It’s no secret that VoIP—Voice Over Internet Protocol—has taken over the business world by storm. Coming with the promise of reduced bills, cost-saving, improvement of employee productivity, and useful additional features, VoIP has soon proved to be one of the tools all business need to have. Whether businesses opt for the on-premise or for the cloud-based features of VoIP systems, they get the same benefits.
However, where the decision to hire a VoIP service provider and to have the VoIP system installed in your offices doesn’t take much, it’s always important to know what you’re getting yourself into. It’s completely fine that your business does not demand much tech-savviness and that you don’t really know your way around new technology, but with a few guidelines and useful tips, you’ll know exactly what to look for when looking for a VoIP service for your business.
You’re probably looking at business-grade VoIP systems since these are the tools most popular with small businesses and entrepreneurial setups. You might be trying to upgrade your existing VoIP service or might be a complete beginner with no idea where to start from; this might be a good place to begin.
Before we begin explaining these tips and detailing these guidelines, remember the first and most important rule of opting for a VoIP system for your business: always do your homework. No matter how great the service provider says they are, you have fewer chances of being conned when you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.
The Plans and Pricing
Of course, the first thing most people look at when they’re trying VoIP is the cost. You should be able to afford it, meaning that it can’t cost you an arm and a leg. Remember that this is supposed to be a service that saves you money monthly and in the long term.
If you have a service that’s truly great, but that begins at $40 a month without the features, you’re looking at the same deal as a conventional phone bill payment. Always think in terms of savings: how much are you going to save monthly, and how much are you going to save on a yearly basis? Also try and find out if the value of the starting package can be minimized if you buy it online.
Some of the great and cost-effective solutions and services include Grasshopper, which begins at only $26 for a month. It’s a service that’s absolutely perfect for small businesses and entrepreneurial enterprises that don’t really deal with a countless barrage of calls—both incoming and outgoing. Bear in mind that the call volume is directly related to how capable your broadband connection is, so on and so forth.
Others, like Ring Central, are cost-effective and heavily feature-laden options for larger companies that must deal with a great number of calls. These work best for companies for whom customer care through call is an essential part of doing business.
The easy way to decide between the many options that you have available, is to:
(a) Compare and contrast, and
(b) To think more about the features and less about the pricing.
On a website like Top5 Business VoIP, which is built exactly for the purpose of helping you compare and contrast, you will be perfectly at leisure to go through the different packages offered by different services.
Moreover, when prioritizing the features your business requires, you are better situated to know where you need to spend and what works best in your interest. It’s comparison shopping at its best, and with something like Top5 Business VoIP at your behest, it’s easier than it ever was.
On the Go Features
When shopping for VoIP service providers, what you really have to do is look at your business more closely and figure out what feature helps your business run more smoothly. In this case, if yours is a business that requires its employees to move about frequently, you’re better off with a VoIP service that provides mobile apps and delivers equally well.
A softphone on a desktop and an app on a mobile will have the same features if you opt for such a VoIP service. You should make sure that the mobile app has the capability to create call logs, voicemail transcripts, and more.
More mature VoIP systems have a full-fledged range of features, most of which can be tagged directly under the umbrella term of Call Management. This includes call queuing, call recording, call forwarding, etc. If yours is a big business with several employees that will require and that can benefit from call management features, make sure the VoIP service provider you’re settling for offers these features.
VoIP systems are software-based, and have built-in integrations for different apps. Let’s take RingCentral, for instance. It has extensions for Google Drive, Dropbox, and more—making your life and business dealings far easier. Since these extensions allow you to customize your workflow, the managing of the work and the running of your business becomes easier and greatly improved.
There’s also the possibility of developing customized integrations, for which you’ll have to search for a service provider that offers APIs. You can either download these or pay some extra money to obtain them. When deciding on how to integrate several services that are cloud-based, depend on REST (Representational State Transfer) like most major businesses do.
Reviews, Ratings, Ranks, and More
Finally, and this goes without saying, always look at past feedback left by customers. When you’re shopping for a VoIP system for your business, no matter how big or small, make sure that you’re reading through reviews and gauging which service will work best for you. Websites like Top5 Business VoIP that specialize particularly in listing VoIP service providers for businesses can be a good way to get this done.
Simply visit the website, and go through the customer feedback for different VoIP service providers to get a good idea. You can also go through the guides and articles available on the website.