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VoIP phone numbers for business efficiency

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An employee using a VoIP number to talk to partners and customers

What is a VoIP number?

A VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) phone number is the number assigned to you when you sign up for a VoIP service. It’s basically the string of digits you enter on a dialpad to make a call, much like with traditional landlines. But unlike its older counterpart, a VoIP phone number can be used to call from any internet-enabled device, such as a desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone, and of course, a VoIP phone.

VoIP phones don’t require much of a learning curve or technical know-how. Most of them are essentially plug-and-play instruments in that you can just plug your IP phone into a local available network (LAN) port, and the device will register itself on the VoIP network. From there, you can use your VoIP number like a regular phone number.

A person calling someone using virtual phone system

The power of an internet number

A VoIP number may look and work like a regular number to an end user, but there are differences between these two identifiers. For one, VoIP operates on a data network and therefore makes use of the internet to place calls. This opens up a world of possibilities traditional landline numbers cannot offer, which includes:

Choice of area codes

Traditional phone companies attach area codes to phone numbers to determine call rates, especially for long distance calls. This is not the case with VoIP phone numbers because they are independent from a location.

As such, it’s possible to pick an area code that doesn’t correspond to your actual location, as long as it’s available from your service provider. But this shouldn’t be a problem with RingCentral. Unlike other companies with limited local numbers, RingCentral lets businesses choose from more than 200 area codes across the United States.

Get an area code today so you can start placing calls to your chosen locality and not get charged for long distance. In the same way, your customers could easily reach you by dialing your local number. This setup is ideal for companies with multiple business locations and those that intend to establish credibility in specific local communities.

So if your main office is in California and you’re looking to extend your services to Texas and Florida, you can get local VoIP phone numbers featuring area codes from the state without actually putting up offices in the said locations.

Use of toll-free numbers

There was a time when only large enterprises could afford toll-free numbers, but this changed along with a few advances in technology. Now, even small- and medium-sized businesses (SMB) can use a toll-free number so customers from anywhere in the US could call them without spending a dime.

You don’t want your customers to shell out money every time they contact you, right? If someone has an issue about one of your products, they can easily get in touch with your company and raise their concerns. Knowing you’re always a phone call away builds trust and loyalty among your customers.

Depending on your service provider, you can choose from a variety of toll-free numbers, including the popular 800 number prefix. If you wish, you can opt for a custom vanity phone number—you can request for a sequence of numbers that is easy to recall (e.g., 1-800-NYC-ROOFS) and makes for some solid company branding.

Use of shared lines

VoIP allows sharing a phone number across multiple devices. Calls made to that number can be answered from any other device that uses the same number, thereby eliminating missed calls from customers and the need for call transfers.

This is particularly helpful for retail businesses and restaurant chains where customer service is of supreme importance. You can leverage this feature with the RingCentral VoIP phone system.

Colleagues doing video conferencing on work

RingCentral MVP™* plans for your small business

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Standard

Message, Video, Phone
$27.99 off
$27.99
/user/month **
Everything in Essentials, PLUS
  • No limit on number of users
  • Business phone numbers in over 100 countries
  • Unlimited internet fax
  • Unlimited audio conferencing
  • Video meetings with up to 100 participants
  • Up to 24-hour meeting duration
  • Quality-of-service reports
  • Popular integrations including
    Microsoft 365, Google Workspace, Slack,
    and more
  • 24/7 support
Best value

Premium

Message, Video, Phone, Open API

$34.99 off
$34.99
/user/month **
Everything in Standard, PLUS
  • Automatic call recording
  • Single Sign-on
  • Multi-site admin and management
  • Up to 8-digit extensions with site codes
  • Hot desking
  • Advanced call handling including whisper, barge, and more
  • Video meetings with up to 200 participants
  • Real-time analytics
  • Popular CRM integrations with Salesforce, Zendesk, and more
  • Industry-specific integrations with Canvas, Smarsh, and more
  • Developer platform and custom integrations

