All You Need To Know About Using an Internet Phone System
Many small businesses start with team members communicating through personal cell phone lines rather than a dedicated system. However, operating this way can create challenges with streamlining your communications and displaying a professional presence.
Delaying the transition to an internet phone system can cost you time and money. In fact, reports show that businesses using internet phones save each team member over 30 minutes daily, largely due to greater system availability, employee mobility, and features that cut out rote tasks (source: tech.co)
What are the need-to-know facts about using internet phones? Find out here.
- An internet phone system uses VoIP technology through dedicated hardware or personal devices for connectivity.
- UCaaS software offers the apps businesses need for functional and flexible communications from anywhere.
- Your system’s quality depends on your provider’s reliability for setup and support.
What Is an Internet Phone?
An internet phone uses broadband to conduct voice calls and other messages. The system uses Voice over Internet Protocol technology instead of copper landlines.
A VoIP system avoids the limitations of a traditional analog phone connection. If you hear someone refer to a phone system as POTS, this acronym stands for Plain Old Telephone System. Many organizations are leaving POTS behind and embracing internet phone services with VoIP.
What Are Softphones and Hard Phones?
A VoIP internet phone can operate through a softphone or a hard phone. Hard phones are physical hardware that looks and functions much like traditional analog telephones. Your hard phone will have an ethernet connection instead of or in addition to a phone jack to put the phone online.
Hard phones give your business team easy access to VoIP features in a dedicated piece of equipment. Supplying employees with hard phones can ensure everyone gets communications through a high-quality device that may be less susceptible to damage thanks to sitting in a fixed location.
Softphones are telephone software that users install on connected devices. A team member can put softphone software on a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer. Users can make calls from any device with an internet connection and the necessary software.
Hard phones and softphones are not mutually exclusive. You can create a phone system that uses both, permitting users to switch between them for maximum connectivity.
What Apps Should You Use for a Business Internet Phone System?
Many smartphones and device operating systems arrive with free internet phone software pre-installed. Such apps can be useful for personal calls.
However, these apps often limit call times and may require a landline for registration for each number. Some apps do not offer customer support. Security and encryption protocols vary, and creating an internal system for preserving calls and messages won’t be possible.
An internet phone app that is part of unified communications as a service software integrates your business’s communications into one place, including messaging, email, calls, and chat. A dedicated business app allows team members to stay connected while on the go without compromising security.
What Are the Advantages of Internet Phone Lines?
The list of benefits of an internet phone system stretch on and on. The following are a few of the reasons increasing numbers of businesses rely on VoIP systems.
You can offer better service to your customers with additional business features. You gain access to conferencing and video chat for sales calls and meetings. You can also use an interactive voice response system to accept and forward calls. These features provide the professional presentation every business needs.
A hosted system allows you to scale the number of lines up and down as you require with a quick adjustment in your dashboard. Internet phones also enable you to work with an international team and stay connected. You don’t need to invest in office space and can connect with your remote workers from anywhere.
Your UCaaS apps let you transfer calls from one device to another to take a call on the go or move a mobile call to your desk. You can also set schedules that determine which devices accept calls at a given moment.
Your internet phone service allows for secure encryption and control over your data. You can securely store communications with archiving features for later access.
Bringing your own devices to a hosted VoIP allows you to have a professional business line at a low price. You don’t have to invest in extensive hardware and infrastructure if you don’t want to, and you get access to inexpensive international connections.
How Do You Choose a Solid Internet Phone Setup?
The internet phone system you select depends on your company’s needs. Above all, you should work with a provider that has a strong track record of providing business communications and reliable support to get you operating smoothly for a worry-free experience.
Investigate these issues with the vendor:
- If you need specific hardware, does the provider offer reputable equipment and peripherals, such as wireless headsets?
- How many lines can you put on each device?
- Does the provider offer regular security updates?
Find a provider that is easy to work with and offers abundant features.
How Do You Set Up an Internet Phone System?
When you’re ready to invest in an internet phone system, you can do so with the help of a unified communications provider. A technician will walk you through all of the steps. You only need to know a few things for your purchase and setup:
- Your business’s communications needs
- The features you desire most
- Your internet connection speed
- Your budget
If you struggle to answer any of these, the communications professional is happy to help.
You could also invest in an onsite system with your own hardware for hosting the connection in a physical office. This option is more expensive but offers more control over the system for larger companies that desire it. Your technician can assist with this as well.
How Can Intermedia Help You With Your Internet Phone Setup?
Intermedia has been assisting tens of thousands of businesses to connect better for three decades. Whatever your communications requirements, we can help. Discuss your needs for an internet phone system with the award-winning team at Intermedia.