Cheap VoIP Service Auburn
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Choosing a cheap VoIP service in Auburn
If you’re an SMB looking to implement VoIP, you need to balance getting the best price with getting an acceptable quality of service. With that in mind, here’s a quick guide to choosing a cheap VoIP service in Auburn.
Start by identifying what you want to replace
You can definitely replace landline phones and old-school faxes. You are unlikely to be able to eliminate cell phones but it’s usually worth keeping them in mind in any case. Cell phone rates are so expensive that anything you can do to move traffic onto VoIP could result in meaningful savings.
A note on Fax over IP
If you need a fax service, then Fax over IP (efax) is almost always the right way to go. Most VoIP service vendors will support it. If, however, you come across one which doesn’t, you could fill in the gap with a dedicated Fax over IP vendor.
Decide what, if any, value-add services you need
In principle, VoIP gives SMBs affordable access to what were once enterprise-only features. In practice, if you’re aiming to reduce your costs, you’ll want to focus on value-add services that contribute to that goal. This keeps the implementation project as simple as possible and hence the costs at a minimum. Once this initial implementation has been absorbed into the business, and you are enjoying the cost-savings, you can then decide if you want to go further.
Most VoIP service vendors will include a handful of standard value-add services for free (or at very low cost). These would typically include the likes of voicemail, caller ID, and detailed call-logging. Other services you might want to consider adding at the first pass are conference-calling, video-recording, and all-recording.
Conference calling is easy to implement and can be hugely useful so it can usually justify a place in a VoIP implementation. Video-calling is resource-intensive but its costs (and the extra security issues it generates) can often be justified if it can be used as a replacement for business travel. Call-recording is technically straightforward (under VoIP) but there are a lot of legalities to consider so it’s important to work with a VoIP service vendor who can ensure that the necessary procedures are followed.
Define your minimum service standards
Now you know what VoIP services you want to implement, you will need to define your minimum service standards for them. These should cover service quality, security, and compliance and customer service and support. It’s strongly recommended to set these before you even start looking at VoIP service vendors and only to look at VoIP service vendors who can meet them. If they cannot, even if they only fall slightly short, then they need to be rejected no matter what prices they can offer.
List the equipment you will need and think about how you want to pay for it- Provide Strong Tag
For user-facing equipment, your main choice is between softphones and VoIP handsets. The former you will get from your VoIP service vendor, usually for free (or for very low cost). The latter you can buy independently or have bundled as part of your VoIP service contract. You may be able to get other equipment with your contract too (for example headsets and webcams). This might not get you the very best deal on price, but it would allow you to spread the cost.
For back-end equipment, most SMBs will be looking at a choice of managed hosting plus a service contract and a VoIP service contract which includes hosting. The former might be more economical but the convenience of the latter could make it worth the price.
Analyze your call usage
There are two reasons for analyzing your historic and current call usage. Firstly, you need to understand your call volumes. It’s particularly important to know your peaks. It’s also very helpful to know your standard volume and any times when the lines are quiet. This not only lets you see how much bandwidth you’re going to need but may be helpful when setting processes for how some services are used. For example, you would usually do everything possible to limit video-calling to periods when your network is likely to be quiet.
Secondly, understanding how your phones (and faxes) are used now will guide you in your choice of calling plan. You want to know what percentage of your calls are internal/intra-company, local, domestic, and international. For international calls, you want to know the destination country or at least the region. If possible, you want to split-out calls to landlines and calls to cell phones as they are likely to be charged at different rates.
If you’d like to speak to one of the best cheap VoIP service partners in Auburn, please click here now to contact Aperio.IT.