The Best Cloud VoIP Solution for Small Business

by Mar 14, 2019CLOUD COMMUNICATIONS1 comment

The Best Cloud VoIP Solution for Small Business

It is no secret that most businesses are foregoing the traditional mode of communication, which is the traditional phone lines. Instead, they are now switching to other feasible mediums such as PBX phone systems. These are much cheaper and hassle-free compared to the traditional phone systems that have been in use for generations which is cloud VoIP solution.

PBX stands for Private Branch Exchange and enables a communication system in the workplace with the use of internet technology.  Users, as in the employees and employers, can communicate with each other by using the internet which is their main medium of communication.

PBX phone systems have evolved and became better over the years. There are now many versions of it such as cloud-based business phone system, cloud VoIP solution system, internet protocol PBX and legacy PBX.

This article will emphasize particularly on the cloud VoIP solution system. The VoIP system that we speak of has many benefits in store. It is suitable for both large and small businesses in meeting their needs. Before going further, let us clear our concepts of the terms used here.

Definition of VoIP

VoIP is the acronym of “voice over internet protocol”. It is a form of the advanced PBX phone system and is also referred to as IP telephony. In a more conversational language, the phrase “phone service over the internet” is used. With the latest VoIP technology, you can communicate using the internet.

For example, it is like calling your cousin who lives abroad by using Viber- yes it is that easy! The difference is this only lets you communicate within the workplace and call externally for business purposes only. The cloud VoIP solution phone network is a wireless and seamless form of communication.

It is not necessary for the receiver on the other end to also be a VoIP user. The recipient can either be an ordinary landline user or another VoIP network user. It can also be a desktop computer user and can answer calls using a headset.

Definition of Cloud VoIP Solution

Knowing about cloud VoIP solution phone systems will help you understand cloud VoIP better. In the simplest terms, a cloud VoIP is a business telephone platform hosted by a third party. The third party is essentially your internet service provider or local ISP. The data is stored and transmitted via a cloud system. Cloud technology makes it possible to access the data and services of your cloud from any device given that there is an internet connection.

In a cloud-based business phone system, there is no hardware required as all communication takes place through the means of internet. This is the most advanced version of a PBX phone system that has come up in recent years. It meets the needs and requirements of big and small firms alike.

Cloud VoIP is a distributed VoIP server cluster. It does not run on one single server or one single cluster, rather it runs on the entire cloud infrastructure. Furthermore, every single component can be run on a different server. Therefore, it improves high availability and disaster recovery.

Why should small businesses invest in cloud VoIP?

Cloud VoIP provides many benefits to all sizes of firms. It is specifically beneficial to small firms for many reasons. Although there are several benefits to enjoy, they do come with a cost. Even though a cloud VoIP solution system is essential in the long run, it does have short term costs and complicated procedures.

So, having your own VoIP system and subscribing to one makes the world of a difference. Nowadays, even maintaining software on a server is not required, because you can purchase it from certain providers on a monthly basis.

If you want to obtain your own VoIP system, then you will have to incur certain unavoidable costs. One of the main cost is purchasing SIP trunking service or PRIs in order to connect the phone system to the Public Switched Telephone Network. Other necessary costs include maintenance, security measures, and custom configuration. These are a few initial costs that you will have to pay for.

There are now separate companies who provide these systems on a subscription basis. This new method is much easier and cheaper compared to purchasing your own. A lot of initial costs are avoided and many more benefits come along with it! We will go by the reasons for subscribing to a VoIP network rather than purchasing it, one by one:

Easy Establishment

In a competitive business environment, it is very tough to become established and well known. Often times, many small enterprises do not even cross the survival stage. Although work is done by delegation and division, giving the responsibility of communication to a cloud VoIP solution firm will save the firm a ton of workload. This way you can just focus on establishing your own business and let professionals do the IT communications work.

Saves Time

Communication in business is one of its pillars. Effective communication is essential for the success of a business. By letting a reputed company do it, you can save yourself the time and effort of regular maintenance. The time saved can be spent on other productive activities such as training staff or holding business meetings. Small business can just subscribe as business phone service, and let the experts deal with technical details.

Reduced Costs

Previously, firms used the traditional phone system. Then, VoIP based phone systems came into the scene in the mid-90s. Companies then realized that, by using a VoIP system, they could do the same tasks with much fewer costs. From then on, they shifted and this proved to be highly advantageous for small enterprises and communication costs were substantially reduced.

Furthermore, by subscribing to a VoIP service provider, you only have to pay a monthly subscription fee and let them take care of the rest. There are no added technical and maintenance fees attached.

