VoIP isn’t new, but it’s becoming a much more dynamic, effective solution for communicating via “phone” than traditional telephone lines. This is a great tool to create virtual trails of communication and track interactions digitally so that you can keep tabs on your business. It’s also a lot more affordable than the good old telephone line, which also can’t transmit as much data or provide as many robust features as an Internet-based voice service.
Small companies and solopreneurs are eager to upgrade to the VoIP arena because it affords them the chance to get dynamic calling features and communication tools that they normally couldn’t afford with a traditional phone plan. There are several platforms out there today and they have various levels of plans available for everyone from solo users to enterprise organizations.
What is VoIP, exactly? Well, essentially, it’s just the use of voice calls over Internet lines instead of phone lines. Think of tools like Google Voice or Zoom—you’re making a “call”, but you’re doing it over the Internet. This offers a lot of benefits for businesses today, including:
Ultimately, you’ll have to weigh the options and take a minute to determine which VoIP solutions are going to be right for your business. Note that we didn’t say “decide whether VoIP is right for you”—that’s because it’s the way of the future and there aren’t many businesses that won’t find benefits if they take the time to look.
It helps if you can learn a little about VoIP before you dive in, but a lot of the providers out there today are ready and waiting to help you learn everything that you need to know. Make sure that you compare the options, and when doing so, think about how much you can scale or customize the platform, whether it is aligned with your communication goals and other relevant factors.
With a little bit of planning, an upgrade to VoIP can change the communications of your business for the better. Now, let’s look at 10 of the providers that you should consider when you’re ready to switch.
RingCentral sets brands up for success with plenty of robust virtual VoIP features and services. The platform began as one of the first to offer Internet faxing and today it has become a leader in VoIP services. There are a lot of plans available here and you can pick and choose the features that you want. It will also give you the option to upgrade to a higher plan with more features if you are willing to spend a little more.
Even under the $50 mark, you can upgrade to a plan that has more customization and a better selection of features than the basic plan, giving you more for your money when you have a bit more to spend. You can even find reporting tools and analytics, and RingCentral makes integrations easy with your other software platforms and tools.
Check out features like:
Vonage is among the best in VoIP services, and they are notable for also being among the first to provide this service to people. They offer an array of plans and solutions and can help you customize what your business needs. Plus, every plan includes unlimited messages and calls, and you will be able to set up AI-enabled workflows.
Premium plans offer CRM integrations and other features, as well as more customization options. You can find tons of tools and resources in the Vonage App Center, and numbers are available for more than 50 countries. It’s a great platform to try for those who want a reliable name.
Highlights of this provider include:
8x8 has plenty of plans available with several different features. The Express plan is just $12 a month and that’s not much to get started with all the features that you get. The platform offers a simple setup, and you can use it seamlessly on mobile or desktop, allowing you to keep communications streamlined. It is on several of the top lists for its features and integrations, too.
With 8x8, you will be able to choose a plan, customize the features, and even upgrade security features or premium integrations. Intelligent call routing and premium uptime ensure that your communications never miss a beat. You can even choose annual billing to get discounts on your plans by paying a yearly subscription.
Highlights of this platform include:
Ooma has a great platform that takes VoIP to a new level. You can choose to subscribe right away or buy an Ooma device, which comes with a free basic plan and a 60-day trial of the premier package. Of course, for about $20 a month, you can get the upgraded Ooma Office package that comes with more customization and better features.
Ooma can integrate with smart devices like Alexa and Amazon Echo, and it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Voicemail transcription and other advanced features are available, too, and you’ll be able to create a calling solution that suits the needs of your business.
Check out features like:
GoToConnect is a premier choice for VoIP on the market today. They have a basic plan that’s just $24 a month and there are plenty of upgrades available that still land under the $50 mark. This service makes it easy to keep your existing numbers, choose vanity numbers, add online faxing and video conferencing solutions, and more.
With GoToConnect, there is a virtual suite of tools with plenty of cloud storage and you can have up to 250 participants per meeting. There are advanced analytics and other features available when you upgrade, too, and you’ll always get unlimited calls and messages.
Plus, check out features like:
Phone.com is a more affordable option for those who aren’t looking for anything too fancy. The platform offers a variety of solutions for VoIP service at a price that’s pretty impressive when compared to the others. There are plans for all types of business needs and unlike a lot of providers at this price point, you can have up to 300 participants on audio calls.
This platform may lack some customization aspects and it doesn’t have all the robust features of some higher-cost programs, but it does have a lot of great features for the price. If you’re on a budget and just getting started with VoIP, this could be the platform to help you get there.
Key highlights include:
Dialpad is another affordable option for VoIP for those who need something different. The features are quite impressive, starting with AI-based intelligence and tools to collect actionable content from every call so that you can monitor things along the way. It integrates with plenty of tools and can even sync contacts, making it easy to stay in touch.
Reporting features are a bit limited when compared to other platforms, but it does offer a lot of customization for an affordable price. If you need basic VoIP tools that get the job done, this platform could be the ideal solution. Video conferencing costs extra, but if you don’t use that a lot, it’s not a big deal.
Check out the highlights, including:
With Nextiva, you can get all kinds of contact center solutions for your business, no matter what you have in mind. The VoIP platform offers interactive AI and automated call routing features, along with several plans that fit within the $50 or less price range. Nextiva integrates with Outlook and your Google Contacts for easy contact syncing.
Even the Enterprise plan, which offers unlimited audio and over 12,000 minutes, is still less than $50 per month. Plus, the trial is 30 days long, giving you plenty of time to try things out. The mobile app and desktop platform are both easy to use, although some people say the mobile features are less functional than some apps.
Check out key features like:
Freshdesk has a fully integrated suite of tools to help your business communicate and manage day-to-day tasks, including the Freshdesk Contact Center for making and taking calls on a VoIP service instead of through the traditional telephone lines. The platform offers scalable solutions and an intuitive program that learns as it goes.
Interactions are personalized and there are performance reporting features ready to assist you, too. Advanced AI ensures that every conversation gets the resolution it needs, and you can use the smart reporting to reduce workloads and improve communication results. Plus, the platform has won several awards and is recommended by several industry experts.
Check out highlights like:
If you’ve got 300 or fewer employees and are users of Microsoft 365, their Business Voice add-on could be the VoIP solution that you need. Microsoft offers this as an add-on only but it’s an affordable solution that comes with a free month to try it out if you want to see what it can do. The platform makes it easy to call from desktop, mobile, and even standard phone systems, and they’re available for 24/7 support, 365 days a year.
If you’re an SMB looking for a simpler way to upgrade to VoIP, Microsoft 365 Business Voice could be just what you need. It has affordable solutions and more enterprise-style plans for the SMB that needs a more inclusive solution without completely switching platforms.
Features of this VoIP app include:
In case upgrading to VoIP isn’t enough to improve your contact center or business communications, you might need to take things one step further. When you hire the virtual receptionists at Smith.ai, you’ll get a team of live agents that can field calls, chats, and so much more, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Then, you can focus on running your business and let someone else field the phone (and data) lines.
Plus, we’ll even help you craft a strategy to manage it all, no matter what services you need. Let our dedicated receptionists show you how easy integrated communications can be and help us customize the solution that suits your business best.
To learn more, schedule a consultation to discuss what our 24/7 virtual receptionists can do to improve your communications, from live chat and after-hours answering to SMS message answering, and more. You can also find us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (650) 727-6484.