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Archives: November 2013

Is Your Network Healthy? Maximize Your Business VoIP Performance
November 4th, 2013

When your network isn’t performing properly, business operations take a direct hit. Business VoIP call quality in particular, can be disrupted by poor network performance. Poor voice call quality, a failed conference call or calls that won’t dial through are all symptoms of an unhealthy network.

The top three things that impact business VoIP call quality are:

  1. Bandwidth delivered by your Internet service provider (ISP): Savvy business owners understand that a network needs to be constantly monitored, especially since an ISP may have the single largest impact on business operations.
  2. Capacity of your network: Network congestion is the chief perpetrator of poor quality VoIP calls. When employees stream content from sites like Netflix or YouTube, it’s likely impacting your team’s ability to communicate effectively.
  3. Performance of your network: Mobile devices also play a large role in killing your business’s VoIP call quality. Something as simple as a single iPhone accessing iTunes can hurt call quality and overall performance of your network.

ProSIP® Network Health Check is a seven day on-site monitoring solution. Over the course of seven days, the ProSIP team will work with you to collect and review your network performance data, as well as provide you with a customized performance improvement plan based on your results.

And if you’re in need of a more comprehensive, ProSIP® Total Assurance Monitoring is an on-going solution that offers 24/7 performance monitoring of your network and provides detailed insight into how your network is used by your team. You’ll be able to determine which devices are using the most bandwidth, accessing social media, streaming content and much more. You will also receive customizable alerts for changes to network traffic and a monthly analysis and performance report by a certified ProSIP network engineer.

Is Your Business Phone System Ready for Black Friday?
October 28th, 2013

The leaves are turning, the mornings are getting chillier and before you know it, Black Friday will be here. Is your small business equipped with a business phone system that can manage the increased call volume during this hectic time?

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For retail businesses, the weekend of Black Friday is one of the biggest shopping times of the season and the official kick-off to the holiday shopping season. In preparation, your company needs to ensure that customer care is on point and that your phone system is able to handle increased customer requests. After all, the last thing you want is to lose business because you’re missing calls.

Business VoIP could be your saving grace this Black Friday. With the right provider, you’ll have access to a wide range of features that will help you handle consumer demands efficiently and effectively:

Auto-attendant – Auto-attendant functions as an automated receptionist and routes all your calls for you, so you can keep a 24-hour phone line. Every call will be answered professionally and seamlessly directed to the proper department or person.

Call Queuing – Call queuing is a powerful solution for handling calls in an orderly and efficient manner. It enables you to distribute calls to multiple staff as calls arrive, and will also hold calls in priority sequence if all agents are busy.

If your business needs an upgraded phone system, there is good news. A quality business VoIP system can be rolled out quickly and easily, just in time for the holiday shopping season.

And if your business has already implemented a hosted VoIP system, you should also make sure your network will support the volume of calls that will be flooding your lines on Black Friday.

ProSIP® Network Health Check – The ProSIP® Network Health Check is a 7 day on-site monitoring solution. Over the course of 7 days, the ProSIP team will work with you to collect and review your network performance data, so you can be confident knowing that your business VoIP system is operating at peak performance. 

Setting Up Your Home Office with Business VoIP
September 5th, 2013

If you’re thinking about what might be essential for your new home office, business VoIP should be at the top of your list. Working from home offers a variety of perks – a 15-second commute to your desk, more flexibility and no chatty colleagues to distract you from your work. But in order to take full advantage of your unique work environment, it’s important to make sure that your home office is fully equipped for all your business needs. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you’re setting up your home office with business VoIP.

Make sure you have a broadband Internet connection

Business VoIP requires sufficient bandwidth. It’s recommended that you have at least 90 kb/s of bandwidth (upload and download speed) per user, well within the capacity of most home broadband connections. Make sure that your internal network, which includes your routers and switches, can handle the load too. Worried about the voice quality? You shouldn’t be – most users discover that the quality and reliability of VoIP calls are as good as or better than traditional phone service.

Consider a hosted PBX

A hosted PBX is a great choice for businesses with a large number of telecommuting employees. Since all the equipment is handled by the business VoIP provider and maintained off-site,  the responsibility rests in the hands of experts as opposed to premise-based PBX. Most importantly, you can access your extension from practically anywhere. Whether you are working from your home office or sipping on a cappuccino at the local cafe, you’ve got access to full business phone system capabilities and can maintain your professional business presence.

What are your calling habits?

If your business requires you to make frequent long distance or international calls, business VoIP is a great choice for you. Long distance business calls can be a real killer for your pocketbook. But with VoIP technology, you can access your business phone system from anywhere in the world, as long as you are connected to Wi-Fi.

Increasing Call Volume? Tackle It with Business VoIP
August 28th, 2013

To manage increasing call volumes, you need a business VoIP solution that can grow with your company and prevent you from missing calls. After all, incoming phone calls most likely equate to incoming business. While many entrepreneurs begin with low-cost services, growing small businesses can quickly reach the point where the number of incoming calls begins to swamp the system, and those prospective customers start looking elsewhere.

