Compare the Best VoIP Service Providers
With hundreds of VoIP providers out there, it can be hard to find the right one. Researching every single provider is overwhelming and agonizing. I’m certain that you have better things to do.
So before you begin the daunting task of searching for the best VoIP provider, take a look at the chart below. I am a VoIP user myself, and I have spent countless hours researching the different providers and finding the best quality, most affordable plans.
The VoIP providers that make up my list include the most credible, reliable, and affordable services. I am quite confident that these VoIP providers will not only meet your needs, but they will exceed all your expectations and requirements.
Businesses VoIP differs very much from personal usage. With a business oriented intention, it is important to have something more secure that is capable of handling different situations with better features to cater to different groups of consumers and customers. The VoIP providers below are well known business VoIP providers. They certainly live up to their reputation, and I have no hesitation in recommending them to you.
Best VoIP Providers For Personal Usage
What Makes VoIP Phone Service a Good Choice?
When people think of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) service, their minds often go to Skype, FaceTime, WeChat or some of the other popular VoIP applications. Although these apps use VoIP, there’s much more to it than that. VoIP can be a useful tool for businesses that wish to get rid of their traditional landline phone service and get service through an internet connection instead of a phone company.
As technology improves, VoIP keeps getting less expensive and more reliable, making it an excellent option for businesses that want high-level performance without a hefty price tag. If a business wants a flexible plan that also doesn’t cost as much as traditional phone service, VoIP could fit the bill.
Why Should Business Owners Consider VoIP Phone Service?
VoIP is the future of phone service. Not only does it provide the same level of reliability and call quality as service from a phone company, but it can do so at a lower rate and with a superior range of features. VoIP services are compatible with computers, smartphones, tablets and cordless phones, and rates for international calls tend to be lower than with traditional phone service. There’s also no risk of dropped calls. Business owners have all kinds of options when they set up their VoIP service, as they can have voicemails sent to their email accounts, download a mobile app that allows their smartphones function as office phones and forward calls to any of their devices, including computers or smartphones.
No matter what a business owner needs, they can get it through VoIP service. They can use VoIP for international calling, virtual video meetings and much more. Whether they need to stay in touch with coworkers, employees or clients, it will be a breeze when calling with VoIP.
VoIP Compared to PBX Systems
A private branch exchange (PBX) system is what people would consider a traditional business phone system. PBX systems are analog exchanges, and the physical equipment for the system is in the business’s office to hook up the internal and external phone lines. To their credit, PBX systems are very reliable. However, they are also much more expensive than VoIP service, which uses software and is usually cloud-hosted. VoIP service typically doesn’t require any hardware, which means it doesn’t have hardware installation or maintenance costs for the business owner to worry about.
In terms of reliability, VoIP systems are usually on par with PBX systems, which means they are also very reliable. The difference is that they rely on an internet connection. If a power outage or any other occurrence takes out a business’s internet, it also won’t have VoIP phone service during that time. If a business owner has mobile data, they could still access their VoIP account from a smartphone or tablet. Another option in that situation would be using their phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot and connecting other devices to the hotspot to continue using VoIP.
How to Find the Best VoIP Phone System
There are several factors a business owner needs to consider in choosing a VoIP service plan for their business, which include their type of business, its size, their budget and the calling features they need. A plan’s add-on features can be a major part of the decision-making process. Many VoIP plans have a video conferencing feature, which comes in handy when a business has multiple office locations or when some of its employees work remotely.
The business owner also needs to consider the type of VoIP plan and the available contract options. A business could need a different plan depending on whether it makes or receives more phone calls. When it comes to budget, there are VoIP service providers that offer annual contracts and those that allow month-to-month plans, which tend to have a higher monthly fee. It’s also important to watch for setup fees, early termination fees and any other hidden costs.
Evaluating VoIP Phone Service
Regardless of the business and its needs, the number-one factor any VoIP service must provide is reliability. An inexpensive plan with a host of features won’t make up for poor coverage that prevents the business from making or receiving calls. The good news is that most high-quality VoIP providers have service-level agreements that guarantee a certain quality of service. This assures the business owner that there won’t be service disruptions.
