Posted on March 8, 2018 by Dan Quick
Unless you were hiding under a rock, or perhaps you were out traversing the glaciers of Iceland, you probably heard about the big news we had the other week. By launching the open beta period for our new Mobile for Business, we’ve begun an entirely new epoch in business communications. Because, until now, businesses haven’t had the option to keep their employees’ mobile phones up and running without including a cumbersome reimbursement program into their business communications plan. But now that there is a truly mobile feature available that’s native to your existing business phone plan, all of that is a thing of the past. Now, the only question left isn’t, are you ready to streamline your business mobile phone use, it’s rather, have you signed up for the VirtualPBX Mobile for Business beta yet?
The Time To Sign Up For the VirtualPBX Mobile for Business Beta is Now
One of the key things to remember is that, sure, this is a beta of a late-stage product feature. That means that we’re far enough down the Product Roadmap to introduce a fully-functioning mobile phone feature to our customers. However, because there is always a small window for some final tweaks and refinements, this is your chance to participate in that last stage of development. That said, maybe there is an insight you can offer or a perspective we haven’t considered that will be valuable to your employees and to users all over the world. In order to bring the absolute best experience to the VirtualPBX Mobile for Business feature, we’d love to have your input. However, as much as your two cents would be worth their weight in gold (too many currency metaphors?), we have to inform you the window of opportunity is closing very soon. We’ve gotten a great response to the beta period for Mobile for Business and have a few more slots to hand out, but they’re not going to last much longer. So unless you’ve already signed up for the VirtualPBX Mobile for Business beta, your last chance to do so is in the next two days.
What You Need to Know About the VirtualPBX Mobile for Business Beta
Everything about how the VirtualPBX Mobile for Business feature works is available on the beta sign-up page, but we wanted to underscore some aspects of it again here. First and foremost is the fact that this is a mobile data opportunity for your employees that is operated across the lightning-fast nationwide 4G LTE network that you’ve probably already relied on for your personal use. What’s different is that all data and service are provided by VirtualPBX so your use, be it over VoIP or mobile, is all managed under one roof. That means that all of the same device and extension management that you’ve come to expect from your Dash phone plan is going to extend to the mobile phones you can add through this feature. Second is that you’re going to have the same type of freedom in device selection that you can expect from most modern personal mobile phone plans including the opportunity to begin using texting for business as well. This means that basically any unlocked phone from the past two years will be compatible with the Mobile for Business feature. And finally and perhaps most impactful for the purposes of your business, this is not anything like a personal mobile phone service. That’s because this is a business-first and business-only mobile phone system. As a result, there will be no throttling or battery drain due to running over the top applications like a softphone because the phone service operates directly over the 4G LTE network and so isn’t sapping data just to make a phone call.
That should be enough to whet your appetites for a mobile feature on your business phone plan, but if you still want to know more, you can head over to the VirtualPBX Mobile for Business beta sign-up page. Also, while you’re there, ahem, you can also sign-up. All kidding aside, though, the chance to participate in the beta and put your mark on the biggest thing in business telephone service since the first cloud-based telephone service won’t be here forever. So sign up now, and let us know what you think!
Posted on February 27, 2018 by Dan Quick
We have some pretty big news, and it might be best if you were sitting down for the moment. Actually, because you’re reading this online, there’s a good chance that you are seated, but it’s best to make sure. Anyway, today we’re launching the all-new Dash Mobile Feature for our popular Dash Business VoIP Plans! This is a massive step forward that we announced online this morning and one that represents a culmination of a mountain of work on the behalf of everyone at VirtualPBX from the engineering teams to the operations and legal teams. Because this is the beta testing period of the all-new Dash Mobile Feature, in this blog we’ll take a high-level look at the bigger implications of what this development means.
How the New Dash Mobile Fits Into Dash
Answering this question is very much in-line with some of the most compelling benefits of the new Dash Mobile Feature. First is to understand that we are the sole operators of the mobile platform over the Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) radio transmitter network. That means that we will be providing and selling the data access to the mobile phones on the network and that they will all be managed under a single Dash account. Because we’re now able to operate a purely mobile experience as part of the overall functions of a Dash VoIP Plan, we can treat it very much like any other premium option like Salesforce CRM Integrations or Inbound Call Recording. No matter how any one of our customers’ accounts is comprised, they only ever have to worry about one single, clearly itemized monthly statement rather than fussing around with expense reports and reimbursements for employees who use a personal cellular network. Plus, considering we’ve always valued employee freedom when it comes to device selection, we’re employing a simple SIM card system for importing new mobile phones into the service. There are some slight restrictions like the phone needs to be paid off and manufactured within the past couple of years, but they’re also common to what a person expects when they want to transition their mobile phone across different providers. We’re also going to be providing mobile phones directly to our customers as a compliment to our list of recommended hardware, but those items won’t be available until after the beta testing period is closed. For a complete list of the device restrictions and needs, you can look at the entire run-down on our Dash Mobile Feature page.