So what’s the solution? If your business is having trouble covering increasing inbound calls, business VoIP could be an excellent fit for you. The key is to choose a provider that offers a wide range of features that can help you remedy this scenario and dramatically improve your customer service.

The best business VoIP providers offer features like auto-attendant, which acts as an automated receptionist and can route your calls for you. That way, you can be confident knowing your customers are able to quickly and easily reach the right person every time. Back in the day, an auto-attendant solution meant big, expensive, premise-based equipment that required knowledgeable IT staff members to administer. Today, hosted VoIP offers auto-attendant solutions that are simple to manage and do all the work for you. Plus, they can be administered from anywhere with access to an Internet connection.

Additionally, transitioning to business VoIP is good for the pocketbook. It eliminates the cost of a secretary, while keeping your professional image intact. Features like professional greetings, music on hold and conferencing can help you project that big business feel.

Switching to business VoIP is a smart decision for any growing business that is looking for a communications system that can keep up with its growth. 

Incorporating Hosted VoIP in Your Emergency Kit
August 22nd, 2013

Business owners often consider hosted VoIP to reduce costs, without considering the benefits for keeping their business connected during a disaster. Currently North American businesses collectively lose more than $26.5 billion in revenue each year due to IT downtime, significant capital that can be saved simply by being properly prepared when disaster strikes. Don’t let the next natural disaster catch you off guard. Find out why you should make hosted VoIP a priority in your disaster recovery plan.

If you use traditional landline phones in your business and the phone system fails, you could lose a lot – including money, productivity and even customer goodwill. Business owners will discover huge benefits in investing in a hosted PBX phone system. The system is referred to as hosted because the hardware and other infrastructure used to operate the system are housed off-site and accessed over the Internet. That way, if your office gets flooded or you run into a power outage or the next Hurricane Sandy hits, your communication system will still be intact and running. Hosted PBX phone systems allow advanced call routing, so if your office equipment is ever damaged, calls can be forwarded to your mobile phone or another landline with virtually no lapse in business continuity.

Additionally, with softphone apps, you can maintain connectivity even when you don’t have access to your handsets. Employees can reconnect by using smartphones, laptops or tablets, as long as there is an Internet connection. Hosted VoIP systems allow you to stay connected during periods of evacuation or even during the aftermath of the disaster, when conditions prevent employees from coming into the office.

You can have peace of mind knowing that in the event of a service interruption, you can keep in touch with your customers, and your business can continue running smoothly. Hosted VoIP provides a fast and easy way to take control of a disastrous situation.

Maintaining Customer Satisfaction with Business VoIP
August 7th, 2013

A recent Forrester Research report highlights the importance of quality business VoIP phone systems to help gain and retain customers.

There is nothing worse than poor customer service, whether that means experiencing multiple transfers or having to leave several messages before getting a response. Business VoIP offers features like auto attendant, which functions as a virtual receptionist, so you can keep a 24-hour phone line. Your calls will be answered automatically and professionally and directed to the proper department, even when there’s no one in the office.

Additionally, with a VoIP softphone-on-a-mobile-device, your customers and prospective customers can always reach you, even if you’re out of town on a business trip. The technology allows you to route calls to your smartphone or laptop, so you can enjoy full access to your business phone system’s features – including integrating conferencing – from the airport, the hotel room or anywhere with a Wi-Fi connection.

Call quality is another important factor that can impact customer satisfaction. Nobody wants to deal with echoes, dropped calls or garbled speech, especially during an important business call. HD voice connections offer crisp, clear high-definition audio so you can focus on providing excellent customer support and not your phone system.

Any executive with good business sense knows that the customer always comes first. Small business owners in particular recognize that fostering good relationships is a critical part of networking and building a company from the ground up. Ensure that your customers are getting the best experience possible by investing in a VoIP phone system today.

The Telecommunications Revolution – Business VoIP Then and Now
July 19th, 2013

It’s common for new technology to take some time to mature – and VoIP technology is no exception. Let’s take a second to revisit business VoIP’s early days and appreciate how far the technology has come since then.

While many people remember the late ’90s as the time when the mainstream Internet emerged, along with dotcom mania and a surging stock market, the decade also marks a major milestone in the telecommunications industry – the introduction of VoIP technology.

When business VoIP first came on the scene, its main draw was its cost-saving potential. Operating costs for VoIP service providers were much lower than for traditional phone companies. Plus, businesses no longer had to maintain separate networks for phones and data – a significant money saver.

However, VoIP technology certainly had a few weak spots that couldn’t be ignored. For example, voice call quality paled compared to traditional landline systems. Many users complained about dropped calls, jitter (scrambled or poor quality audio) and latency (the small gap of time between when a call participant speaks and when the voice data reaches the recipient).

Now flash forward to present day.