Ultimate

Message, Video, Phone, Open API
$49.99 off
$49.99
/user/month **
Everything in Premium, PLUS
  • Device status reports
  • Device status alerts
  • Unlimited storage***

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Essentials
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Standard
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Best value
Premium
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Ultimate

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Pricing
Annually: $19.99/user/mo
Monthly: $29.99/user/mo
Annually: $27.99/user/mo
Monthly: $37.99/user/mo
Annually: $34.99/user/mo
Monthly: $44.99/user/mo
Annually: $49.99/user/mo
Monthly: $59.99/user/mo
Business phone or toll-free numbers
One phone number for calling, team messaging, and video meetings access.
Each user gets a dedicated phone number at no additional cost. Essentials edition doesn't include video meetings.
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Toll-free minutes
Inbound Toll-free minutes
Included minute allotment varies by tier. Toll-free minutes are pooled across the account, regardless of number of lines. Additional minutes available for purchase.
Learn more
Included minute allotment varies by tier. Toll-free minutes are pooled across the account, regardless of number of lines. Additional minutes available for purchase.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Unlimited calls within the US/Canada**
Unlimited calling/phone calls within the US and CA. Plus, choose from affordable and convenient international calling plans that fit your business. Terms and conditions may apply.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Enhanced Business SMS
Designed to meet latest carrier requirements and improve deliverability. Included SMS allotment varies by tier. Additional SMS available for purchase. Available upon request.
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Voicemail-to-text
Automatically convert voicemail messages into text form so users can screen messages easily and respond to the most important call first.
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Visual voicemail and voicemail-to-email
Access voicemail messages from your desk and mobile phones, email, desktop app, and online account.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Team messaging
Collaborate more effectively with colleagues, clients, and contractors with team messaging, task assignment, calendar sharing, and more. Also, utilize out-of-the-box integrations with Jira, Asana, Box, Google Drive, OneDrive, and more.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Document sharing
Access documents and files stored on your computer or your Google Drive, Box, OneDrive, and Dropbox accounts and easily share them with your team members.
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Call management and phone system
administration
Sophisticated call management, enabling you to configure your phone system across the entire company, regardless of location or device. Optimize communication with custom admin and user configurations online or using the mobile app.
Call management features include:
  • Answering rules
  • Call forwarding
  • Call transfer
  • Call screening
  • Call flip
  • Call logs
  • Presence
  • Notifications
  • Shared lines*
  • Call park
  • Intercom*
  • Paging*
*Not available with Essentials.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Mobile apps for iOS and Android
Whether you're an Apple or Android user, you can use your smartphones and tablets to make and receive calls, join and host meetings, team message coworkers and partners, send and receive faxes and texts, set up and join conferences, and configure phone system settings, notifications, and voicemail.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
High-definition (HD) voice
To consistently deliver the highest HD quality possible, RingCentral utilizes the Opus Interactive codec for audio and video, as well as the G.722 codec for audio.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Call log reports
Get a complete record of all your inbound and outbound calls and faxes. View the name of the caller, the number or extension dialed, as well as the time, date, and duration of the call.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Phone rental options: desk and
conference phones
Rent any desk phone or conference phone for a low monthly price.
Contact sales for details and pricing.
Learn more
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Add Video Pro and Video Pro+ users
Administrators can add Video Pro and Video Pro+ users from within MVP.
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Unlimited internet fax
Send and receive faxes from your computer, mobile device, Microsoft Outlook, cloud storage providers (such as Dropbox), and more.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Unlimited audio conferencing
Host an unlimited number of audio conference calls, with up to 1,000 attendees per conference. Each user gets unique host and participant access codes.
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Video meetings and participants
Hold video meetings with screen sharing, in-meeting public and private chat capabilities—anytime, anywhere, on any device.
Maximum number of participants varies by the video platform:
Premium with RingCentral Video (up to 200)
Standard with RingCentral Video (up to 100)
Available as an add-on
Up to 100 people
per video meeting
Up to 200 people
per video meeting
Up to 200 people
per video meeting
High-definition (HD) video
RingCentral delivers crystal-clear HD quality video and voice.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Quality-of-service reports
Gain the ability to proactively review overall RingCentral system health and diagnose quality issues impacting users. A holistic overview of quality measured by location, endpoint, codec, ISP, and more enables easier monitoring and faster troubleshooting.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Popular integrations including Microsoft 365,
