Are you curious about a cloud-based phone system and whether it would fit your business well? If you're like most business owners, you're always looking for ways to make your company more efficient and save money. A cloud-based phone system may be just what you need.
This blog post will answer the thirteen most common questions concerning cloud-based phone systems. We'll cover everything from what they are, to how they work, to whether or not they are suitable for your business. Keep reading to learn more!
1. What Is A Cloud-Based Phone System, and How Does it work?
Cloud-Based Phone Systems are designed to offer greater data security, access to more features, and scalability than traditional phone services. Cloud Phone Systems utilize the internet, so businesses are no longer tied down by using hardware phones.
Companies have access to their Cloud Phone System via a computer, tablet, or smartphone, meaning they can quickly switch between devices without losing data or audio quality. We'll cover more of this in the questions below.
Cloud Phone Systems also allow advanced telephony features and integrations with apps and programs already used in many workplace environments. With Cloud Phone Systems in place, business owners and employees can remain connected at all times with increased reliability and flexibility across multiple Customer-Facing Platforms.
2. What are the benefits of using a cloud-based phone system for my business?
A cloud-based phone system can provide a multitude of benefits to businesses. By taking advantage of cloud technology, a company can access the latest features and services that traditional telephone systems can't offer. With features such as virtual conferencing, call routing, and automated attendants, important calls no longer slip through the cracks. Plus, remote employees can join work conversations as they are right in your office.
Cloud-based phone systems also feature high scalability and flexibility levels, allowing businesses to accommodate rapid growth while increasing agility and cost savings. Lastly, experiencing minimal interruptions is vital for successful communication, so with these types of systems running on hardware-independent architecture, businesses are ensured reliable connection quality at all times.
3. How Is a Cloud-based Phone System Different from a Traditional PBX?
A cloud-based phone system is rapidly becoming the go-to choice for businesses looking to modernize their communication systems. By utilizing a cloud server, users can access their phone systems online; this allows them to manage and configure settings with great ease and convenience. The traditional PBX system is based on an expensive hardware device located at office premises, which makes it extremely costly and inaccessible for businesses outside the local area.
A cloud-based phone system is rapidly becoming the go-to choice for businesses looking to modernize their communication systems.
You've likely heard of a PBX phone system but may need to learn what it is and how it works. A PBX (Private Branch Exchange) phone system can be an efficient solution for businesses that manage multiple incoming and outgoing phone lines. The technology routes call from the public switched telephone network based in your building to users within a company via internal phone lines, allowing for increased call volume, easier transfers, and consolidating voicemail systems.
However, a cloud-based system affords scalability, meaning that as your business grows, you can pay only for the number of connections you need during any given period without having to incur high costs or disruption in service. The features of a cloud-based system far surpass those offered by a traditional PBX, making it an ideal choice for businesses of all sizes.
4. How can I be sure that a cloud-based phone system is suitable for my company?
Cloud-based phone technology has revolutionized how companies communicate, offering them abundant features, versatility, and flexibility. With a VoIP office phone system and cloud services, businesses can enjoy VoIP's advantages and efficiently manage their design. No matter how small or large, every company can benefit from cloud applications, from Voicemail to conferencing services.
In addition, updates are implemented seamlessly on VoIP, ensuring businesses keep up to date with all the latest tools and features for them to succeed. Cloud-based VoIP phone systems thus have the potential to provide any company with the support it needs for smooth communication regardless of size and scale.
5. Are there any potential downsides to using a cloud-based phone system for my business communications needs?
When it comes to modern business communications, a cloud-based phone system can be an invaluable asset. However, there are potential drawbacks that should not be overlooked either.
One potential downside is that a faster internet connection is required to function correctly. Additionally, the stability of your internet connection is critical—if you suffer outages, your ability to failover to alternative solutions may be limited too. Finally, latency (the delay between sending and receiving data) and jitter (the variance in latency) can cause disruptions when using a cloud-based phone system, so reliable performance needs to be within reach. With these considerations in mind, businesses can ensure their cloud-based phone system runs optimally for their particular communication needs.
These, however, should be fine for any modern-day business. Today's digital-first world demands that companies keep up with the latest internet speeds, meaning having a fast connection with plenty of bandwidth is no longer an optional luxury.
Investing in an upgrade to faster internet service can ensure your business is the most efficient and successful it can be. This will enable you to take advantage of opportunities that come up quickly. Choosing to upgrade can also give you peace of mind by reducing the risk of slow speeds or bandwidth issues slowing you down and impacting customer satisfaction. Furthermore, upgrading to the right internet plan can help eliminate unexpected expenses due to overage charges. Ultimately, switching to a faster connection and ample bandwidth enables businesses to become more agile and competitive, eventually unlocking even more potential for success.
6. What's the Best Business Cloud-based Phone System?
The best business VoIP phone system is characterized by call quality equal or better to traditional telephony options, affordable monthly costs that fit any budget, and a versatile and multifunctional platform with intuitive user controls. Beyond the call quality, the best systems should provide reliable data security, call routing options for call repurposing, mobility capabilities to take calls on the go, and even virtual assistant features like automated call screening and voicemail transcription. A great VoIP system will support existing hardware while simultaneously integrating with modern cloud-based workflows and automating tedious tasks so you can focus on core business operations.
The right VoIP phone system for any business should factor in its employees' and customers' needs to optimize call quality, cost-effectiveness, and productivity. Companies like Creative-13 understand the needs of modern businesses and can consult on which phone system would be the most efficient and reliable for you. Not only are cloud-based systems more affordable, but they also offer greater flexibility, scalability, and enhanced security. With a team of experts on hand to help make sure your operations run smoothly, you can rest assured that the right company will provide you with the perfect phone system for your business needs!
