Choosing a Business Phone Service Provider in Columbia, MD
Being contacted via telephone is still the most popular way for people to get in touch with a business. Therefore, having the best telephone service provider in Columbia, MD is still important and beneficial to your company. You will always want a service that is not only reliable, but affordable for your needs. A business phone service provider should offer all the different features that you will need to run your business, so it is important to make your decision carefully before deciding on what phone company you are going to go with. Evaluate the different service types that each provider offers. When you are deciding, you'll be faced with two choices, these being either a traditional analog phone service or a VoIP service. They both have different features so it is important that you understand the distinctions. Compare these two Columbia, MD business providers below before making your final decision.
* Most providers offering unlimited calling and or other promotions have restrictions based on term contracts or promo periods. Rates shown do not include E-911 charges and taxes. Read providers terms and conditions before you purchase.
VoIP Phone Service in Columbia, MD: How Does it Work?
VoIP stands for voice over Internet protocol. This type of phone service has been in use for more than a decade but has only become mainstream in the past few years. Many businesses have decided to try something new and get rid of their PSTN service. New companies, particularly start-ups, are also more likely to try VoIP phone service for their communication needs with their companies. Calls are simply carried through the company Internet provider and are exactly the same as when you use a traditional line. However, since your Internet will be used to conduct business calls, you will want to make sure your connection is strong and secure. If you would like, use our Wirefly Internet Speed Test to make sure you have dependable VoIP call quality.
The biggest difference when it comes to VoIP and PSTN service is the way the calls are carried through each one. A PSTN service still uses an analog signal to deliver calls. With a VoIP service, all calls are digitized and are sent through an Internet service provider instead. Using the Internet to carry calls is much more affordable than using a traditional analog service, so making and receiving phone calls costs less. This is especially helpful for any business that has to make a lot of long distance or international phone calls for their company. Many VoIP providers offer flat rate packages that are specifically for making long distance calls so their customers do not have to worry about huge rate increases on their bills every month.
With a VoIP service in Columbia, MD, you can also request every type of feature that you would get with a PSTN phone service. You are probably used to features such as Caller ID and call forwarding, and these are basic features that most companies offer. You can also put in multiple extensions, have remote access to your voicemail and enjoy fax to voicemail when you choose a VoIP service provider. Just ask your provider when you set up your lines about all the extra features they supply.
How to Choose a VoIP Service Provider in Columbia, MD
The rise in popularity of VoIP services, especially among smaller businesses and startups, means that there are many providers in the market who are competing to convince you that they are the best choice. Choosing a provider may seem difficult, however, the popularity of VoIP and the number of providers in the market can work to your advantage because it means that the chances of finding the perfect one are higher.
The most important thing to establish before choosing a provider is what your communication needs are. Small businesses will not need a big package with many add-ons, while bigger corporations will benefit from these. Asking yourself how many lines you will need, or which features you will use on a regular basis will ensure that you do not pay for unnecessary items. It is key to consider the predicted growth of your business, this will help you figure out the type of contract you sign as well as assist you in evaluating how much you can spend on a phone service provider.
After you have established all of the above you can look into what the VoIP providers in Columbia, MD are offering. Consider which services they provide and if they are affordable. Remember that with the number of providers in the market, investigating the company's reputation can save you a lot of frustration and money. A good phone system can be crucial to your business's success so make sure that you hire a service that has a good record in terms of reliability and customer service.
What is Plain Old Telephone Service in Columbia, MD?
With a traditional phone service, your calls will be carried over the POTS, which is also known as a PSTN (public switched telephone network). This system exists all throughout the nation and is composed of many wires, satellite dishes, cellular networks, and landlines. POTS has existed for nearly 100 years and was the first telephone network created.
Having a POTS phone service costs quite a bit more than VoIP in Columbia, MD, primarily because the POTS framework is incredibly sizable, creaky, and demands continual upkeep. Since POTS is an analog-based system, it's hard for it to dispatch information across distances of any length.
Whenever you call some long distance on a POTS line, the signal will pause at several spots along its path of transmission. Because the signal will move through machinery being operated by a number of businesses, long-distance calls placed on a POTS line are not cheap. Much of the hardware once used to transport, exchange, and direct calls has become completely digitized, but the final link (the bridge linking the regional office to the user) remains analog.
Using a PBX With An Analog Phone System in Columbia, MD
Most Columbia, MD businesses use a private branch exchange, called a PBX, to route the numerous calls they receive. Having a business phone service in place enables the PBX to allow for the use of such important calling features beyond sending and receiving calls, such as multiple extensions, voicemail, call forwarding and conference calls.
Using a traditional PSTN phone system, the PBX either be located on the business's premises, or situated at a remote location. But no matter where the analog PBX is located, its operation can prove very expensive. Setting up a complete business phone system using a PBX requires the purchase of various types of hardware that usually means an investment of at least $1,000. Beyond that initial investment are the costs for installation, configuration and maintenance. A business owner will need to either have an in-house technical staff member handle these chores, or hire an outside professional, translating to costs of $100 an hour or more.
Know that upgrading and expanding a traditional PBX system for your Columbia, MD business phone service needs may prove expensive as well as challenging. Many PBX systems can only support a limited number of lines. As your business grows, you will have to pay for more hardware, installation and maintenance costs when adding more extensions.
PBX systems, like other types of electronic hardware, are subject to frequent problems and breakdowns that can adversely affect your business communications, usually at the most inopportune times. Be prepared to pay for expensive repair and hardware replacement costs whenever anything goes wrong with your PBX. Any PBX system also becomes obsolete over time and needs to be updated or replaced, adding additional expenses to your business' bottom line.
Business Phone Service Providers in Columbia, MD ZIP Codes
Wirefly Is America's Most Trusted Source For All Cell Phones, Plans, TV, and Internet Deals
Wirefly offers great deals on a large selection of smartphones, cell phones, tablets, mobile hotspots, and other wireless devices for the nation's most popular carriers. Use Wirefly’s innovative cell phone and plan comparison tools to ensure you are getting the best deal on the market. Shop with confidence knowing that Wirefly wants to help you find the best prices on cell phones, cell phone plans, TV, and Internet service.