Voice over IP may sound complicated at first, however what it can do for you is well worth taking the plunge. It works by making your telephone calls over the internet rather than using traditional analog phone lines and the benefits for your business could be massive.
I think we can all agree that the main benefit would be saving money. Using a VoIP company for your calls will usually save you a minimum of 30 to 40% on call costs. Due to the nature of the technology VoIP is flexible and allows you to scale up your users when times are busy or seasonal and scale back when you are not. Features that you usually have to pay for, such as Caller ID and IVR Phone Menus, are free on most VoIP provider’s systems which allows you to save even more money to spend on commodities critical to your business.
It’s not only money you can save by switching to VoIP, you could also save customers by being able to tailor your phone systems around customer service.
Advanced call routing systems supported by most VoIP providers will mean that your customer will always get put through to the right department, and if nobody is in that day then you can customise your call routing to let customers know. If you only have 1 or 2 people per department then this feature can really help you out. No more being on hold for 20 minutes could save you a client in the long run!
Another feature which can help a small business is the ability to get a number in any area code. With analog phone lines you are directly restricted in terms of telephone area codes by your location, for example, if you are in Manchester then you will be provisioned an 0161 number. But what if you work for a company whose employees are stretched out across the country, or even continents? VoIP functions in the internet so it doesn’t care about your geographical location which means it can join you all together as one entity that can collectively benefit.
Aside from the great features that come with using VoIP another plus point is the fault and restoration time. With BT, service affecting faults can take weeks and sometimes months to troubleshoot and fix due to their complex nature and physical work required to fix them.
With a VoIP provider all their equipment is on the internet so service affecting faults are less regular and can normally be resolved within a matter of minutes or hours rather than days and weeks (turning your device off and on again also works 99% of the time…).
A further benefit of the provider’s equipment being on the internet is any changes made by them to your account are implemented instantly. Want to finish early for the day? No problem, your provider can switch your routing to go straight to voicemail and even put a message on there for your customers notifying them that you’re not around.
If you use a softphone app you can also get your calls rerouted to your mobile. Softphones are an app you can download onto your mobile so you can use your VoIP account. Very useful if you’re on the move a lot and don’t want to divert your main VoIP number to your mobile as that would incur an outbound call cost.
So to recap, you can save money on call costs and get a tonne of free features along with a more reliable service which is flexible and fits around you. What’s not to like?