When you need to find the right business telephone provider for your company in Douglas, MI, it can be confusing choosing between the options available to you. However, the telephone is the first way that most people, especially clients and vendors, will get in touch with you, so having the right type of phone service is very important to a successful business. You want a service that is reliable and that will provide you with every feature that is necessary for you to run a smooth business. Carefully consider the two main types of business phone service companies, VoIP and Analog, before you decide which one is best for your company. You'll need to understand the drawbacks of each service, as well as the benefits. That way, you can make an informed decision about the one that is best for your business overall. Compare these providers in Douglas, MI below and base your final decision on the company that you think is best.
VoIP Phone Service: 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 Douglas, MI, 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.
Choosing the Right VoIP Service for Your Douglas, MI Company
When you start your search for the best phone provider, you'll see that there are many VoIP service suppliers battling to do business with you. While you may be overwhelmed at first, you can actually use this to your advantage.
Consider what you need before you choose a company. You will want to know how many lines you will need, whether you will utilize the special features enough to be worth buying them and if your business has the potential to grow down the road. How much the companies charge for service will also be a factor. If you are a smaller company, you won't want a company that overcharges.
Compare all of the features between the companies to see who offers the most for the best rate. Look into the actual reputation of the company, as well. Finding a cheap VoIP service isn't beneficial if the company has poor customer service and a bad reputation. Remember that your company needs to have a reliable phone service to make and receive calls, so choosing a cheap company can actually lose you money if they do not offer reliable service.
What is Traditional Phone Service?
With traditional phone service, your calls will be carried over the PSTN, a nationwide system of cables, satellites, mobile networks and telephone lines. This analog system has been around for nearly a hundred years and it was the first of its kind when it first started. Using a PSTN telephone service in Douglas, MI can be very expensive because of the size of the infrastructure involved and the cost of maintaining it.
If you plan on sending data over long distances a PSTN service might not be the best choice, as it is an analog system and as such, it has trouble sending data across long distances. This happens because the data will stop at different locations while being transmitted, not does this make it unreliable in long-distance transmissions but it also becomes expensive very quickly, as the data passes through different equipment that is most likely owned by different companies. Currently a lot of the network is digital; however, what is called “the last mile' –the connection between the local central office and the customer– continues to be analog.
PBX: Private Branch Exchange
Most Douglas, MI businesses use a PBX, or private branch exchange, to route the calls that go through their office. A PBX system allows different calling features to function correctly, such as multiple extensions, call forwarding, voicemail and more. It is an important part of the phone system.
A traditional PSTN phone system can utilize the PBX either from the user's premises or from a remote location. But an analog PBX has a big drawback, and that is the expense. When you set up a complete business phone system that includes a PBX, you will need various types of hardware that you will be required to purchase to get started. This expense falls on the business owner and the initial investment can be anywhere from $1,000 and up. Other factors, such as installation and configuration, are also not included in the initial price. Any maintenance that must be done on the PBX will also be the business owner's responsibility. Hiring a professional to come out to look at any problems can cost at least $100 an hour, if not more.
A traditional PBX may also breakdown or parts of it can become obsolete, again a problem that can be very costly to fix. Many of these systems do not support more than a few lines at a time, so upgrading to more if your business grows will add on the expense of having to purchase additional hardware. You'll get stuck paying for costly repairs for years to come if you choose this type of phone system for your business.
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