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Finding a cheap VoIP service in Roseville
There are all kinds of good reasons for implementing VoIP, but for many businesses, especially SMBs, the main one is access to better call rates. This only works, however, if you maintain a suitable level of service quality. With that in mind, here is a quick guide to finding a cheap VoIP service in Roseville.
Decide what functionality you need to implement
As a rule of thumb, you should generally assume that your staff members should be able to do anything they can do now, but very little else. If you’re only using your phones for making and receiving calls, then you’ll probably see some enhancements regardless of what VoIP service vendor you choose. Most VoIP service vendors will offer some basic call-management functionality as part of any package, this would typically include functions such as voicemail, caller ID, and detailed call-logging.
If you’re implementing more advanced call-management functions, such as call-recording, then you’ll be able to transfer them to VoIP. You may, however, find your choice of VoIP service vendors is somewhat more restricted. Basically, the more advanced the functionality you need, the more restricted your choice of VoIP service vendors is likely to be.
As a rule of thumb, you want to hold off implementing “value-add” functionality, except when that functionality has the clear potential to reduce costs in some way. For example, conference-calling and video-calling might both be worth including in your initial implementation if they could reduce the need for business travel.
If you still have old-school fax machines, then a VoIP implementation is a good time to think about whether or not they’re actually needed. If they are, then it’s strongly recommended to move them over to Fax over IP. This is, technically, different from VoIP, but most VoIP service vendors support it. If you want to work with one which doesn’t, some vendors specialize in Fax over IP.
Define your minimum service standards
The way to keep VoIP costs low is to be selective about what services you implement. If you do choose to implement a service, however, you need to do so to an appropriate standard. In short, it should be impossible to tell the difference between a VoIP service and a service run over the standard telephone network.
There are two keys to making this happen. The first is bandwidth. It’s impossible to overstate the importance of this. Not only do you need a lot of it (both upstream and downstream), but you need it to be high quality, with minimal latency, jitter, and packet loss. If you run your own data center, then making sure this happens is entirely on you. If, however, you’re planning on having an IT services vendor manage your hosting for you, then you need to make sure that your contract specifies appropriate standards.
For completeness, you will generally be able to choose between organizing managed hosting and a separate VoIP service contract and looking for a VoIP service partner who can manage your hosting for you. The former might offer lower headline costs plus more control and flexibility. It will, however, probably require more active management, which has an overhead. Sometimes, particularly for SMBs, the convenience of an all-in-one arrangement is worth a premium, even when you’re working to a tight budget.
The second is the actual quality of the VoIP service itself, including its security and ability to comply with relevant data-protection programs. VoIP services will almost invariably be used to transmit personal data, so they must be operated in a lawful and compliant manner.
Assess what equipment you’ll need and think about how to source it
If you’re aiming to keep your budget low, then you should generally use softphones as much as possible. Your VoIP service vendor will provide these for free or at a nominal cost. Be aware, however, that softphones may not work for everyone. For example, if you have staff with limited access to computers, then a cordless VoIP handset may be a better option than a softphone which can only be used when they’re in front of a screen.
Be aware that softphones are not “hardware-free”. They generally need to be used with headsets. You might also need some additional hardware for specific functions such as speakerphones for conference calling and webcams for video-calling.
Once you have worked out what equipment you need, you will have to choose between buying it upfront or having it bundled as part of your VoIP service contract. Buying it upfront gives you unlimited choice and may offer the best deals, but having it bundled with your VoIP service contract allows you to spread the purchasing cost.
If you’d like to speak to one of the best cheap VoIP service partners in Roseville, please click here now to contact Salient IT.