By combining current technology with scalable systems and unbeatable features, Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) quickly became the preferred choice for business telecommunication. (VoIP) consists of innovative telecom solutions to individual consumers, small businesses, multinational corporations, and even governments. As such, an increasing number of small and medium-sized businesses (SMB’s) are turning to VoIP for their telecommunication needs.
How Does VoIP Work?
VoIP technology takes analog voice traffic and turns it into compact, digitized packets that can be sent over the internet instead of regular phone lines. These packets can take many different paths to reach their final destination. Once there, they are automatically unpacked and converted to clear audio. VoIP is different from standard phone systems, where one call creates a dedicated connection used during the entire conversation. VoIP generates a non-dedicated connection only long enough to send short bursts of information.
VoIP is a powerful technology that allows companies to streamline their communications systems while enjoying lower costs and increased capabilities. Using IP networks to handle voice traffic enables businesses to save large amounts of money on international calls. Digital networks also provide productivity-boosting features that traditional networks are unable to offer.
These include click-to-call, which connects online customers to your sales or customer service staff with the click of a button. Web-based voice mail also includes checks and manages voice messages online. Integrated Conferencing uses real-time communication to collaborate with long-distance business partners as well. Call Routing reduces call center staffing. Lastly, auto-attendant covers larger areas with a smaller workforce by redirecting calls from unattended sites to attended sites.
Why Should an SMB Move to VoIP?
Small businesses don’t think small. Yet, many SMBs have looked at unified communications (UC) – and decided that UC is a solution too big to fit their needs and budget. But times have changed, and more solutions are being tailored to be the right fit for SMBs.
1. Employees want to leave the office yet stay in touch.
Employees don’t necessarily work in the office every day, and we often work from home or on the road. With UC, employees can work from anywhere at any time. Employees want to use their desk phones, softphones on iPads and laptops, mobile phones, and home office phones – and still be reachable via a single number. This flexibility becomes especially important for small business owners who strive for work/life balance and want to control how calls are handled by the time of day.
2. Budgets go further with VoIP.
SMBs do not want to sacrifice communication and collaboration capabilities because they lack a Fortune 1000 company’s deep pockets. SMB’s want all of the UC capabilities that our bigger competitors have — voice and telephony, conferencing, email and messaging, presence and instant messaging, clients, and communications applications.
3. Unparalleled mobility
Employees want to work from any network, cellular or Wi-Fi, clearly and cost-effectively. Many workers rely on smartphones, both in the office and on the road, but we don’t want to be hit with substantial cellular phone bills from providers – or have inadequate in-building coverage. A web-based interface gives organizations a single view into the entire system, even if the company has multiple locations, such as a remote sales office or warehouse.
4. Easy collaboration
With intuitive collaboration tools, employees can easily schedule conference calls, connect other people into active calls, and even turn an audio conference into a web or video conference. Plus, companies can save money by not buying costly third-party conferencing services and on unnecessary business travel. Such savings means more profits to reinvest in the business.
5. Customer satisfaction
When a customer has a question, receptionists and executives alike want to find the right person to answer right away. Companies do not want customers on hold while several numbers are called - only to call the three phone numbers of the five different people who might know the answer – and might be free at that moment. With presence, our employees can share their availability and see the availability of others. We can find the right person – fast.
6. Reliability is paramount
If your phone system goes down, your team can’t make sales. Or serve customers. For SMBs, a UC system built on a distributed architecture ensures 99.9% availability with no single point of failure.
Real-world: a small business decides to upgrade its aging phone system using “Connect”
The right system should be designed to grow with your business. It should scale quickly and handle multi-site companies because it appears as a single, unified system. We recently worked with a small business to implement the “Connect” solution with that in mind. The Connect solution eliminates phone system frustration, so you can focus on sales, customer relationships, ideas, and growing your business. Connect is reliable, flexible, and incredibly adaptable, making it the best choice for this company’s unified communications solution.
Because Connect is a phone, text, mobile, and conference online meeting system making collaboration with teams of all sizes fast and easy. The SMB employed the “next-gen app” that works with:
- Desk phones
- Smartphones Tablets
- Wearable devices
Additional Features from Connect
Enterprise mobility made it easy for employees to connect anywhere with any device on any network. Since phone, email, chat, contacts, and voice messages are stored in one interface, employees reported that the system was “intuitive” and a “real-time saver.” Their new, all-in-one communication systems included features such as:
- One-click conference calling
- Pop-up instant messaging
- Video calling
- Desktop sharing
- Internet faxing
- Call recording
Application integration supercharges your CRM and ERP investments with a 360-degree view of all your sales, marketing, and customer service interactions. Easy integration with solutions like Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, Sugar CRM, ACT!, NetSuite, and many more. And if you handle lots of customer contacts, Connect contact center is an enterprise-grade solution for the SMB environment. Say goodbye to phone system complications and say hello to Connect.
Businesses must carefully evaluate their telecom and operational needs before selecting a VoIP solution. We encourage SMB’s to look for a solution with strong customer service support and a commitment to high voice quality.
If you're looking to replace your old legacy phone system, your current VoIP solution is complicated, expensive, antiquated, or no longer supported; we are here for you. Schedule a meeting today with the Business Communication Specialist team as you begin the discovery process towards a new solution.