Introduction: Expanding your business into new locations presents exciting prospects for growth, but it also brings forth the challenge of establishing effective communication solutions. Enter Voice over IP (VoIP), a game-changing technology that offers cost-effective and scalable options for remote business communications. With cloud-based voice solutions, businesses can expand into new territories without the hefty expenses typically associated with traditional phone services.
Imagine a Singapore-based manufacturer looking to penetrate the United Kingdom market without the need for a physical presence. They require a local telephone number in London for customers to reach their sales and customer service teams. Additionally, they need the capability to make and receive calls in their Singapore offices while displaying a London Caller ID when making outbound calls. Traditional phone service simply couldn’t fulfill these requirements. However, VoIP not only makes this possible but also delivers substantial cost savings without compromising call quality. In fact, VoIP systems offer a host of additional features that further enhance business communications.
In this article, we will delve into the numerous benefits of cloud-based voice solutions, explore how calls are made and received using VoIP, highlight the unique features that set VoIP apart, and demonstrate how choosing the right vendor can enable businesses and call centers to achieve landline-quality calls while effectively managing costs.
Making and Receiving Calls
Outbound Call Termination
Inbound Call Origination
Features unique to Voice over IP
Making and Receiving Calls using VoIP: Most VoIP vendors usually offer both Inbound (Call Origination, or Virtual Telephone Numbers) service, and outbound (Call Termination) calling services. Choosing a high-quality and reliable vendor is paramount for your business. Calls of poor quality, dropped calls, and improper Caller ID transmission will negatively affect your business and lose customers. Choosing a reliable VoIP vendor can be challenging since the choices are many. Here are some useful factors to consider when choosing a VoIP vendor:
- Time in Business, for example, CallnFax has was established in 2009
- Features and Services that fit your business model
- Customer Service: We believe this is a good benchmark for reliability
Outbound Call Termination: Voice over IP service does allow your business to make outbound phone calls at a substantial cost-savings. An outbound call, called voice termination service, delivers savings of about 70% over traditional telephone service. The saving is even higher when compared with the cost of making the same call via mobile service. This makes VoIP very attractive for business, particularly in “hybrid” models with calls made from an office and from mobile phones. As long as your mobile has an internet connection, it can be connected to a VoIP service using a softphone app. This type of hybrid architecture lends extremely well to VoIP, particularly when combined with advanced features such as Interactive Voice Response (auto attendant), call queues, and ring groups. These features are commonly available in cloud-based VoIP connections and deliver seamless voice connectivity between multiple remote offices, and mobile phones. Essentially, as long as there is an internet connection, you can make calls anywhere.
Call quality is a variable that can go from awful, to landline quality. The call quality is dependent upon two factors; your internet connection, and the quality of the vendor delivering the VoIP service. The paradigm of “you get what you pay for” is a major factor, for both inbound and outbound calls. For termination services, a vendor that utilizes “platinum grade” call routes is an important component when seamless outbound communication is important. Choosing a vendor that utilizes these types of routings will deliver landline quality voice, as well as send the all-important Caller ID. A phone call with poor voice quality tends to annoy customers and often leads to lost sales. Additionally, if the connection doesn’t transmit a proper Caller ID, your outbound call is likely to be blocked. Platinum-quality VoIP routes solve both of these important components.
Inbound Call Origination: Most Voice over IP vendors offer a wide range of virtual telephone numbers and options. There are two types of service options, and choosing wisely can be a major cost saving. The most common option is a base monthly fee, plus a per-minute charge when a call is received. The monthly fee is often times remarkably low because the company usually gains its profit with the per-minute charges. These virtual numbers are good only if you receive a few calls per month. The other option is a flat-rate service that has no per-minute fees. This model is less common but is far more attractive for larger companies, particularly call centers. A call center that receives a million minutes of inbound call traffic is far better than choosing a flat-rate call origination option since the monthly cost is fixed. CallnFax champions flat-rate call options, and this is the focus of our company. Our flat-rate service costs the same regardless of whether your company receives 1000 minutes of inbound calls or 10 Million minutes.