What Does New Dash Mobile Mean For Users?
Um, is it too broad to answer with the reply, “Everything?” because that’s really what will change for the better when companies decide to move forward with a mobile strategy directly from VirtualPBX. All kidding aside, there are several key advantages to adopting a mobile phone plan from Dash.
- Data Security One of the most commonly utilized channels that hackers use to access sensitive company data is not by “storming the front gates,” so to speak, but rather by first compromising an employee’s point of access. By using the new Dash Mobile Feature you completely eliminate the possibility of a weak access point because every VirtualPBX VoIP plan utilizes the industry’s most stringent security protocols.
- Device Management Additionally, because the mobile feature isn’t a separate platform but rather one that is managed under a company’s existing Dash VoIP plan, that means the management and visibility of mobile are just as simple as with every other extension or device. The simple and clear oversight helps admins make decisions affecting their network based on actionable and irrefutable data.
- Account Simplicity Fewer vendors, fewer expense reporting, and zero reimbursements all contribute to a categorical improvement in operational efficiency. Because all mobile data, devices, and minutes will be included in the standard usage statements that VirtualPBX customers already receive, the slick interface of Dash extends to the streamlining of managing the overall unified communications of your entire company, too.
What’s Next from the Dash Mobile Feature?
We’re always keen to share some of our most exciting developments on our VirtualPBX Product Roadmap, so there’s an idea of what’s to come always available there. Because the new Dash Mobile opens up our users to a wide new world of, well, mobility, we can certainly point to a few key updates. Specifically, you know that by introducing a mobile feature and by providing our own mobile data plans to users that texting over VoIP isn’t far away. However, remember that this is the new Dash Mobile Beta Period, so we’re keeping an open mind as to what we will be building and editing based on pending feedback from our beta testers. And with that in mind, we want to reiterate that participating in the beta testing period is limited to a set amount of organizations, so you’ll want to Sign Up Now to get in on it.
Because we’re always so inspired by our core users who frequently participate in these beta test periods, we’d like to remind you as well that the VirtualPBX Product Roadmap is always open to your feedback and we regularly conduct similar exercises to this mobile one. And if you have anything to add, feel free to do so there or on Facebook and Twitter, too. In the meanwhile, make sure to get in on the new Dash Mobile beta and take your work with you anywhere!
Posted on February 22, 2018 by Dan Quick
We live in a pretty amazing time, don’t we? It used to be that when local businesses needed to adopt a digital component to their operations they would have to search for highly specialized talent to get the job done. Now, however, all of the online business management tools small or young businesses need to succeed are just a few clicks away. Technology has been democratized to a point that opening a business’ digital operations is easier now than ever. Want to build a website but don’t know how to begin? Companies like Wix have a free website builder that is glossy and simple enough for even me to use. Okay, what about generating sales off of your new online footprint with an e-commerce portal? The folks at Shopify have you covered with inexpensive and wildly simple e-commerce templates that can have you up and running in literally only a few minutes. All of these increases in the accessibility of the tools to create and improve an internet business are terrific, but they do nothing to help a company get top billing when customers begin looking for them. Getting listed on Google and other search engines is admittedly, far more complex of a topic than can be covered in a single blog post. There are a few easy steps to drastically improving your business’ visibility, though, and they all have one simple element in common. Specifically, getting listed on Google with a local business telephone number is the single most effective way to get started, and we’ll tell you why.
How to Begin Getting Listed on Google
One facet of the overall Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy for companies should be to secure and manage their own Google Business Listing. Having a Google Business Listing is simple and free and only requires a handful of pieces of information. One of those items of information, however, is not something that people need in order to build their digital footprint. Specifically, having a local business telephone number is essential to be considered a verified business and therefore one that can be promoted through Google’s local search. But because having a local business phone number isn’t required to build a website or communicate through an e-commerce portal, not every new venture out there considers it essential. Often times, businesses that use the simple and free or low-cost tools available to them to open their online operations don’t know where to look to get a local business telephone number so they resort to inquiring with their local telephone provider. Acquiring a telephone number from an older, legacy telephone service provider can be a very costly endeavor, and that’s why so many companies opt to use their personal numbers instead. It doesn’t have to be that way.
