5 Reasons Small Businesses Should Consider VoIP
Before we get started, you should know that small business VoIP is a booming VoIP market. VoIP providers like Vonage Business Solutions and RingCentral go out of their way to market VoIP plans to small businesses.
VoIP providers focus on small business because it represents a high profit margin and a big market for them. Small businesses should pursue VoIP because it can help them save money and use a variety of work-saving devices to increase their business's efficiency.
Small Business VoIP should be a win-win. Use the table above to compare offers and get the best deal on small business VoIP. (Or you can get a quote).
Here are our top 5 reasons why you should get get VoIP service for your small business. This list includes features that small businesses might want from VoIP service, pricing details, and details on contracts options when it comes to VoIP for small business.
1. VoIP service features: great for Small Business
Many VoIP service providers offer features with their calling plans. These features are powerful tools for small businesses when it comes projecting a professional image to customers. Most small business VoIP service plans include the following:
- Auto attendant: A virtual receptionist will automatically transfer callers to the proper extension (you also never have another busy signal).
- Extensions: Assign employees and departments extensions from the business's main phone number
- Voicemail: Callers can leave a voice message if someone can't take their call
- 3-way Calling: Talk to two people at once. Some VoIP providers offer conference calling, which increases the number of people you can talk to at the same time
Most VoIP plans offer these 4 features — for free — with their VoIP service. Other more advanced features, such as
, may also be included; the amount of free, included features also varies from provider to provider.
Learn about all the possible VoIP features for your small business.
2. Flexible Plans: Unlimited Minutes or Metered Minutes
VoIP service providers offer flexible calling plans around the small business's expected usage.
Metered Small Business VoIP Plans
Metered Plans provide you a certain number of minutes per month for a set fee, with additional minutes costing a small amount per month: for instance, you might pay $20 a month for 1000 minutes and then 2 cents a minute for each minute after 1000.
Additionally, metered plans usually offer free inbound calling; you use your minutes when you call out. With some metered plans, you pool your minutes between phones. So, if you had 10 phones with 500 minutes each, your entire office could place 5,000 outbound calls. Jive is a great example of a VoIP provider that offers a pooled metered plan.
Usually, metered plans offer fewer features when compared to an unlimited plan.
Unlimited Small Business VoIP Plans
An unlimited plan offers unlimited inbound and outbound calling. It will also cost more than a metered plan.
An unlimited plan for small business may also offer a number of toll-free minutes a month or a certain number of faxes a month.
VoIP providers tend to push promotions, like free IP phones or a few months free, with their unlimited small business VoIP plans.
Most of the promotions for small business VoIP are contract-based: if you want that lower price or that free phone, you may have to sign a contract. Usually, you don't have to sign a contract in order to receive VoIP service, but you probably won't get the discount.
3. Hosted VoIP For Small Business
Many VoIP providers offer small businesses hosted VoIP plans. These hosted plans alleviate the cost of an expensive phone system so small business can a phone system.
With Hosted PBX plans, the VoIP provider manages the IP PBX phone system off-site while offering the customer the PBX services (PBX stands for Private Branch Exchange). Hosted VoIP gives small businesses a:
- PBX without hardware investment
- Phone System without a full-time technician
With hosted VoIP, you will need to pay per user/ per phone for your phone system (if you have five people at your office, for instance, but only three need phones at their desk, you can get away with just three phones).
4. Money-back guarantees
Most VoIP providers offer some kind of 30-day guarantee when it comes to trying their VoIP service. If you don't like it, you'll get your money back.
We try to make it clear how to obtain your money back if you need it, here and elsewhere on the site; make sure you check with the VoIP provider's terms and conditions before you sign.
5. Competition in the VoIP Market
The increased competition among VoIP service providers, as well as aggressive marketing to SOHO customers, is only a good thing for small businesses looking for an affordable VoIP solution. This increased competition has caused prices to drop considerably.
The number of perks and features included with a plan have also increased (or been made free). Providers often offer free ATA adapters to small businesses who sign up for their VoIP plans.
SOHO in the VoIP Industry
The increased competition and recognition of how important small business and home business customers are in the telecommunications industry has made VoIP very affordable. Expensive business phone systems are no longer required to get the features of a professional company.
With the costs and features of a professional phone system now available to a wider audience, it has never been a better time to consider VoIP for small business.