There are over 30 million small businesses flooding the US marketplace. Many of those businesses are fighting for the same customers in the same niche.
Do you know what’s going to be one of the main things that separate winners from losers amongst all that competition?
The better a business can communicate, the better it can streamline products, make buyers happy, and boost sales.
When it comes to communication, there is no tool that’s more important to you than a quality business phone system. If you’re in the market for a business phone system now, you’re in the right place.
In this article, we’re going to go over the main things to look for in a quality setup. That way, you can be sure you end up hitching your wagon to the right phone provider.
1. Landline or Internet-Based
The core question surrounding business phone systems today is the kind of technology you’d like to trust to manage all your incoming and outgoing calls.
On the one hand, there are landlines.
Landlines have been around since the 1800s and rely on copper wire to connect calls. Landlines are reliable and are easy to get set up with since most cable companies sell some variation of a landline phone package.
The new kid on the block when it comes to phones are internet-based phone systems.
Hosted phone systems that live in the cloud aim to take business’ phone experience to the next level.
If you already have an internet connection, you can get set up with an internet phone provider in minutes. Since the world wide web is powering your phone calls, you’ll get access to all kinds of unique features (some of which we’ll discuss in a moment).
What good is a phone system if it’s not reliable? The answer to that question is not very good at all.
After all, a single missed call or a dropped conversation could cost you a massive sale.
To ensure that your business phone system is reliable, only do business with companies that are reputable. We’re not only talking about reputable in the way of brand awareness.
We’re talking reputable in the way of having positive reviews that you can reference online.
Both landlines and internet-based phone systems have the ability to connect calls reliably. We will say though that landlines do have a slight advantage over internet calling on this front as of today.
Today you may need four phone lines. Tomorrow, you might need double that.
That’s why we recommend buying into a business phone system that can scale as quickly as you can.
No matter which phone systems provider you pick, they’ll happily sell you more lines. The speed in which they’re able to get you set-up with those lines is what sets providers (and the technologies that they use) apart.
Internet-based phone systems have an advantage when it comes to scalability because they can add additional lines to your account instantly. Also, internet systems have mobile phone applications that can let you access your desk phone while on the road.
4. Ease of Use
Your company has enough to worry about without having to worry about how to use your phone. With that in mind, pick a phone system that’s plug-and-play.
Traditional landlines are the obvious winner when it comes to this factor because they’re limited in their functionality. There are a number of internet-based phone companies that offer streamlined services though, so don’t predispose yourself to think that internet business phones are too complicated to integrate into your workflow.
What do you do with our business phone?
Do you only talk internally? Do you take customer calls? Do you cold call leads?
Understanding what your purpose is can add clarity to what kind of phone features you need and which kinds of features you don’t.
For example, some internet-based phones allow you to record calls and log a prospect’s demographic data into your company’s internal database just by calling them. Those are valuable features if you’re in sales.
If you’re not doing much in the way of customer outreach though, paying for features like that isn’t worth the expense.
You work hard for your money and when you give it away, you expect the people that receive it to be grateful. One of the ways businesses show their graciousness is in the way they handle customer support.
Cable companies that sell landlines are notorious for having cut-rate customer service. Many internet-based phone companies are equally guilty of that sin.
Bottom line – Customer service matters when it comes to your communications provider. Do what you can to find a provider that’s going to care for your needs.
No conversation about business phone systems is complete without discussing price. As with anything you’re buying for your business, you want the best result at the lowest possible cost.
In our experience, given the rampant competition that exists in the internet-based phone space, you’ll find a better deal on phone service going that route than you would by paying a cable provider for a landline.
Furthermore, internet-based phone services aren’t as tricky as landline providers. Most don’t have expiring promotional rates that can double the size of your bill.
Our Final Thoughts on Choosing the Best Business Phone System
Choosing the best business phone system comes down to finding a provider that has the technology and features you want.
We hope that our list of things to look for above has added clarity to your business phone system search. We wish you the best in finding the perfect provider for your unique needs!
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