Google Workspace, Slack, and more
RingCentral offers the largest ecosystem of integration apps in the communications and collaboration space to maximize productivity and efficiency. Get integrations for bots, AI, analytics, archiving, automation, productivity, and more.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
24/7 support
Unlimited chat and phone support.
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Multi-level auto attendant
Answer callers automatically with customized greetings, and ensure every call is directed to the right employee or department.
Learn more
Auto-attendant is a virtual receptionist service that greets your callers and routes them to employees, departments, or to any phone in the world (i.e. an employee's mobile phone, an office deskphone, or a virtual phone on the RingCentral app).
With the multi-level auto attendant feature, you can create rules to handle incoming calls for multiple office locations or language selections. For example:
“Press 1 for our New York office. 2 for Chicago office. 3 for Los Angeles office.” OR
“Press 1 for English. Marque 2 para Español.”
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Professional implementation
Get the most out of RingCentral with a portfolio of professional and personalized services, ranging from planning, designing, and implementation to project management, ongoing support, and consulting.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Call recording
Automatic call recording: Set your RingCentral phone system to automatically record inbound and outbound calls for individual users or inbound calls for departments.
On-demand call recording: Allows Users to manually record phone calls anytime using an IP Phone provisioned with RingCentral, Forwarding Number, or RingCentral Phone for Mobile.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
On-demand
Automatic
Automatic
Compatible with RingCentral Rooms™ (add-on)
Turn any space into a conference room.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Compatible with RingCentral Room Connector (add-on)
Room Connector allows room conferencing systems on legacy hardware with SIP-based endpoints (third party endpoints) to connect and access video meetings on RingCentral.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Included in plan
Single Sign-on
Users can log in to RingCentral automatically with their corporate credentials. Reduce the IT cost of assisting in password recovery and benefit from a central authentication point that securely accesses your RingCentral service from any device.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Multi-site admin and management
Get the flexibility to manage and support your branch offices based on their unique operational needs.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Up to 8-digit extensions with site codes
Simplified intra-site dialing for large multi-site customers.
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Hot desking
Allows users to log in to shared phones to access their own RingCentral extensions, voicemail and greetings, and other features.
Hot desking lets employees share office desk phones while keeping their separate extensions, greetings and voicemail access.
It enables companies to save costs of desk phones while still letting their employees remain productive.
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Advanced call handling including whisper, barge, and more
Advanced call management controls (monitor, whisper, barge, takeover) to allow authorized users to listen in on employee calls with clients to monitor the conversation, provide coaching, and facilitate discussion.
Other features include overflow call queues, user groups, and role-based access control with customized roles/permissions.
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Real-time analytics
Gain real-time insights into your RingCentral system and gather business-relevant data, alerts, and reporting metrics.
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Popular CRM integrations with Salesforce, Zendesk, and more
Bring the functions and features of RingCentral MVP into your business apps such as Salesforce, Zendesk, Microsoft Dynamics, ServiceNow, etc.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Industry-specific integrations with Canvas, Smarsh, and more
Bring the functions and features of RingCentral MVP into your vertical's business apps such as Canvas, Smarsh, etc.
Learn more
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Developer platform and custom integrations
RingCentral APIs let you create your own custom applications and seamlessly integrate business communications into your key business processes, so you can automate workflows, drive efficiency, and gain valuable insight from communications data.
Visit Developer Portal
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Included in plan
Device status reports
Monitor hard phone registration status globally and gain visibility into your devices' history.
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Device status alerts
Set up automated monitoring rules and receive notifications when devices are offline.
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan
Unlimited storage***
Store an unlimited* amount of documents, spreadsheets, presentation files, contracts, invoices, images, videos, and recordings.
*Retention period applies.
Store an unlimited* amount of content within your RingCentral app. This could be documents, spreadsheets, presentation files, contracts, invoices, images, or videos that you send as attachments within messages; or these could be the recordings of your video meetings.
*Retention period applies.
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Available as an add-on
Included in plan

