Choosing Your Phone Service Provider in Lake City, MI
Are you a business owner who is in need of putting in a phone line for your office or building? If you are, you have more options than previous business owners did years ago. While we all love the use of social media to promote our business services, most customers still use the phone to call in orders, ask questions and voice concerns, to name just a few reasons. You will need a reliable, dependable phone service provider when you own or operate a business in Lake City, MI, so understanding your choices is important before you make your final decision. You can choose between a VoIP or analog phone service when you are looking for a phone company that will work with your company. Understanding the differences and similarities first will help you make an informed and educated decision that will benefit your company for years to come.
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VoIP Phone Service in Lake City, MI: 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 Lake City, 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.
How to Choose a Business VoIP service in Lake City, MI
Since VoIP is a very popular feature nowadays, there are many different companies that provide it and will compete to get your business. It may seem difficult to make the choice of who gets your business, but you will actually be able to use this to your advantage.
To begin, consider what your needs are when it comes to needing a telephone line for your company. Think about how many lines you will need to have, what types of features your company will absolutely need on a regular basis and if your business could expand in the future. Of course, you will also need to consider how much you can pay for your VoIP service.
After you decide this, consider the different companies in Lake City, MI that offer business VoIP services. You'll be faced with many, but take your time to compare their features and rates. Look at what services they offer, how much they cost and whether they provide service in your area. You'll also want to consider the actual reputation of the company and how long they have been in business. Don't lose sight of the fact that a working business phone is absolutely crucial to your business. You need a company who can deliver on their promises and be there when there is a problem. A good track record of the company and great customer service is also quite important.
What is PSTN, or Traditional Business Phone Service in Lake City, MI?
A traditional phone service carries all calls over the PSTN. This stands for public switched telephone network and is generally what most consumers think of when they think phone service providers. This system has been around for nearly 100 years and is made up of cables, telephone lines, satellites and mobile networks. This was the very first type of phone network to ever be used.
However, the PSTN actually is more expensive than VoIP, because of how old and large the PSTN infrastructure is. It requires very regular maintenance and that cost gets passed onto consumers. PSTN is analog, so it is harder sending data over longer distances.
When someone makes a long distance call to or from a Lake City, MI business using the PSTN, the data stops at different places along its journey. The equipment that is in use is also owned by various companies, making these types of calls more expensive. While most of the infrastructure that carries and routes these calls has become digital, the “last mile' is not. The connection between the caller and the local central office is still analog.
PBX: Private Branch Exchange in Lake City, MI
Most Lake City, 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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