Improved Functionality

Using cloud-based VoIP networks contributes to the enhancement of functionality. It greatly helps improve your business communication system. With this, you can get the benefits of a web phone that you can log into from anywhere.

Some providers also provide features such as integration with your CRM for automated logging, or a click-to-call app with which you can call just by a click. Based on the needs of your business, you can choose the best VoIP network, provider. This will give your business communication system a favorable boost.

Optimum Security

You might be having security concerns with sharing a phone line with a third party. Rest assured because cloud VoIP solution phone systems actually upscale your security status. If you are able to choose the right firm to purchase this system, they will take full responsibility to keep your calls and account security. Your security is their responsibility.

Additionally, the firm’s reputation depends on it as well. Your negative review will cause them to lose customers. Therefore, it contributes to one more reason why they will ensure optimum security for you and them.

Scalability

Once you start your own business as a small enterprise, you will want it to grow bigger with time. You should also plan your business functions with this in mind. Your business communication infrastructure should have the scope of scalability. Once you buy a cloud VoIP system, it may be difficult for you to shift as your business grows.

Most subscribed networks readily offer the option for scalability. If they do not then you can simply end the subscription and switch to a provider suiting your needs and growth.

Ease of Use

Subscribed versions of VoIP providers are easier to use compared to purchased ones. You may have to spend a good amount of time learning how to operate a cloud-based VoIP after purchasing one. Here, you will receive one readily installed. They also come with an administrative portal that is customizable. You can make changes the way you want it to operate with only a few clicks. If you face any further problem, then you can just call the provider. This is easier than calling IT technicians or handling by yourself.

Remote Working

A subscribed cloud VoIP solution system will let your firm support its remote workers. Often with an in-house PBX system, the reach of people is limited to some areas or the building itself. However, the solution to this problem came with the introduction of a subscription cloud-based VoIP solution. Thousands of employees can now work remotely from home, thanks to cloud-based VoIP networks. As the service is hosted on the internet, it makes it possible for remote employees to register their phones from anywhere.

Reliability

A VoIP cloud system provides reliable service. As it works via the internet, there is no shutdown time. A matter of concern is failovers. VoIP cloud systems also have a solution to that. As for disaster recovery, the failover systems in the cloud are under observation all the time. If there is a disastrous hardware or software failure, PSTN traffic redirects within seconds.

This provides a consistent and reliable service all the time. A professional VoIP service firm is able to do it better than the technicians in an organization are.

How to choose the best cloud VoIP solutions for small businesses?

Now that you are clear that subscribed cloud VoIP networks are more suitable than purchased ones for small firms. You need to assess and evaluate a few things before jumping into conclusions about which one to subscribe. There are many available on the internet with attractive offers. Not all of them are fit for your business purposes.

Before going on to subscribe to a particular company, this is a basic checklist you should follow. Make sure your service provider ticks all these requirements.

Price

The price must be justified compared with benefits. Compare different prices for different providers and decide which is one is most feasible for you. Also, know what additional costs, taxes and fees are associated.

Trial Options

Before buying a car, it is always safe to test drive. Similarly, before subscribing to a VoIP provider, check if they provide trial usage. With the trial, you can understand within a week if you want to make a purchase from them. If you feel otherwise you can just switch.

Contract

Some cloud-based VoIP providers ask for a contract. For example, you cannot end subscription within 6 months of purchase. Beware of such contracts! If it does not suit your firm, then you will not be able to unsubscribe.

Quality of Call

The main purpose of this subscription system is to make calls at cheap prices. If this criterion is not met, there is no point in subscribing. So, make sure the quality of call is top notch and clear. By purchasing cheap ones with lower costs, you may compromise with the call quality. In essence, you may have to pay a higher price later.

Customer Support

This is a very important feature, which must be present. You are relying on the service provider for the entire basis of your communication. For any glitches or problem, they should be readily available. Try to get one that provides a 24/7 customer support service. It will affect your business procedures if they are not available when the need arises.  

Advanced Features

When you are subscribing for a service, make sure it has advanced features. Make price and feature comparisons among many. These features may include CRM integration and auto attendant. CRM integration helps to manage customer relationship platforms. The auto attendant has the ability to automatically receive, greet and route calls to the respective departments. This will ensure you do not miss any calls.

Call Management

Different providers have different call management options. The fundamental management tools that must be present are call transfer, hold, screening, and park.

Conclusion

This is just a guide to follow. Keep in mind that what may be suitable for others does not have to be necessarily good for you. Do your research, and find out the most apposite option for your business. Based on these qualities, you can assess and evaluate the best could VoIP solution service that will cater to your needs. 

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