Fundamentally, VoIP converts traditional phone calls into digital data, which is delivered through the Internet. To make it simple, VoIP is about using your data network to make phone calls. VoIP has not only become popular, but technology has made it very reliable too. There are three main advantages that VoIP phone systems will bring to an SMB – lower costs, unified communications, and productivity:
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Lower Costs – All businesses have an Internet connection and those that haven’t converted to VoIP also pay for phone lines separately. With a VoIP system, businesses can eliminate the traditional phone line and condense onto one network. VoIP services typically offer unlimited minutes and cheap long-distance rates. The reduced costs of VoIP communications save money especially if long distance calls are the norm. A huge benefit also exists for businesses with multiple locations as the long distance charges for calling between locations are eliminated.
Unified Communications – Unified Communications is, according to UCStrategies, communications strategies integrated to optimize business processes. It’s the ability to integrate your VoIP phone service with other communication tools such as instant messaging, email, conferencing, and other business applications including your CRM. For example, with unified communications you can have voicemail messages emailed to you directly. Gone are the days of repeatedly calling into the office to see if messages are waiting.
Productivity – Your VoIP phone system can be used on your mobile phones and other “smart” technologies. As long as you have an Internet connection, you can use your VoIP application or service wherever. This is a huge benefit to business travelers and employees who are assigned to the field. With the accessibility and flexibility that VoIP offers, these road warriors can get in touch with customers faster and easier. What makes VoIP more convenient is that you also get advanced features when you set it up. As a result, there are more opportunities to make connections and create sales. VoIP will help you respond promptly to business partners, customers and employees, thereby avoiding any communication delays. Most VoIP features include caller ID, voicemail, call waiting, three-way calling, call forwarding, and many more (see Unified Communications).
Your telecom costs are likely a significant line item within your budget. Coincidentally, this line item is prime for cost reduction and improved productivity. The costs associated with VoIP keep getting lower and the service continuously improves. There are dozens of VoIP providers to choose from. VOIP offer SMBs lower telecom costs, more productivity, and a chance to take customer service to the next level.
The important thing in “Switching to VoIP” is to seek out a channel partner who can provide the guidance, support and consultation for proper integration. A partner such as this lives in the business and is solution-agnostic with no bias toward one vendor or another. They can properly determine your requirements and design your system based on business objectives. Your partner will understand the vendor landscape and can help you select the appropriate technologies, putting into place suitable contracts at the best price. Most SMBs don’t have telecom-dedicated IT resources. That’s why the proper partner will also deliver and deploy your solutions, train users, and provide ongoing service and support.
For a partner like this, call ATC at (513) 299-1177, or make an online inquiry here.