Connectivity is a critical link in the chain for call origination. A good analogy is an unplugged telephone, or a mobile phone that is turned off. To receive calls, your business has a number of options, and each relies upon reliable connectivity to the internet. The more simultaneous calls that your business needs to support are directly related to the bandwidth that your internet connection must deliver. Further, your connectivity needs to be continuous in both upload and download speed, with very consistent data delivery. Our Team suggests that a fully symmetric, fiber-optic connection is always the best way to deliver a quality VoIP service. Getting connected to the CallnFax platform and maintaining a reliable connection is equally important. CallnFax utilizes the golden SIP Trunking standard that is accepted by virtually every PBX system on the market. Our SIP Trunks are secure and carefully monitored. Our platform leverages redundant Tier I connectivity, and this translates to minimal latency across the globe.
Getting customer calls to your agents is a strong point for CallnFax. We support auto attendants, call queues, and ring groups to ensure your customers get connected to the right person, quickly. Our Technical Team is happy to assist in setting up your call flow, and we encourage clients to engage our Team in creating and testing your call delivery.
Features unique to VoIP: Traditional phone systems consisted of a complicated system of equipment that required investment in infrastructure, hardware, and technical knowledge to deliver the same features inherent to Voice over IP. At first read, this sounds like a claim that is too good to be true. This is one of those rare times where what sounds too good to be true, is actually completely accurate. The traditional equipment-based phone systems have been phased out with cloud-based software that delivers more features, with minimal investment, and greater reliability.
Let’s look at the features and benefits that VoIP delivers:
- Remote connectivity: This is one of the most important features that VoIP systems deliver that traditional systems can’t compete with. In today’s remote work environment, cloud-based systems like CallnFax, deliver seamless, secure, high-quality connections to all of your agents regardless of location or device. Wherever your personnel is connected to the internet, they are connected to you and your customers.
For example, your company in Singapore has employees managing clients in Europe, the Americas, and in Africa. With traditional phone systems, keeping everyone connected would have required a major investment, both in the short and long term. With CallnFax, you get seamless and secure connections to all of your remote agents, whether they connect by desktop, laptop, or mobile devices.
- Call routing: Cloud-based systems like CallnFax, support call routing features like IVR, voicemail, call queues, and ring groups. Unlike traditional phone systems, setup and enhancements don’t require a technician or new equipment. These critical features are easy to manage right from our Dashboard.
- Cost-containment: VoIP systems, like CallnFax, have many advantages over traditional phone systems, and probably the greatest strength is cost-containment. By eliminating equipment purchases, upgrades, and long-distance charges, companies will realize tremendous savings in both the short and long term. These savings, coupled with the advantages of virtual phone numbers, and remote connectivity deliver real benefits for global business and call and contact centers.
Scalability: A major focus of CallnFax is scalability for call origination. This is a bit of technical jargon that deserves an explanation. In traditional phone systems, a single telephone number will support a single incoming call. When your company needs to support multiple incoming calls, you needed to purchase multiple phone numbers with “roll-over service”. This would require extra expense and equipment purchasing. The ability to increase, or “scale” your incoming call ability is critical to most businesses and particularly to call centers. This scaling is often referred to as “channels”. A virtual number with 20 channels will support 20 simultaneous incoming calls.
Many VoIP vendors offer scalable service, with both limitations and per-minute charges. These per-minute charges add up very quickly if your company receives even a modest amount of call traffic. Additionally, managing expenses becomes a major variable, since your monthly bill gets bigger with every call and every minute that you receive calls.
CallnFax offers a unique call origination service that delivers channel scalability up to 1000 channels, with flat-rate service. We believe that per-minute charges make business modeling and cost-projection unnecessarily complicated, and expensive for larger companies, and in particular, call and contact centers. CallnFax has no restrictive “fair use” policies or other fine print limitations for our flat-rate solutions. Your monthly bill remains exactly the same if your company receives 1000 minutes or 1 million minutes of calls. This cost-saving difference can save companies thousands of dollars in expenses. CallnFax offers this type of flat-rate, scalable service with our local, national, and mobile numbers.
CallnFax offers a wide range of Toll-Free services across the globe, as well. These virtual number services come standard with 300 channels but do have per-minute charges associated with them. Toll-free services shift the cost from the caller to the company, and these services do have per-minute charges.
Summary: Unlocking new business opportunities with cost-effective VoIP solutions is an achievable goal. Voice over IP (VoIP) enables seamless remote connectivity, advanced call routing, and significant cost savings for expanding global businesses. CallnFax has over a decade of delivering reliable and cost-effective voice solutions for businesses and call centers. Our experience and fluency in the VoIP industry make us an obvious choice when choosing a quality vendor.