Why VoIP Is The Right Solution For Businesses
Since its introduction as a commercial service back in the 1990s, use of VoIP has continually grown. Now, a big portion of new business phone service customers choose VoIP from the start–at least one-third of businesses do, in fact. This grows every year. Why? Because VoIP does a great job of meeting the needs of businesses.
Today’s landlines are still very expensive to install and have a limited amount of quality they offer customers, but VoIP quality continues to improve while costs drive further down. Now, a small business can get a great VoIP phone service system that rivals landline systems in sound quality. VoIP is now better than ever and is an easy-to-use, budget-friendly solution that’s packed with features.
In this article, we’ll make a case for why VoIP is great for businesses, and we’ll introduce some ways you can start using VoIP service at yours.
- What’s VoIP and How’s It Work?
- Why VoIP Is The Right Solution for Businesses
- Using VoIP and Getting Started for Different Needs
Keep reading to discover why so many businesses are turning to VoIP phone service instead of the alternatives.
1. What’s VoIP and How’s It Work?
VoIP uses advanced digital voice codecs to transfer voice data used in a phone call between servers, ultimately delivering the call from one phone to another. This is all done using the Internet instead of specially installed wires or the public switched telephone network (PSTN). Companies using VoIP can do so with relatively little added infrastructure and equipment and can inexpensively deploy a fully-featured phone system that likely rivals traditional phone systems used by large enterprises. This is all done without necessarily hiring an IT staff or investing in expensive upgrades to your building to accommodate a new phone system.
To appreciate why all of this is important, a bit more context may help. In the past, companies needed operators and switchboards to power the calls traveling through their buildings. Special wiring connected these company phone networks into the larger network created by public phone lines. Calls were transferred along landline wiring to their destination. This was an expensive undertaking, even after computer boxes began taking over the functionality of having live operators and switchboards. Live IT personnel were also needed on-site to maintain and install these systems, which could fail or cause problems at any moment and bring the phone system to a screeching halt. With wiring to maintain, upgrades would be regularly needed because the wiring had a physical presence and could deteriorate due to age or environmental conditions. VoIP has made it much more accessible to get a business phone system and win over some of these features and functions without making the same infrastructure investments. Simply put, there was simply so much involved with keeping a business phone system together, that many businesses never had an advanced phone system. Only the larger ones did. But that’s all changed and continues to change.
2. Why VoIP Is The Right Solution For Businesses
Essentially, VoIP is the right solution because it offers so many distinct advantages over other types of systems businesses have available. This is particularly true for smaller businesses or for organizations with a large amount of variance in call demand and use. If the usage of calls drastically changes from day to day, it makes sense to have a phone solution that is flexible and adaptable enough to change with these changes. A private branch exchange (PBX), which can be a dedicated computer system or a cloud-based system, can do all of this automatically in many cases, making it simple to adjust your phone resources quickly.
3. Using VoIP and Getting Started For Different Needs
So, now that we know more about VoIP, let’s talk about some ways to get started for your own business. This will largely depend on what your business needs. In other words, it’s time to see how things like business size and industry could impact your needs for a phone system.
- The Soloprenuer: Say you’re starting your new business and you’re a one-person operation. You can still take advantage of VoIP, and in fact, it’s probably the perfect phone solution for where you are in the business ecosystem right now. It’s quick to set up and relatively cheap. Let’s say you’re looking for two phone lines. You very well could probably get yourself a plan for under $20 a month, and possibly even $50 for an entire year. Now you can have a business phone line and a personal line, and avoid giving out your home phone number to prospects. Or you can have a main phone line with some options and then have these calls go to your second line, or your personal line, to give a more impressive image to prospects, perhaps. Or have a line for an assistant and a personal line you give out occasionally for direct calls.
- The Small Business: Yes, even with only five employees or so, you can set up a contact center-style phone system and have incoming calls routed to the appropriate people. Let’s say you have a small accounting practice with other accountants working with you. You could use VoIP to set up a neat business phone system that routes everything to the right people and has an auto attendant answer the phone for you.
- The Medium-Sized Business: The SMB that’s a bit bigger can set up a variety of different configurations, and take advantage of features such as private branch exchanges (PBX) to handle the call routing. It’s convenient and effective.
- The Large Enterprise: At this point, having an onstie PBX and using multiple VoIP providers can make sense, as you could switch to different providers as needed to take advantage of moment-by-moment pricing based on call volumes and supply and demand. This can save companies that use a lot of phone minutes more money, to be sure.
Depending on where you fit in the spectrum (or somewhere in between), there’s likely a VoIP provider and plan that fits best for you. It may take a little shopping around and comparisons, which is why we organized this site and packed it with information that you can put to use right away for your business and your own decisions about it.
Shopping around for plans is relatively straightforward if you take the time to figure out what you need and look for the best resources to meet those needs. At first, it may seem very daunting or frustrating to try and find the right plans and providers, but in time you’ll begin answering questions for yourself about your own business needs and goals. These answers can help guide your planning and decision-making. Carefully think about ways you can learn more about VoIP and involve decision-makers and phone users from your organization in the process. Be aware of differences between VoIP providers and do your homework to find the one that is right for you. With the great variety available, it’s very likely that several might be ideal for you and then it’s a matter of narrowing down your list. Let us help.