Business communications have indeed come a long way from the traditional phone systems. And with VoIP tapping into previously impossible or impractical features, businesses large and small have so much to gain. Those that have implemented it are now enjoying these benefits:

Mobility

The VoIP number assigned to your business is geographically flexible (e.g., you can carry it and access your account anywhere you go). So if you have to move to a new location, you don’t have to ask the phone company to move your line to the new address—if it’s even possible—as with traditional landlines.

With VoIP, you can retain your existing number and operate as usual when your business relocates. This saves you unnecessary downtime from installing a phone line and costs that come with updating marketing materials like websites, brochures, and business cards.

Convenience

There aren’t many things more convenient than being able to contact anyone across the country or anywhere in the world at any time using any device. That’s because of the fact that VoIP only requires a stable internet connection to make a call. As such, managing calls and business numbers is also easier.

If you decide to get hosted services, you don’t have to worry about setup and maintenance. All the basic and advanced features you need for a streamlined communications system are available at your fingertips.

Flexibility

Your communications infrastructure should scale as your business grows and add more users. In a traditional phone system, this could mean purchasing new servers and wiring systems—but not when you’re using a VoIP number.

In a VoIP network, your capacity to add new users is only limited by your bandwidth, which, of course, can be expanded according to your requirements. You can add or reduce bandwidth as the need arises.

Often, your employees will need to move between devices to finish tasks. They could go from office to field and start where they left off if they have a smartphone on hand. With VoIP, it’s easier for your employees to catch up on their tasks even outside of the office.

Can your system support VoIP?

So you’ve decided that VoIP is great for your business (as it should be). But before you take the plunge, are you sure that your current infrastructure can handle the deployment? What are the specific components you need to purchase or upgrade to push forward? Do you have a business continuity plan in place?

Preparation entails some self-evaluation, which should get you looking into the current state of your internet and your existing network infrastructure. Done right, your assessment would usher in a streamlined communications system for your organization. It won’t take long before you reap VoIP’s benefits above the huge cost savings.

Internet connectivity

As VoIP relies on the internet, you need to evaluate the current state of your connectivity. You’ll need a high upload speed or pipe, which isn’t common on low-end internet services. Depending on your budget and requirements, you can choose between a T1 line or a cable internet. Talk to your internet service provider (ISP) to better understand your options.

A small business with 20 connections at most should be able to live by a speed of 75 Mbps. Bigger ones should go for 100 Mbps or 150 Mbps. If you don’t consider bandwidth requirements, your VoIP system is bound to fail. Keep in mind that how much bandwidth you need depends on the number of users and what you plan on doing with your connection.

Let’s say you’re conducting a video conference while two customer service reps are making a VoIP call and your sales head is downloading sales reports—all on the same network. If you don’t have sufficient bandwidth, it’s likely that things will feel sluggish for all of you. Now imagine how this plays out in a company of 100 employees or more.

To optimize VoIP performance, you should also segregate and prioritize VoIP traffic over regular internet traffic by segmenting the network with a virtual local area network (VLAN). The goal is to improve performance so you won’t have to worry about dropped calls, latency, or jitter. For this, it is best to consult with your ISP.

Network infrastructure

If you still encounter issues with call quality despite having adequate bandwidth, you better check on your network equipment. Often, outdated routers and switches are to blame. A reliable router is important in keeping a stable network environment while a dedicated switch is needed to ensure that the router can handle your required bandwidth.

The problem is SMBs lacking in budget usually retain their outdated equipment. Bad routers, slow switches, and other infrastructure issues like poor cabling all contribute to an unfavorable VoIP experience. That fact that latency-dependent apps like VoIP has a way of uncovering previously undetected issues makes things worse.