Getting a Local Business Telephone Number to Boost Your Google Listing
To really take advantage of the new algorithms in the Google Search platform that are beginning to favor mobile search behavior, you will absolutely need to have a local business telephone number. But acquiring a telephone number just to have it is pointless if there aren’t any associated business communications services that accompany it. That’s why most savvy businesses that value cost-savings and the increased access to advanced features previously only reserved for larger corporations are turning to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) to satisfy their business telephone needs. Just like anything else, though, not all VoIP plans for businesses are created equal and many of them may lure users in with low face value but that end up saddling them with hidden fees and charges. This is definitely not what the democratization of technology should look like, so don’t be fooled by that. Instead, take a look at the award-winning Dash VoIP Plans from VirtualPBX. Each Dash Basic, Pro, and Unlimited account comes with at least one free business telephone number included and you can choose from a databank of hundreds of thousands of options. Also, getting the business telephone number you need to boost your Google listing by choosing VirtualPBX also gets you dozens of advanced, enterprise-grade features that normally come with a surcharge on other plans. And while some people may expect that they would sacrifice quality service in exchange for such a wealth of options, Dash doesn’t play that game, either. Every Dash Plan is backed by a no questions asked 30-day money back guarantee along with the industry’s most awarded Customer Support team that is available 24/7, 365 days a year.
Get Started Today
One of the common threads of both the internet economy and the tools that are used to build it is immediacy. Customers want goods and services as soon as they’re ready to buy and companies need to reduce the length of time it takes to get them what they want. The best tools available to accomplish this don’t just come quickly, but with quality and repeatable positive outcomes. Getting a local business telephone number from a Dash Plan is as swift as it is effective. And with an industry-leading 99.999% operational uptime, multiple redundant servers, and that killer Customer Support we mentioned to back it up, you have the confidence you need to know you’re getting the best from your new cloud-based business phone service. Plus, with the free local business telephone number that comes with your account, you know you’re also getting listed on Google more prominently than you would have with just a website alone. So don’t delay in getting started with your new Dash Plan, and begin boosting your sales along with it.
Posted on February 16, 2018 by Dan Quick
Every industry is plagued with some of the same types of problems. For many technologies, one of those problems is the proliferation of wonky, confusing jargon, and the telecom industry is certainly no exception. With such an advanced set of features and functions increasingly available to employees through the advances in the telecom engineering infrastructure, surely there will be some terms and phrases that are a little more hardcore than the average person is able to comprehend. This doesn’t have to be the case. However, because it’s not an uncommon issue, today we wanted to take a moment to review the differences between two commonly confused terms that aren’t interchangeable and represent distinctly different functions for a telephone system. Specifically, today we’re discussing the difference between transfers and forwards in relation to our award-winning Dash Plans.
Difference Between Transfers and Forwards: Transfers
Call transfers are unique in that they can only occur once a call has been connected. Transferring calls refers to the moment when an employee is on a call, and the caller on the other end needs to speak with another employee. That can be for any one of a variety of issues, but the specific definitive facet of what makes a transfer unique to a forward is that it’s always an on-going call. You can actually execute an Advanced Transfer from your Dash VoIP plan in a variety of ways. One of the most popular, and possibly the fastest, methods is to use the transfer Feature Codes directly from your dial pad. However you choose to send a caller to a different member of your team or to a different department, when you are sending caller to continue a conversation with someone else inside your organization, you know you’re transferring them.
Difference Between Transfers and Forwards: Forwarding
Call forwarding is a similar, though entirely different function in telephony. One of the first things to consider when you want to know the difference between transfers and forwards is when the call is received. Like we just discussed, the transfer is when you transition a conversation from one employee to another after the conversation has begun. A forward is different because it can occur either during the conversation using a Feature Code, or more commonly, it is a directive that occurs before a call is answered. Call forwarding is when a caller dials a number but the conversation is sent to a different 10-digit number. This may sound deceptive or confusing, but it’s actually both common and wildly helpful for thousands of businesses. One of the most popular ways to utilize call forwarding is the Follow Me Calling feature on Dash. This is when an employee knows he or she will be moving around in and out of their office throughout the day but still needs to be taking calls. By entering a series of telephone numbers to all of the different devices that employee could be reached at, the Follow Me Calling feature will ring them (either concurrently or in succession per the employee’s preference) until the caller reaches their desired party or the call is sent to voicemail. This is just one of a variety of forwarding methods, but again, the key differentiator is that forwarding can, and often does, occur before a call is answered.
