By Emma Lewis, bOnline
The landline switch-off is coming! This means many small businesses, sole traders and freelancers are now looking to make the jump to VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol). But every penny counts these days and shaving any money off your VoIP bill is obviously worth doing. Here are some cost-saving tips:
Research and compare different VoIP service providers to find the most cost-effective solution for your business needs. Make sure to look for providers that offer packages tailored to the size and requirements of small businesses in particular.
bOnline specialises only in small and micro-businesses and start-ups. They will also set up your new VoIP digital phone system for you remotely so no techie knowledge is needed by you and no engineers will turn up at your home or workplace.
We’ve recently put together an article called What Makes a Good VoIP Provider? that you might find helpful here.
Choose The Right Plan
Go for a VoIP plan that actually meets the communication needs of your small business. After all, no two businesses are the same and there’s no point in paying for features you don’t need. Some providers (like bOnline!) offer VoIP plus broadband bundle packages which could save you some decent money too. Their contracts are also only 12 months long, for better flexibility. Some providers only offer longer contracts at 18 or even 24 months long. These might be fine for bigger companies, but many small businesses prefer the shorter option.
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Regularly Review Bills
Regularly review your VoIP bills to identify any discrepancies or unused features. If you spot anything amiss, get it sorted promptly to avoid overpaying.
Choose a Cloud-based VoIP Solution
Most VoIP systems now are cloud-based, but double check before making the jump. Cloud-based systems (like those offered by bOnline) can be accessed from any internet-connected device, including your smartphone, laptop, PC or tablet.
Although they’re super secure, anyone can log in who has the right log in details, so no need to pay for local hosting or extra hardware. Your team can even just use their own devices, again helping to save your business money.
When negotiating a better rate on your VoIP contract, begin by researching market prices and understanding the value of the service you’re receiving. Be clear about your requirements, usage patterns and any potential alternatives out there. You may also be able to negotiate a better price simply because you’re a loyal customer.
Don’t forget to also check out any voucher codes or promotions. And of course, don’t forget to read the small print!
Optimise Bandwidth Usage
Make sure your internet connection is optimised for VoIP to avoid dropped calls or poor call quality. We strongly recommend using fibre broadband rather than standard broadband, as it means more bandwidth, so more people can be online calling, streaming or video calling at once.
If you go for broadband with less bandwidth, i.e. standard broadband rather than fibre – you may well find there are lag or buffering issues. This doesn’t look great and could ultimately annoy your customers.
To effectively train your staff in using VoIP, start by covering the basics of VoIP technology, its advantages, and key features. Provide hands-on training with practical demonstrations, emphasising essentials such as making and receiving calls, setting up voicemail, and using collaboration tools. It’s also worth creating user-friendly documentation or guides that your team can refer back to, and offer regular follow-up sessions.
Explore Government Incentives
Check if there are any government incentives or subsidies for adopting VoIP technology. Some regions may offer financial assistance to businesses looking to switch to more modern communication solutions. A good place to start is your local council, or the Gov.uk website.
Ready to Test Out VoIP For Free?
There’s no better way to test out everything a new digital phone system has to offer than a free trial. Right now bOnline is giving the chance to sign up for a totally free 7-day trial via their website. There’s no commitment and no credit card details needed so you’ve literally got nothing to lose.
With the landline switch-off coming next year, time is running out! Don’t let your business be left behind.