The amount of money that people and businesses are spending on landlines has decreased by 30% since the year 2007. That number continues to plummet as new technologies pave the way for cheaper and more convenient phone options.
If you’re a business owner looking to install landlines in your office space, our recommendation is that you ditch traditional copper-wire based services that your cable company sells and instead opt for something more scalable, affordable and modern.
That something is VOIP services.
VOIP stands for voice over internet protocol and what it does is it leverages the internet to enable your phone calls which give users a whole suite of advantages.
Below, we outline a handful of features that you should look for in the best VOIP providers, and we also give a few recommendations on popular providers that are currently selling their services.
What to Look for in a VOIP Service Provider
As VOIP becomes more popular among business and residential customers, we’re seeing more VOIP service providers hit the market.
Unfortunately, though, not all of those service providers are created equal. Some of them are definitely not worth your time or your money.
To discern a good provider from a bad one, below, we step you through key features to keep in eye on that can affect your service.
As with all business services, one of the first things that you’ll want to compare when hiring a VOIP service provider is the rates that they’re charging.
Given the amount of competition that exists in the VOIP market, you’re going to find that prices are much better than you’d typically see with traditional landline services. While who’s offering the lowest price shouldn’t be the only factor that helps to formulate your decision on who to work with, don’t be afraid to cash in on a good deal.
Today’s internet gives customers unprecedented tools for figuring out which companies are good and which ones are bad. Look no further than Google Reviews or YELP to make that determination.
Before you bring anybody on as your dedicated VOIP provider, vet their online reviews and make sure that they haven’t been burning customers. Armed with that insight, you’ll be able to make a much better-informed decision.
If your phone isn’t working smoothly, your business probably won’t be either. To ensure that you’ve always got somewhere to go when you bump into snags, a good customer service team is key.
Customer service should be quick to answer, responsive to your concerns and should be willing to help you learn the basics of VOIP, SIP trunking and related concepts.
Any customer service team that seems dismissive when trying to earn your business will be 10x more dismissive once they actually have it. Trust your gut and walk away from bad service teams.
Given that the internet is the technology that backs the best VOIP providers, VOIP users have access to many data that they can’t get through traditional landlines.
Internet-based phones can automatically build customer profiles. They pull analytics from a call’s length and outcome and can do several other things that can make your business’ ability to make successful sales/customer service calls.
See which features your VOIP service provider offers and determine if they’re feature-rich enough for your purposes. If they’re not, keep looking.
Speed of Installation
The beauty of VOIP is that activating it should be as easy as filling out a quick form online and making a quick phone call. Once activated, you should be able to use your preexisting computer-compatible microphones to start leveraging your services immediately.
Some VOIP providers out there though will lag this process.
They’ll make it so you can only use your services with their dedicated headsets which will take weeks to ship out. They’ll also make you wait for 5 to 7 business days for them to process your order.
Those providers are best avoided.
Who Should You Buy Your VOIP Services From
Now that you know the basics of what makes up the best VOIP service providers let’s dive into some specific service recommendations.
To be clear, we always hesitate to push certain brands because everybody’s experiences with providers differ.
Use our recommendations as a way to shape your VOIP search. Apply the tips that we’ve given you above to make sure that the company that sounds best to you can give you the level of service you deserve.
This VOIP services provider is one of the most popular on the planet. Their large customer base enables them to roll out new features faster than smaller VOIP companies. Also, their customer service team is lauded.
Grasshopper is a business-focused VOIP provider. It has a customer service team that’s dedicated to providing support on nearly a continuous basis.
Commercial buyers should make grasshopper one of the first platforms that they review.
You may have seen Ooma advertise on television, given that they are the most bullish when it comes to marketing. Don’t let their marketing budget make you feel like they’re compensating for something, though.
Ooma is one of the best VOIP services that holds its own beautifully among a very competitive field.
Wrapping Up the Best VOIP Providers and How to Find the Right One
VOIP phone services are the way that the communications industry is heading. Hiring the best VOIP provider to help you take advantage of this technological-forward way to talk is the optimal way to experience the revolution.
We hope that we could provide you with helpful insight on VOIP and welcome you to browse more of our content if you’d like to learn more!