Choosing the Right Business Phone System for Your Small Business: Key Considerations
No business owner should overlook the importance of a well-functioning phone system. After all, it’s how customers and potential customers reach you. A good phone system not only serves as an efficient communication channel but also creates a positive impression about your company.
But when it comes to selecting a business phone system, the choices can be confusing. To help make the decision-making process easier, here are key considerations when choosing the right business phone system for your small business.
Understanding Your Business Needs
The first step in choosing the right business phone system for your small business is understanding your business needs. What features are important to you?
Do you have remote workers? Do you need messaging and/or video conferencing? Do you need your phone system to be able to connect to software to achieve your business goals? This is the most important place to start.
Reviewing Types of Phone Systems
Understanding the different types of business phones can be a complex task for any small business owner. To quickly summarize, there are three most common types of business phone systems:
- Premise Based: Equipment is physically located onsite at a company. This is what you may think of as a traditional phone system for businesses.
- Hosted VoIP: The entire system is managed online (in the cloud) and no equipment is involved.
- Hybrid: Combination of premise-based and hosted VoIP systems.
Budget considerations are crucial when selecting the right business phone system for your small business. It’s not just about the upfront cost of the system; it’s also about the long-term operational costs and the return on investment. The price of business phone systems can vary significantly based on the type of phone system, number of users, and hardware and ongoing support required.
Of the three options listed above, a premise-based system is more expensive upfront and may be more expensive to maintain and upgrade over time. A hosted VoIP system has a low startup cost because there is no hardware to buy.
Features and Flexibility
When considering which business phone system is right for your small business, it is important to consider the features you need and how much flexibility is available. Make sure that the system you select is able to accommodate your current needs as well as any changes that might occur in the future.
Additionally, look for features that can help enhance your customer service experience such as call forwarding, caller ID, conferencing capabilities, auto-attendant functions and voicemail. Many systems offer “follow me” options that forward calls from your office line to your mobile device when you’re away from the desk – enabling you to never miss an important call!
Once you have a business phone system in place, it is important to ensure that you have the technical support needed to keep it running properly. Make sure the system you select offers reliable customer service and technical support, as well as training materials for new users.
Good questions to ask include: Does the provider offer 24/7 support? Is there knowledgeable and responsive staff? Will I receive resources for troubleshooting and system management?
Remember, a well-supported phone system can save your business from potential communication disruptions and ensure smooth operations.
Integration With Other Technologies
It is also important to consider how your business phone system will integrate with other technologies. For example, if you use CRM software or VoIP services, make sure that the system you select is compatible with these tools. Additionally, look for a phone system that offers integration with other communication methods like email and text messaging.
Your business is expected to grow over time, and you should make sure that your phone system can keep up with the growth of your company and scale accordingly. Research systems that offer add-on features such as additional lines or extensions and look for those which will be easy to upgrade or expand if needed.
Finally, it is essential to ensure that your business phone system is secure. VoIP phone systems can be vulnerable to cyber threats, since they are managed online, making it crucial to choose a provider that prioritizes security.
When choosing a business phone system, consider whether the provider offers encryption, fraud detection, and other security features. It’s also advisable to inquire about their data privacy policies and how they handle potential breaches.
Ultimately, a secure phone system will protect not only your business operations but also the sensitive information of your clients and employees.
Choosing the right business phone system for your small business is a decision that requires careful consideration. Your phone system is more than just a tool for communication; it’s an integral part of your business operations that can impact productivity, customer service, and even your bottom line.
RanderCom is an expert in business phone systems serving small and mid-size businesses in the Fox Valley. Located in Appleton, we also provide managed IT services, building security and access control and more services to make business easier.
We are happy to discuss which business phone system meets your needs and won’t break the bank. Contact us today.
By Dylan Esterling, Owner of RanderCom
Dylan Esterling is the proud owner of RanderCom, serving Appleton, Green Bay, and communities across Wisconsin. At RanderCom, Dylan and his team offer comprehensive small-business technology solutions. Services include the sales and installation of phone systems, surveillance systems, access control systems, paging & intercom systems, voice & data services, data cabling & wiring, and IT network equipment. With years of experience in installing business phone systems and other systems, you can trust RanderCom to meet your small business tech needs. Contact us today!