VoIP technology has evolved into a whole different animal. For instance, HD voice quality puts the performance of old PBXs and PSTN voice connections to shame. Today’s VoIP technology meets and even exceeds conventional voice reliability. And with technology like Virtual PBX Complete with VoIP Anywhere, it’s possible to use your smartphone, tablet and/or computer as an extension of your VoIP system. In other words, you can have complete business phone system capabilities from anywhere with a broadband connection – perfect for businesses with remote or traveling employees.

The introduction of business VoIP has truly shaken up the telecoms and business landscape, and the technology just keeps getting better. Give it another five years, and you can bet the majority of worldwide voice traffic will be using VoIP protocol. 

The Benefits of Business VoIP
November 16th, 2012

There are various benefits to business VoIP, perhaps the most prominent being the lower costs and added features that you would not receive with a traditional phone system. VoIP is a great option for a variety of businesses in different industries, no matter if it’s a small business or a large corporation. Virtual PBX offers options regarding prices and plans to best fit your company’s needs. Our flat-rate plans are ideal for most companies and users can enjoy unlimited minutes for a flat monthly rate. Virtual PBX’s usage-based plans are best for smaller companies who want to take advantage of VoIP’s unique features and reduced costs but don’t use the phone a lot.

Aside from lower startup and maintenance costs, benefits of business VoIP include:

  • Access
    The convenience of VoIP is that users can access VoIP anywhere using internet connection, and calls can even be forwarded to cell phones and land-lines, making this the ideal service for those who work abroad, from home, or are simply caught in traffic.
  • Integration
    With the integration of other forms of media/communications, increasing productivity throughout sales and support for your business.
  • Flexibility
    Users can make technical changes on their own without the help of an IT support expert. You can make changes directly on your own or by calling Virtual PBX.
  • Functionality
    Business VoIP offers special features that are not available with the use of a traditional phone system. From call forwarding and electronic messaging, to conferencing, Virtual PBX VoIP offers the answers to all your business needs.

VoIP service provides you with all the tools you need to successfully connect with your clients and employees. Virtual PBX offers personalized plans to best fit your needs. With lower costs and added features, more and more companies are switching to business VoIP.

Virtual PBX Offers New Plans and Free VoIP Phones
July 26th, 2012

VirtualPBX has just made VoIP and hosted phone services more affordable than ever! Prices of VirtualPBX’s usage-based plans have dropped by up to 70% and they’re now offering convenient and cost-effective new annual rates for all plans. What’s more, if you sign up for an annual plan, you can get free VoIP phones, further reducing your phone system costs.

As always, you can still use any kind of phone with VirtualPBX – land line, cellular, or VoIP. And there’s never been any cost for PBX hardware when using our system. Now, you can even get started with Voice over IP (VoIP) technology without buying phones. Remember that using VoIP can eliminate the cost of expensive business phone lines from the phone company. You’ll save money and get better features – it’s a “win-win”.

Furthermore,  the free phones offered by VirtualPBX are full-featured Polycom Soundpoint IP 321 phones, the most popular phones in the industry. With this incredible deal, VirtualPBX became the first major Business VoIP provider to offer all the benefits of a hosted VoIP PBX with absolutely no hardware costs, making it more affordable and accessible to everyone.

“Voice over IP telephony often offers reduced costs, which are extremely important in this economy,” said Larry Hettick, principal analyst with Current Analysis. “But up-front cost of buying new phones can be an issue, especially in the small business market. This move by VirtualPBX can help reduce the barrier to entry for their clients and make it easier for businesses to try VoIP.”

Changes to VirtualPBX’s pricing plans and offerings include:

  • Flat-rate Plans:
    • Unlimited-use plans now start as low as $18.99 per month per user.
    • Annual plan customers can receive up to 10 free VoIP phones, a value of $170 per phone.
    • No activation fees.
  • Usage-based Plans:
    • Plans now start as low as $7.99 per month.
    • New plans allow customers more minutes at a lower price with savings of up to 70 percent.
    • Annual plans include up to 4 free VoIP phones, a value of $170 per phone.
    • No activation fees.

“Our new packages eliminate many of the concerns and risks related to deploying a high-quality business VoIP system,” said Paul Hammond, CEO and president of VirtualPBX. “We’re confident that these new plans deliver the highest value available today.”

New Video: Virtual PBX and VoIP
March 9th, 2012

Today we would like to share with you a video that discusses the main differences between a Virtual PBX VoIP phone system and a traditional analog phone system. Check out the video here to see why a business VoIP plan with Virtual PBX might be the solution you have been looking for.

Virtual PBX, inventor and leading supplier of hosted PBX services, started the first virtual phone system over 15 years ago.  Our service can work with any kind of telephone – analog, digital, cellular and even satellite phones, and can rack up big savings vs. traditional phone services.  But using Virtual PBX with our VoIP service can save even more.  This video shows you how.

Since its release, Virtual PBX Complete has generated tremendous demand. But that is not surprising considering this new addition gives customers expanded business communication capabilities at a fraction of the cost. In fact, with Virtual PBX Complete, you could significantly reduce your overhead, saving 40-80% on monthly phone bills!