In any company, it is necessary to maintain constant, effective and quality communication. Not only with our employees, but also with our customers and suppliers. Today, many businesses have adapted to technological advances and have seen digital communication as playing an important role. However, the truth is that business telephony continues to play a fundamental role in internal and external communication because, after all, we humans understand each other by talking.
Although nowadays it is very rare to find people who do not have access to new technologies, many of them are not so familiar with how they work. This means that they prefer to use the telephone rather than other channels such as email or social networks to contact companies.
Due to the situation generated by the Covid-19 crisis, travel is limited. However, this does not mean that direct communication is not still sought. In these cases, the telephone is still the preferred medium, as it offers a direct and fast service between the company and the customer, and even between the employees themselves, as sometimes an email can take several days to be answered or may not be received at all.
Nowadays, the most current business telephony solutions integrate new internal communication channels such as video or instant messaging and also new external communication channels such as Whatsapp or Telegram.
For all these reasons, having a quality business telephony service is essential. We tell you everything you need to know to choose the one that best suits your needs.
Types of telephony for business
Before making your decision, you should know that there are different types of telephony depending on the technology used. Here are the most common ones:
Until relatively recently, it was the preferred option for businesses. However, it is associated with a physical location, that is, a conventional PBX to make it work. Voice is transmitted over wires, so the telephone cannot be used from anywhere other than where it is installed and is not very flexible. In addition, the number of telephone lines will depend on the number of wires associated with the PBX.
As additional features, these systems require installation by an expert, as well as ongoing maintenance, which can involve a high investment, both in terms of equipment and technicians.
Finally, it does not have advanced functionalities, which has made it an obsolete telephony service, and it is no longer used in almost all companies.
This technology, also known as digital telephony, is undoubtedly the technology of choice for today’s businesses. Unlike the previous one, it does not require cables for its operation, as the service is hosted in the cloud. Voice is transmitted over the Internet, so there is no need to install specific equipment or software. Thus, costs are considerably reduced, as we only need a device with an Internet connection, allowing flexible, simple and effective communication.
It is constantly evolving, and as it works through the Internet, it will always be up to date, so it does not require any kind of maintenance.
The most important thing is that some types of virtual telephony, which we will see later, can integrate new communication channels such as video or instant messaging to manage internal and external communications within the company.
Finally, it has many advanced features built in, which has made it the best telephony option for businesses.
This is a mix between virtual and traditional telephony. In these cases, it works with physical installations, although the lines are in the cloud.
Therefore, it has the advantages of both types, but the costs are doubled, as it is necessary to invest in the installation and maintenance of this equipment, as well as in the additional devices required for its operation.
Finally, the big drawback is that one part (the physical installation) becomes obsolete, even if the part in the cloud is always up to date. For this reason, it is not the most recommendable option for companies.
Types of virtual telephony and their importance within the business
There are two types of virtual telephony:
- Traditional IP telephony: these are telephone lines used in IP PBXs, which use the well-known SIP protocol. In some cases they require the installation of an IP PBX and in all cases they require the downloading of software, the purchase of specific devices (known as softphones) and complete configuration by a technician.
- WebRTC: Web Real-Time Communication is an open source software developed by Google that allows real-time communication from any device with an Internet connection. It does not require any installation, so it can be used from anywhere.
Advantages of WebRTC telephony in business
At first, both IP telephony and SIP Trunks revolutionised the world of communications. They allowed calls to be received over the Internet. However, WebRTC has been gaining ground and is now the preferred way for companies to communicate. The main reason for this is that it has advantages that others do not. Although we have already mentioned some of them, the most important ones are the following:
- Cost savings: as it works over the Internet, you simply need a device (whether it’s your computer, mobile or tablet) to open your browser and start receiving calls. By using your own tools, you don’t need to install anything, so you don’t need an operator to perform this task.
- Ubiquity: WebRTC allows you to connect from anywhere in the world with the device you have at hand. You simply open your browser and enter a username and password.
- More efficient customer service: this telephony service for businesses allows integration with your CRM and Artificial Intelligence solutions to offer a quality and professional service, improving the experience of your customers.
- Flexibility: there is no limit to numbers, extensions or functionalities, so if the company grows and you need to increase your resources, you can do so without any kind of barrier.
- HD quality: WebRTC works through codecs that adapt to the bandwidth available at that moment. In this way, the quality of the call is always optimal and those annoying echoes and cuts in the communication are avoided.
- Handle multiple calls simultaneously: virtual PBX services and call centre software that work via WebRTC allow incoming calls to be handled from more than one source. This means that there is no limit to the number of people who can receive these calls and the call is answered by the most appropriate agent.
- Multichannel as it integrates video, instant messaging and can also integrate other external communication channels such as WhatsApp.
What should you take into account when choosing the best virtual telephony solution for business?
After you have informed yourself about the different types of telephony for businesses, it is time to make a decision. To do so, you have to take into account a series of characteristics that will allow you to choose the one that best suits you.
Depending on the size of your company
- Virtual telephony for micro-companies: you may be self-employed or have less than 10 employees in your company, with a single head office and therefore a single contact number. In this case, you may need a single extension or several, but whatever your case, it is important to have a virtual PBX. Not only will it improve your image in the eyes of your customers, but it will also allow you to work from home when you need to.
- Virtual telephony for SMEs: in these cases you may have several offices spread across the country, and therefore also need different phone numbers to communicate with your employees or your customers. In these cases, call center software is the perfect solution for you. Among many other features, it allows integration with the CRM of your company, so you can unify all the information of your business, increasing efficiency.
- Virtual telephony for multinationals: A multinational company will need a virtual PBX but they could also use a more specific solution for managing their call centre, so they will need call centre software in this area. In addition, if you have subsidiaries in different countries, you will also need a local number for that country. In these cases, it is essential to have an international number in your virtual PBX or in your call centre software to attend your customers and provide a personalised service.
Depending on your telephone activity
- You make a lot of outgoing calls: these are usually companies that need to follow up with their customers. They need a business phone system that allows them to make a large number of calls to, for example, check the impact of their marketing campaigns. In many cases they require a service with predictive or automatic dialling to contact their customers quickly, easily and without wasting a lot of time. It is advisable to be careful with this type of practice as the calls may be perceived as spam.
- You receive a lot of calls: this is the case of companies that mainly offer technical support services, focus on providing quality after-sales service or are mainly dedicated to customer service. They usually receive a very large number of calls, so they are looking for a telephony service that in addition to offering the basic functionalities, is customisable with waiting queues, timetable management, voicemail… The most suitable option is the virtual PBX or call centre software.
- You are looking to improve internal communication: when you have several offices and you want your employees to communicate effectively no matter where they are, call centre software is the solution. With it, your employees will be able to call or video call each other by entering an extension code, or even through the internal chat that it incorporates.
- You need to make and receive international calls: in the case of multinationals, both virtual PBXs and call centre services allow you to have international numbers so that you can communicate both with your customers and with the different branches and offices of your business.
- You make and receive a large number of calls: this is what most companies are looking for. Again, both the pbx and the call centre software fulfil this function. Choosing one or the other will depend on the functionalities you want to have.
Having the best telephony service is essential to obtain the satisfaction of your customers. In Fonvirtual we offer virtual PBX and call center solutions that offer these and many other features. Regardless of the characteristics of your company, we study your project and we offer you the system that best suits your needs.