Despite technological advances in communication, the main way in which people get in touch with businesses is still the telephone. Therefore, choosing a telephone service for your business is very important. However, the effect your telephone service has in your business can be great, which is why it is also hard to choose the appropriate service. A good phone service provider will be reliable and affordable, as well as provide you with all the features your business requires. Evaluating different services and providers is vital so that way you will be able to choose the company that best suits your needs.
There are two types of business phone services offered in Columbia, NJ: Traditional, analog telephone services and business VoIP service. Understanding the difference between them is key to choosing a provider. Below we will compare business phone services to give you the information you need to make the best choice.
What is Business VoIP Phone Service?
The more recent type of phone service, VoIP, stands for voice over Internet protocol. This is a new alternative to using the more traditional analog phone lines of the past. VoIP phone service in Columbia, NJ has been around for nearly a decade but has just now become more popular among business owners. Many people are making the switch to VoIP from their traditional PSTN lines. Newer companies, especially small start-ups, are also more likely to choose this type of service for their company. They'll get the same call quality as they would with analog but at a lesser price. Calls are carried through your current Internet provider, so it is important to make sure your connection is strong enough that all of your calls always go through. Use the Wirefly Internet Speed Test to make sure your current Internet service provider supports VoIP before choosing a company. If they don't, it would be worth the switch to find a company that does, as you will save money in the end.
The biggest difference between these two phone services is the way that phone calls are carried. Most people using the analog system know that their calls are run through cables and telephone lines. VoIP calls are actually digital and go through your Internet connection instead. This is a less expensive way of making phone calls than by the regular old analog system, so making and receiving calls costs the consumer less. It is also much cheaper to make international and long distance calls with VoIP. Look for a company who has a flat rate package available for these types of calls if you frequently make long distance phone calls from your place of business. You won't have to worry about the cost of per minute calls if you have a package that includes everything.
Another perk of VoIP service in Columbia, NJ is that these phone service companies offer many different calling features to their customers. You're probably used to having perks such as call waiting, Caller ID, voicemail and call forwarding. VoIP service offers these and more, such as fax to email, remote access to voicemail, and multiple extensions.
Most VoIP providers strive to meet the needs of all of their Columbia, NJ businesses by offering their service to companies both big and small. Maybe you only need one or two lines for your small, family owned company, or your larger corporation needs hundreds of extensions to meet the needs of all of their employees. No matter what you need for your company, there will be a phone service that can fit the bill.
Choosing the Right VoIP Provider in Columbia, NJ
You'll find that there are many service providers who will try and get you to hire their business in Columbia, NJ. Use the competition you will find to your advantage while you compare and contrast their different plans and rates. Don't settle for the first company that comes your way, and don't let any sales people push you into choosing their plan before you understand what you are getting into.
You'll always want to make a list of the services you absolutely have to have for your company. You may need call forwarding because you close certain days and hours and need to get your calls right away. You could need multiple lines for your larger company or just one for your small store.
Then, look up different offers from business VoIP providers. Check out what type of features they provide and how much they are. You should also double-check their reputation before choosing a company. If they have poor customer service, this isn't a good sign. Remember, your customers need to get ahold of you, so a working phone line is an essential part of owning a business. If a company has too many complaints against them, you may consider passing them by, no matter how cheap they are.
Understanding PSTN Phone Service
Traditional analog service is known as PSTN, or public switched telephone network. This system is well over a hundred years old and was the first type of phone service available. The PSTN system is used all over the country and consists of satellites, cables and telephone lines. Our current mobile system is also part of the PSTN phone service system.
The PSTN system is actually more expensive to use in Columbia, NJ, because of the large infrastructure that needs to be constantly monitored and taken care of due to the age of the system itself. Since the PSTN uses an analog system, data being sent over a long distance can have trouble getting there.
Long distance calls made over the PSTN phone system requires the data to make a number of stops at various locations along the way through transmission. This data flows through equipment owned by a few different companies, making calls more expensive. Most parts of the infrastructure that calls are carried on have been fully digitalized, but the connection found between the local centre office and the consumer is still analog. This is known as the “last mile' and causes this type of system to cost more for consumers.
Using a PBX With An Analog Phone System
Most Columbia, NJ 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, NJ 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.
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