Power backup

If possible, connect your VoIP devices to an Ethernet connection. You may need to invest in a Power over Ethernet (PoE) switch, which delivers power and voice/data over the same wire. What you get is an efficient power provision to every PoE-enabled device, such as a VoIP phone.

With PoE, there is no need to have a dedicated AC outlet or power cabling for each device. At the same time, it allows these devices to connect to an uninterruptible power supply (UPS), which would continue to deliver power to the system in the event of a power blackout.

None of these would work if businesses refuse to recognize that old systems and devices hamper the success of VoIP. But the truth is, you don’t necessarily have to purchase new equipment to make room for it. You can opt to upgrade specific hardware like routers and switches. If you decide to replace them, be sure not to skimp.

Subpar devices translate to more costs and headaches in the long run. Then again, if you decide to get hosted services, you don’t have to worry about all these.

IP phone number: Your business’s ticket to the future

For a forward-looking company, there is little room for failure. It certainly pays to have a concrete growth plan that will guide your organization toward reaching your targets.

Will you be having additional employees over the next three years? How many are you expecting? Is that store expansion plan that’s previously been shelved finally pushing through? The answers to these questions will help you determine the ideal components of your VoIP system.

If your business is growing rapidly, it would be wise to future-proof your bandwidth or invest on more sophisticated network equipment. You may also need to spend on a bigger switch with more ports to accommodate additional devices down the line. Consult an experienced VoIP provider like RingCentral to help you come up with an informed decision.

VoIP calling to a mobile phone and vice versa
Cloud communication platform in difference devices

Are your employees ready for VoIP?

Any new technology introduced to an existing system will give rise to questions, no matter how simple it may be. Expect your employees to ask how to send a virtual fax or how to access voicemail. You can get everyone up to speed in no time by preparing a handy guide or by creating a slideshow explaining VoIP’s features and functions (which really doesn’t take much to absorb).

Knowing how certain tools make their tasks easier helps keep your employees engaged. You could have access to the most advanced technologies, but if your employees aren’t receptive to them, you aren’t hitting the mark.

A mobile user was able to call someone on her desktop though virtual phone service

Time to go live!

Now that you have the system in place, it’s time for a test run. Be sure to allot enough time to run through your new VoIP system so you can identify any issues up front and address them immediately. Consider testing for the quality of VoIP calls at separate times throughout the day to simulate real-world usage.

For example, if you discover that upgrading your internet service is necessary, do it right away. If you keep hearing echoes in every call, perhaps the wires are too long, and this could be causing the voice quality problem. Or, maybe all you need to do is move your router away from the computer monitor.

After a string of test calls, contact your provider to get a mean opinion score (MOS), which is a measure of quality and fidelity of voice calls. It isn’t uncommon for your MOS score to decrease as network traffic increases.

Implementing a VoIP phone system will help you and your employees communicate better within and outside your company. Rest assured that RingCentral will guide you every step of the way to ensure a smooth migration and a consistent experience.

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Important details and disclaimers
Spring Promotion:
25% RingCentral MVP for SMB’s
*Void where prohibited. The Offer is valid between May 15, 2022 and June 30, 2022. To qualify for SMB Spring promotional offer (“Offer”) you must: purchase a RingCentral MVP plan of any tier; (2) between one and ninety-nine  digital lines; (3)  be located in the US and Canada only ; and (4) be 18 years of age or older; when purchasing the RingCentral MVP plan (the “Qualifying Conditions”). The Offer includes: (1) a 25% discount off the standard list price of qualifying any RingCentral Office plans. Promotional price discount applies to base monthly rate only and excludes fees, taxes, additional or premium services and other charges. These terms are subject to change at any time without prior notice. You agree that the final discount Offer price is determined by RingCentral’s sole discretion, in compliance with these terms and any applicable laws. RingCentral reserves right to terminate this offer at any time. RingCentral Terms of Service apply. Early termination or other changes to the customer’s RingCentral MVP plan, may be subject to additional fees, subject to the Qualifying Conditions.