you to deploy and change connections at branch offices more quickly and easily. This can help you avoid costly leased line contracts and long-term service agreements. It also reduces reliance on traditional WAN security devices such as VPNs and Secure Web Gateways that must be managed separately. It can also help you cut your WAN infrastructure cost by reducing the number of routers you need to buy and maintain.
Many enterprises are still operating with legacy MPLS WAN connections that are expensive and need more intelligence, reliability, and performance required for their business-critical applications. SD-WAN offers a more cost-efficient alternative, leveraging less-expensive Internet and leased lines to provide secure connectivity for remote sites.
It also enables businesses to reduce backhaul costs by combining multiple WAN service types (leased line, MPLS, broadband, or wireless) into a single logical link that prioritizes real-time business services. This feature, called circuit bonding, saves money while delivering a better experience for business applications and reducing network complexity.
Unlike traditional WANs, most SD-WAN products have a centralized management portal where users can monitor and manage traffic across the enterprise. This centralization of control and management reduces complexity by allowing IT to flex bandwidth at each site based on real-time demand. This flexibility further helps to reduce costs by eliminating redundant and inefficient site-to-site communications that can cause data to lose integrity. In addition, security functions like firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and virtual private networks can be centralized and monitored from a single interface, reducing operational expenses associated with these functions.
Better Bandwidth Efficiency
According to Gartner, 22 percent of a company’s network spending is on data, voice networks, and associated devices. When a managed service is based on best practices and leveraging multiple connection types (MPLS, broadband, and wireless), SD-WAN can lower bandwidth costs.
SD-WAN reduces WAN and IT operating expenses by delivering more reliable, faster applications. It eliminates jittering, chattering, packet loss, and degraded network signals caused by lengthy round trips to and from data centers. It also improves WAN performance by enabling better application prioritization, utilization of available bandwidth, and intelligent traffic paths.
In addition, WAN optimization streamlines remote working and speeds up application recovery to minimize MTTR. This can help you avoid paying for unused backup circuits and ensure your remote team can access the tools they need to be productive. In the long run, this enables you to improve user and customer satisfaction while reducing the cost of your network operations.
When companies grow faster than their current network capacity, it can wreak havoc on productivity and lead to costly operations interruptions. SD-WAN can help companies avoid these problems by allowing them to increase bandwidth on demand without changing the underlying infrastructure.
Centralized control and management also reduce or eliminates the need to manage firewalls and routers individually, which can be expensive for small teams or cost-prohibitive for remote users. Additionally, applying policies and traffic prioritization over various connections (MPLS, broadband Internet, LTE) allows businesses to optimize their networking investments by reducing costs and maximizing performance.
Finally, granular visibility into network traffic and application performance allows for improved response times to any issues that may arise. This improves MTTR and increases operational efficiency and user/customer satisfaction – all of which reduce business costs.
Using SD-WAN with best practices helps reduce network costs in many ways. First, it simplifies the aggregation of multiple, diverse network links, which helps save bandwidth costs. It also helps reduce network complexity and cost by reducing the network routers required. Often this leads to savings in both CAPEX and OPEX. Second, it uses lower-cost Internet connections to deliver network connectivity, which helps save on data transport costs. Finally, it eliminates the need to deploy new hardware at remote sites, which can significantly reduce upfront and ongoing expenses.
For example, traditional MPLS networks require backhauling all internet traffic to headquarters. This can be expensive, especially when dealing with large volumes of web traffic. Using SD-WAN, administrators can configure policies that automatically route data over the ideal path in real-time without backhauling. This can help improve performance and control costs while still ensuring security. For example, an administrator could route all priority application traffic over the high-quality MPLS connection while routing all lower-priority internet data over broadband or LTE (when available). This would provide a high level of performance at a much more cost-efficient rate.