Difference Between Transfers and Forwards: The Grey Area
A variety of of call forwards and call transfers are always included for free into every Dash Account, and they are useful for an ever increasing number of scenarios. There exists, however, two other areas that are similar to, though wholly different from, both transferring and forwarding. First is VirtualPBX Valet Call Parking which is a technique used to put a call on hold in a place where anyone in the organization can answer it. There is also the much larger category of call routing that encompasses a massive amount of variables involved in routing callers to individuals or departments as part of a complex network of extensions at the point of reception. The possible routing options are so vast that it warrants its own blog later, but they can be either automated by factors predetermined by the company being contacted or they can be prompted by a caller inputting information from his or her dial pad.
While the difference between transfers and forwards can seem nuanced at first, as you can see, it refers to a distinctly different set of functions for a hosted business telephone system. You can call it jargon if you want, but no matter how you label it, if you ever need help working through the features of a Dash plan, you can rest assured we’ll be there to help you through the process. In fact, we’re here 24/7/365 for you on both our Customer Support channels and on social media as well. Plus, because there seems to be an entirely different set of nomenclature for both Twitter and Facebook, you can rest assured we’ll be able to help decode your message there, too.
Posted on February 1, 2018 by Dan Quick
We often discuss how Dash Plans were designed to boost simplicity for all employees, regardless of their job function. Fortunately, our intention of democratizing the abilities of a true telephone engineer’s function by enabling everyone to harness the power of cloud-based business telephone systems is being realized for thousands of workers every day. But Dash is more than simply just a manageable interface for a complex technology. We’ve added so much more to the platform that enhances usability even further inspired by the real-life needs of our customers as they share feature requests and beta program feedback on our public facing VirtualPBX Product Roadmap. One of the newest additions to the Dash feature lineup that has come from exactly that process is the inclusion of our all-new Move Feature to our popular list of Feature Codes for intra-call management.
The Move Feature & Dash Feature Codes Explained
Feature Codes are a clever way to execute some of the Dash interface functions directly from your telephone dial pad. Though the Dash interface has won all manner of industry accolades for its groundbreaking simplicity and usability, there are times when inputting a quick command on the phone itself is faster and more convenient. With that in mind, we’ve spent a fair amount of time promoting Dash Feature Codes to our users and their adoption of them has skyrocketed. During this increase in their popularity, however, we’ve been fortunate to receive some useful feedback from some of our power users that sparked an idea for an inclusion to the existing family of codes. Specifically, the Move Feature is one that enables live calls to be sent to and from different devices with just quick touch of the dial pad. Unlike call transfers that are to totally different users or extensions, however, the Move Feature is a way to transition your own conversation between your own devices without interruption. Say you are on a call at your desk that is running long and rather than end it because you need to walk over to another appointment, you can simply press “6683” on your desktop phone and then the call will begin ringing on your mobile device. Once you answer there, the call is automatically transferred to your smartphone and disconnected from your desktop one. Alternatively, you could be on a call on your way into the office on your smartphone and, upon arrival, you need to save the battery on your handheld so you again enter “6683” and then answer the ring that is sent to your desktop phone. It’s as simple as that. Plus, because this is a feature on Dash, it comes to you with the same limitless customization that you’ve come to expect from all of our cloud-based communications. That means that assigning the devices and that work best for you (or for each separate employee) is simple and personal so that everyone has the device sequence that works best for him or herself.
Move Feature Now, New Feature Next
Adding types of functions like the Move Feature isn’t easy, or else everyone would already be able to do it on their existing phone system. But because we’ve got one of the best and most experienced engineering teams in the industry behind us, we can take ideas from the suggestion phase to shipping them to users faster and more effectively than most. With that in mind, what would you like to see added next? While we can’t promise that every feature suggestion will make it to market or will skip to the front of the schedule (we have to draw line somewhere, after all), we’d be thrilled ot hear what you’d like to see added to your phone system. Participating in the discussion on our VirtualPBX Product Roadmap is free and takes nothing more than an idea, so give it a shot if there’s something you’d like to see included moving forward. We’d love to hear from you. If not, you can still always join the conversation on Twitter and Facebook and let us know about your first time using the Move Feature and how you felt about it. We’re looking forward to hearing from you soon and in the meanwhile, enjoy the all new Move Feature and all of the existing Dash Feature Codes!