Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is a communications tool that helps users to make and receive calls over the internet, rather than using a traditional phone line. The VoIP system works by converting digital sound into packets of information, so it can be transmitted through the internet. Using voice over IP, conversations are possible wherever the internet is available.
This solution for internet telephony has become increasingly popular over the years, not just among large businesses, but also as part of small enterprise solutions. Compared to traditional phone lines that are often difficult to set up and maintain, VoIP offers simplicity and flexibility for growing companies. The advent of wireless internet technology brought massive benefits for the use of VoIP, reducing the reliance on hardware to make and receive calls.
Moving away from wired telephone setups and on-site private branch exchanges, businesses are no longer restricted by the hardware they have in the office. This makes physical change, such as moving office or expanding a team, much easier to manage. Thanks to the simplicity of using VoIP, companies can install and configure their new technology with ease, adding new features and capabilities as their business expands.
The Benefits of VoIP for SMBs
Often, the biggest benefit of VoIP cited for SMBs is how cost-effective the technology is. The most obvious difference is the infrastructure required. Because of VoIP’s digital nature, much of the technology structure is software rather than hardware, which lowers operational and maintenance costs significantly.
Thanks to its use of the internet and geographical-agnostic connectivity, the operating costs of Voice over IP are a lot lower than those of traditional phone companies. VoIP significantly reduces international and domestic call costs; it also means that you no longer have to maintain separate networks for your phones and data lines.
Because VoIP allows you to take your office extension phone wherever you go with a smartphone, your mobile call costs are slashed too. There’s even the option to tap into video and audio conferencing to reduce the needs for employees to travel back and forth to the office to attend meetings and collaborate with colleagues.
On top of the cost-efficiency that VoIP provides, there is a range of other benefits to consider too. For instance, VoIP technology helps ensure small businesses can maintain a consistently excellent call quality whenever they’re connecting with customers. Additionally, since there’s more to VoIP than just making and receiving calls, the technology allows you to incorporate other communication services, like presence information, instant messaging, video conferencing and more.
Unlocking the Advantages of VoIP
VoIP technology provides small businesses with a comprehensive communication landscape that can scale and adapt to their changing needs. Compared to traditional analogue phone systems, many companies even consider VoIP to be much more secure. What’s more, provided you have internet access, you can use your VoIP system wherever you go, making and receiving calls from multiple devices for greater flexibility.
For small businesses, the benefits of voice include:
- Improved all-around cost-efficiency
- Better support for remote and mobile workers
- Increased productivity via enhanced communication tools
- The state-of-the-art manageable call quality
- Access to advanced tools like call recording services and automated assistants
More importantly, as your business evolves, your VoIP technology can transform with you. IP systems can scale to meet company demands, adding new features and functionality whenever you decide that you need to upgrade your communication stack.
Bringing VoIP to the SMB
Although VoIP has been around for quite some time in the communications landscape, there are still a number of small businesses that have yet to take advantage of the technology. Whether that’s due to restrictive telephony contracts, lack of awareness or reticence to change, the transition is practically inevitable. Investment in cloud-based communications technology is on the increase and will get close to saturation over the next few years.
The internet is awash with information about what VoIP is and how it works, along with how to make the most of its capability. If your organisation hasn’t tapped into the power of VoIP yet, now could be the perfect time to begin your transformation. RingCentral offers tailored packages specifically for SMBs to take advantage of an IP-based phone line. Get in touch today to find out more.
Originally published Jun 03, 2020, updated Jan 17, 2023