VoIP Phone Service: Why Your Business Needs It
Many businesses need a phone service to operate. Customer calls, sales calls, conference calls and other types of calls all rely on a working phone line. However, traditional phone landlines are being challenged by a newer technology: the Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP). A VoIP phone service allows calls to be made through an internet connection instead of a phone line.
With a VoIP phone service, computers, tablets, and mobile devices can all make calls. The services used to power these calls are sometimes referred to as a softphone. Used mainly by small businesses and startups, a VoIP service offers many of the same features as traditional phone services in a cost-effective manner. Large enterprises continue to use complex phone systems because it fits their needs and switching to a VoIP service costs a lot of money and time. VoIP services are used by smaller businesses and startups because they’re more affordable, don’t require an expensive network infrastructure and are much easier to use.
In this post, we’ll discuss how a VoIP phone service works, why you need it, how VoIP compares to traditional phone lines and how to find a VoIP service provider.
VoIP Service Features
VoIP services offer many of the same features as traditional phone services. When researching potential VoIP providers, you want to make sure they offer the following features:
No extra hardware needed
A VoIP service works by using the hardware you already have. You already have computers and mobile devices, so you shouldn’t use a VoIP provider that makes you buy special hardware to use their service. Many VoIP services work with the devices you already have.
Voicemail to text, email, and Slack
VoIP services have innovative features that aren’t readily available with traditional phone systems. This includes voicemail to text. With this feature, any voicemails received are automatically transcribed. The transcriptions and voicemail recording can automatically be texted to your phone number, emailed to you or sent in Slack.
Need to record customer support calls, conference calls, interviews, sales calls or other types of calls? Pick a VoIP service that lets you record phone calls with just one click. Legally recording phone calls is easy with the best VoIP services.
Support for IVR and individual extensions
You can use a VoIP phone service for customer support or give each employee their own extension. Pick a VoIP service that allows you to implement IVR and gives each employee their own extension.
iOS, Android and web apps
A VoIP service needs to be accessible from anywhere. Make sure your VoIP provider has iOS and Android apps available to download. For desktop and laptop users, they can access the VoIP service through their web browsers.
Easy to use
VoIP services are popular because they’re so easy to use. Hired a new employee and need to add a phone number? Just go to your settings and add users as you need to. That’s it. You don’t have to purchase a new phone, set up cables and have your IT team involved. And they won’t have to use their personal phone number for work.
Scales with your business
As your business grows, your VoIP provider should be able to support your growing needs. Make sure to pick a VoIP service that can support the volume of calls your business makes as you grow.
Issues will pop-up while using a VoIP service. Surprisingly, some VoIP services don’t provide phone support to the businesses using their service. If you need immediate support, a VoIP provider with phone support options can help you get up and running in no time.
Admin and Security Features
Managing your business’s phone numbers shouldn’t be a hassle. You’ll need easy to understand analytics that show the number of calls being made, who isn’t using their phone numbers, call times and more. You also need audit logs that show where calls are being made and for general record-keeping purposes.
VoIP vs. Traditional Phone Lines
Are VoIP and traditional phone lines that different from each other? While they offer many of the same features, there are a few significant differences between VoIP services and traditional phone lines. Traditional phones are used by large enterprises. Enterprises need dedicated phone lines and technology that support a large amount of incoming and outgoing calls.
VoIP services work better for small businesses and startups because they offer many of the same features as traditional phone lines, but are much more cost-effective. They’re also better suited for remote teams.
Let’s look at the differences between VoIP and traditional phone lines:
VoIP phone services offer many features available with traditional phones. With a VoIP service, you can manage your entire phone system from one location and don’t need to involve your IT team or a phone provider’s service teams.
VoIP phones also offer features that traditional phones don’t have. Some VoIP services integrate with other apps that your business is already using including CRMs, email, and Slack.
VoIP services are much cheaper than traditional phones. With traditional phones, you need dedicated phone lines in your office, specialty hardware, and phone cables running in your office location.
VoIP phones work with your existing hardware. The computers and mobile devices your employees already have means you won’t need to buy any new hardware. VoIP service providers also have lower monthly costs. Many VoIP providers begin at $10 per user per month which most businesses can afford.
Remote work support
Remote work is becoming the norm for small businesses and startups. With a VoIP phone service, you can easily manage your employees’ phone numbers even if they’re spread throughout the world. VoIP phones are better suited to help your business embrace remote work because they won’t require your employees to set up traditional phone lines at home (which you might have to pay for).
VoIP Service FAQ
While VoIP phone services have been around for a while, there are a few common questions about how VoIP services work. Here are some of the common VoIP questions we’ve seen.
What’s the best VoIP service?
There is no “best” VoIP service. There are many VoIP services out there to choose from that offer the features needed for your business. If you are looking for a leading VoIP service, consider using OpenPhone.
What’s the cheapest VoIP service?
VoIP services are inherently more cost-effective than traditional phone systems. Because you won’t be spending money on hardware or setting up phone systems, VoIP service providers can keep their costs low. Many VoIP service providers have pricing plans that are low as $10/month.
Is there a free VoIP service?
There are some VoIP services that are free. These include Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, Snapchat and more. However, these apps are meant for more personal use and aren’t meant to be used in a professional setting. You wouldn’t call your customers from Facebook Messenger, right?
Some VoIP services have free trial options available so you can test out their service.
Should startups use a VoIP phone service?
Absolutely. As mentioned earlier, having a traditional phone system for your startup can be expensive. When your startup is new, you want to keep costs low, so a VoIP service can help you potentially save hundreds of dollars a month. If you work out of a coworking space or have employees working from home, a VoIP service is often your best method of managing phone numbers.
OpenPhone – a VoIP Service for Small Business and Startups
OpenPhone is a VoIP phone service focused on startups, small businesses, and individuals. With OpenPhone, you can make unlimited calls throughout the world to help support your customers and clients. OpenPhone is available for iOS, Android and web browsers.
Why should you use OpenPhone? We have many required features for business phone systems including:
- Dedicated customer support
- Toll-free numbers
- Works in the US and internationally
- Crystal-clear audio quality
- Can set business hours
- Multiple phone numbers tied to one account
Get started with a free trial of OpenPhone today.