Setup and Accessibility with VoIP Service
With any VoIP plan, one major benefit will be how little setup is required to get service up and running. VoIP phone services are cloud-hosted, and that means it’s someone else handling the required servers and hardware. The business owner only needs to set things up on their end, but they don’t need to worry about maintaining any hardware.
Even though VoIP service tends to be easy to set up, business owners should still look for a provider that keeps installation as hassle-free as possible. Part of this involves seeing what information the provider offers upfront. It’s preferable if the provider offers quotes and rates through its website, instead of requiring business owners to talk to a salesperson first.
Another consideration in regard to setup is equipment. Some providers allow businesses to connect to their networks with just about any VoIP phone, whereas other providers require customers to lease equipment directly from them. It’s important to factor in any equipment leasing costs into a plan’s price.
Applications, Calling Features and Administration with VoIP
There are residential and business VoIP plans available, but business VoIP service is far different because the feature sets are more advanced to meet the needs of businesses. With business VoIP service, callers can be routed to the appropriate person through an automated virtual receptionist that communicates via customized messages.
Business VoIP providers can also help companies that have a high call volume. One potential solution in this instance is virtual call queuing, which provides callers with the option of remaining on hold or receiving a call back when an agent is available. If they choose the call back option, they don’t lose their place in line.
Virtual call queuing isn’t the only queuing option, although it tends to be the most customer-friendly. There is also automatic call distribution (ACD), where incoming calls get sent to available agents in the same order that they’re received. Or there are hunt groups, where calls are routed to certain employees right away. The drawback with that is callers can be on hold far longer, because there is just a handful of employees receiving most of the calls.
When it comes to phone service features, every business is different with what it needs. The top VoIP providers have plans with a variety of features to suit the needs of many businesses. There are the basic plans with call waiting, call transferring, conference calling and a smartphone app. And then there are more advanced plans with a greater number of features that can help certain types of businesses.
Business owners should keep scalability in mind when choosing a VoIP system. Even if the company doesn’t have many employees yet, it could in the future, and it’s important to choose a VoIP service that can accommodate the company’s growth. VoIP services usually have extra lines available, but some will charge for them.
Customer Service and Support
One final factor business owners need to keep in mind when choosing a VoIP service is the provider’s customer support. This includes the provider’s phone, email and live chat support. It’s also beneficial if a provider has a frequently asked questions (FAQs) page with a search function and an online forum, as both can help customers get answers to minor questions.
In evaluating a provider’s customer support, there are a couple factors that determine quality. Response time is very important, as businesses may not have much time to wait around for an answer to their inquiry. Ideally, providers should respond to phone calls and live chat messages within five minutes and emails within 12 hours.
It’s obviously not all about responding quickly. The response needs to be helpful and answer any questions. Many providers are excellent at this, as their representatives are knowledgeable and give high-quality answers. Unfortunately, there are also providers with representatives who push for sales instead of providing help or who lack knowledge and need to transfer customers to other agents as a result.
A money back guarantee is one last helpful piece of support a VoIP provider can offer. The top providers include 30-day money back guarantees, allowing business owners to cancel the service within that time for any reason without fees.
The Final Verdict on VoIP Service
Business owners searching for the best VoIP service likely want to know what provider they should choose. It’s wise for them to evaluate multiple providers and VoIP service plans to see how the features and prices compare. That being said, when it comes to business VoIP service, it’s hard to top RingCentral.
RingCentral offers topnotch business VoIP service, and it’s available for businesses of every size, from small businesses with only a few employees to major corporations with several different office locations. The coverage is as reliable as it gets, which means business owners won’t find themselves unable to call out or having their calls drop after a few minutes. There are over 50 features available through RingCentral, allowing each business owner to build a customized plan that fits their needs and delivers excellent service to their customers.
Business owners are protected by RingCentral’s money back guarantee, and the provider doesn’t require a long-term commitment. Month-to-month contracts are available, giving business owners the option of canceling any time they want.
Besides RingCentral, two other top business VoIP service providers are 8X8 and Jive. 8X8 has versatile plans available that can work for businesses at any size, although certain enterprise features, including call queuing, have an additional fee. Jive has a wide range of features, and its setup process is quick and simple, even compared to other VoIP providers. Jump to top