7. What Is the Call Quality of Cloud-based Phones?
Cloud-based phones offer various features that make work easier and help companies stay connected. However, one of the most important benefits of a cloud-based phone system is that companies can make and receive clear calls with virtually no disruption in sound quality. As discussed in several points above, with access to high-performance networks and specialized technology, a cloud-based phone platform allows conversations to occur clearly, even if different people call from separate locations. Companies that switch to a cloud-based phone system can rest assured that their conversations will remain smooth and crystal clear– regardless of where everyone's voice is coming from.
8. Can My Employees Use a Cloud-based Phone System with Their Cell Phones?
Yes. As more and more companies are transitioning to working from home, leveraging a company's cloud-based phone system on an employee's cell phone can be a great way to communicate and collaborate anywhere in the world. Such a system can enable employees to have voice and text communications and conduct video chats using a service provider's mobile app. Using this type of system empowers companies to save money while keeping their teams connected no matter where they are located.
With the best business mobile apps, your business number is your most precious asset. You can have unlimited talk and text, ensure your team answers your calls with a call queue, and let your customers select the department they wish to reach with an automated call menu. In addition to these features, you also get voicemail functionality so that your customers receive your outgoing messages whether or not your team is available. This will assure your customers that their queries are heard and addressed efficiently.
By switching to a cloud-based phone system, you can enjoy many benefits, including lower costs, increased flexibility and scalability, and improved call quality.
9. What's the Device Configuration of a Cloud Phone System?
A cloud phone system typically uses internet-based telephony technology, which allows phone calls to be made and received through the internet rather than traditional telephone lines. The device configuration for a cloud phone system typically includes the following:
A softphone (software that allows phone calls to be made and received on a computer or mobile device).
A VoIP office phone that a worker can set on the desk and use throughout the day.
An internet connection.
A cloud-based platform that manages the phone system's features and functionality.
Some cloud phone systems may require additional hardware, such as an IP PBX or gateway, to connect to traditional telephone lines.
10. How Much Does a Cloud-based Phone System Cost?
The cost of a cloud-based phone system can vary depending on the specific features and services you require. However, cloud-based phone systems are generally more affordable than traditional, on-premises systems.
A basic cloud-based phone system can cost as little as $15 per user per month. This system may include basic features such as call forwarding, Voicemail, and call recording.
More advanced cloud-based phone systems with additional features such as call queues, auto-attendants, and virtual meetings can cost $20 to $30 per user per month. Some providers will charge per-minute usage, and additional features like call recording, SMS, phone numbers, etc., will be an additional cost.
There are also more advanced cloud-based phone systems that offer even more features and integrations, such as CRM integration and analytics, which can cost $40 or more per user per month.
It's important to note that costs can vary depending on the provider, the number of users, and the specific features and services you require. It's best to research different providers and compare their pricing options and features to find the best solution for your business.
11. Are international calls supported with Cloud-based systems?
Yes, most cloud-based phone systems support making and receiving international calls. The ability to make international calls is usually included as a standard service feature and does not require any additional hardware or configuration. The cost of international calls may vary depending on the service provider and the destination country. Some service providers may offer competitive rates for international calls, while others may charge a premium. Additionally, some cloud-based phone systems can provide international toll-free numbers, allowing customers from other countries to call the business without incurring international charges.
12. Can I still use my current phone number with a cloud-based phone system, or do I need to get a new one?"
Yes, you can use your current phone number with a cloud-based phone system. This process is called number porting, allowing you to keep your existing phone number when switching to a new phone service provider.
The number porting process typically involves the following steps:
A. Confirm that your current phone number is eligible for porting: Not all phone numbers are suitable. You'll need to confirm that your current phone number can be ported to the new provider.
B. Obtain a letter of authorization (LOA): This document authorizes the transfer of your phone number to the new provider. Your new provider will typically provide you with an LOA form to fill out.
C. Provide your new provider with the necessary information: You will need to provide your new provider with information such as the phone number you want to port, the account number with your current provider, and the billing address associated with the number.
D. Wait for the porting process to be completed: The actual porting process can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks. It is important to note that during this period, you may experience disruptions in service as the numbers get ported.
E. Update your contacts and marketing materials: Once the porting process is completed, you will need to update your communications and marketing materials with the new phone number, if any.
It's important to check with your chosen provider for their specific process, costs, and time frame for number porting. Some providers may charge a fee for the number porting process, while others may include it as part of the service.
13. How long does it take to get set up and running?"
The time it takes to set up a cloud-based business phone system can vary depending on the specific provider and the features and services you require. However, most providers can have a basic system up and running within a few hours or several days, depending on the size of your facility or campus.
The more advanced features like CRM integration, voicemail transcription, call recording, analytics, and others may take longer to set up and configure. Some providers offer a self-service setup and management portal, which can speed up the process, while others provide an assisted setup service, which will take longer but ensure a more seamless setup process.
Overall, it's best to check with your chosen provider to estimate the setup time for your specific needs.
LET'S WRAP IT UP
A cloud-based phone system can be an excellent choice for businesses of all sizes. By switching to a cloud-based phone system, you can enjoy many benefits, including lower costs, increased flexibility and scalability, and improved call quality. Creative-13 is here to help you switch to a cloud-based phone system and get the most out of this technology. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your business transition to the cloud!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ryan is a 25-year veteran of the digital marketing industry. He is currently the CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) at Creative-13 with a side gig at PureEdge Media. It's been 20 years since Ryan was an adjunct professor at Colorado Technical University, where he taught Web programming and graphic design courses. His passion is writing. He's been writing blogs, articles, and inspirational pieces for the last 18 years, and his book, "The Formula," is currently in progress.