Investing in a VoIP phone service for your small business will offer a range of long-term benefits, whether it’s robust internal and external communications, improved productivity across the organization, increased scalability, more flexibility, advanced reporting capabilities, money savings, business-grade security, and more.
What’s great about VoIP phone services is that they offer a wide variety of advanced features for improving business communications, which you won’t get on traditional landlines or mobile phones. These include telephone extensions, call forwarding, call routing, call recording, call holding, call transferring, call queues, auto attendants, conferencing, call screening, call monitoring, call parking, caller ID, business hours, voicemails, analytics, music on hold, and many others.
If you’re looking for a small business VoIP phone service and have already done some research into the best VoIP providers, you’ll know that there are plenty of options available on the market today. But while being spoilt for choice is often a good thing, this can make it difficult to choose the right service for your business.
So, how do you actually choose a small business VoIP phone service that suits your requirements and budget? There are many steps you can and should take, such as considering the features you need, comparing different providers, signing up for free trials, reading reviews and customer testimonials, only choosing a reputable service, and more. Below, we’ve detailed several steps that’ll help you select the best VoIP phone service for your small business in 2021.
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1. Consider the features you need
When it comes to choosing a VoIP phone service for your small business, one of the most important things to consider is the features you need and whether the service in question offers these. The worst thing you’ll want to do is sign up for a VoIP provider and find out that it’s missing features your business requires. While certain features may come as standard on every subscription offered by a provider, many others might be add-ons. It’s important to know what you’ll be getting with a plan before signing up.
2. Compare different providers
Once you have a better understanding of what you want to get out of a small business VoIP phone service, it’s worth writing down your requirements on a piece of paper or a Word document. This list can include different VoIP features, prices, employee and business needs, and any other information relevant to choosing a small business VoIP phone service.
By creating a list of requirements, you’ll find it a lot easier to compare different services and choose the right one for your business. Comparing providers is very important because you don’t want to rush your decision and end up choosing the wrong phone service for your business. Plus, you could end up saving money by shopping around.
3. Check the provider’s security and privacy
Given that VoIP phone services run on the internet, there are important security and privacy considerations to take into account when choosing a provider. If you select a VoIP phone service that has a poor security and privacy track record, your business communications data could potentially be breached by cybercriminals.
The best VoIP phone systems for businesses take the security and privacy of their users very seriously. When searching for an internet-based business phone system, you should ensure it offers features such as end-to-end encryption, strict privacy policies, multi-factor authentication, secure protocols, and more.
4. Sign up for a free trial
If you’ve never used a VoIP phone service before, you might find choosing one for your small business pretty daunting. Unfortunately, it’s really easy to sign up for a service and learn that it’s unsuitable for your business later down the line. But a great way to ensure a system suits the needs of your entire business is by signing up for a free trial. That way, you can see how a system actually works, try out all its features, and make sure if it’s the right fit for your business without parting with your cash.
Hopefully, you’ll like the service and won’t need to go back to the drawing board. But if things don’t go well, you’ll be able to cancel the free trial and won’t waste any money in the process. Of course, not every VoIP provider will offer a free trial. However, they might provide other options that make it possible to try before you buy, such as a free demo or a money-back guarantee. Either way, we’d highly recommend checking if a service offers a free trial.
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5. See what other people are saying about services
Another way to ensure you select the most suitable VoIP phone service for your small business is by seeing what other people have to say about different providers available on the market. You can do this by reading reviews, customer testimonials, and other online content. This will give you a better understanding of the pros and cons of different providers.
6. Ensure the provider offers great customer support
If you sign up for a VoIP provider that offers lots of amazing features but has poor customer support, you’ll soon grow frustrated and question the whole point of choosing this provider in the first place. Whether you have a query about billing, want to flag an issue affecting your business phone system, or need help training staff on a new system, you’ll struggle to find the right answers if your VoIP provider fails in the customer service department.
So, how can you work out if a provider has high-quality customer support? Well, you should be able to learn whether or not a provider offers great customer support by reading customer testimonials. Customers who have experienced poor support from companies will often take to the internet to rant. But it’s also worth heading to the provider’s website to see if they offer a dedicated help page, live chat, a customer phone line, an email address, and other customer support facilities.
7. Select a reputable service
There are many B2B VoIP services available nowadays, but sadly, not every provider is what it seems. Some providers charge sky-high prices in return for very little functionality, are difficult to use, put user privacy at risk, and cause many other issues.
To get the most out of a business-grade VoIP service, we’d recommend choosing a reputable and top-rated provider. We’ve already ranked the best VoIP services of 2021, which include RingCentral Office, Ooma Office, GoToConnect, DialPad, AT&T Business, and many other highly trusted providers.
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