Many business owners are now switching their communication devices to VoIP because of the relatively low cost of using this option. After reading several articles about the advantages of using VoIP it is fairly hard to resist switching to VoIP. Suppose you have finally decided to switch to using a business VoIP software, the next logical step would be to wonder about what you need to secure for you to proceed to the next steps in order to setup everything completely.
For the first step, you would need to decide on which VoIP software to use. You can base off your decision from the features, or the pricing of the packages. You can also look into the customer feedbacks as well.
The Different VoIP Software
By now, you already know that there are lots of different VoIP software for you to choose from and they provide a handful of features that you can use for your business. VoIP phone solutions are equipped with the basic communication needs like receiving calls, call forwarding, call blocking, and video conferencing. It’s not really that different from the traditional phones, most especially if you are to use an IP phone. There are many kinds of VoIP phones like the USB phone and Desktop VoIP phone which can be installed on your desktop or mobile devices.
While the VoIP phones operate similarly to that of the old school telephone system, these offer more features that help you keep up with the latest demands of clients and customers like clearer calls or better video conferences. Some of these are great for small businesses while others are highly recommended for large enterprises.
There are those popular VoIP tools like Skype, Jive, Viber, Google Hangouts MyPBX, Nextiva, Aircall, Facetime, and Zoom. Each of them has their own advantages like enhanced features that will allow you forward your calls to your mobile devices, divert unanswered calls to your voicemail and edit recorded voice messages. Some of these are cheaper than the others, so you need to look into your budget and consider the inclusive packages.
If you want to get to know about the top business VoIP tools you should check out the latest reviews on business VoIP tools so you can compare their features, price and customer rating. These business VoIP software reviews will also help you look into the downside of the different software providers.
After you choose the best business VoIP tool, you should proceed to complete the various technical requirements. No matter what VoIP tool you choose, there will always be a set of requirements that you need to have. There are at least four VoIP requirements that you need, which are – enough bandwidth, choice of router, PC equipment, and backup features for your internet and your power supply.
According to Bandwidth Place defines bandwidth as the data speed provided by your network provider. A higher bandwidth will enable you to communicate better with your VoIP software. Voiptest explains that there are two kinds of bandwidth, which are the upload and download bandwidth.
The bandwidth requirement for VoIP is influenced by different factors. The first factor is dictated by the requirement imposed by the VoIP requirement. Most VoIP phones usually need at least 90 kbps to operate, but others would need a higher bandwidth to perform better. Dial-Up modems can’t provide enough bandwidth because these can only give you up to 56 Kbps. ISDN, ADSL, Cable connection, LAN and Wireless Connections are more suitable in providing a stable internet connection. Before you avail the services of a VoIP software provider, it is highly suggested that you check on the upload and download speed provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP).
Another factor that you need to look into is your overall use of bandwidth. Are there particular software that you use in your devices that eat up a lot of your data usage? CISCO shares five apps that consume too much bandwidth, one of which is your VoIP software, and then the rests are Facebook, YouTube, Pandora, and Dropbox or other online backup systems. VoIP softwares consume about 14% of your total bandwidth while Dropbox and other online backup systems hog up 11%. YouTube, Pandora and Facebook uses up about 3, 2.5 and 0.8 percent respectively. The other bandwidth consumption can be attributed to downloading of file or streaming of videos.
Once you have set up your VoIP business software, you should be able to monitor your data usage and adjust your use of the mentioned apps accordingly to accommodate the data consumption of the VoIP phone software that you are using.
The last factor you need to look into is the number of concurrent calls you need to make. Phone suggests that for 1 concurrent call, you need at least 100 kbps which can be provided by an internet plan with 3 Mbps and above. For 3 calls, the rate is tripled at 300 kbps but a plan with 3 Mbps and above can support the data needed. For 5 or more concurrent calls, you will need to have a data plan of at least 5 Mbps for your VoIP phone system to work efficiently.
Choice of Router
As mentioned earlier, your computer apps also use up bandwidth and they compete with each other along with your VoIP. Apart from the computer apps, other devices installed in your internet system that uses the same apps or uses your connection to download or backup data can also compete with your total bandwidth use. It’s easy to boot out people who are using your bandwidth by deleting their IP address from your DHCP Client table, it can be a bit of hassle if you delete someone by mistake. In order to avoid running out of bandwidth for your VoIP and the hassle of entering someone back to your system again, you will need to use amp the power of your router with additional tools.
Experts say that traditional routers can generally accommodate the needs of a VoIP system, but considering the problem presented above, unequal distribution of bandwidth could affect the performance of your VoIP. So, you have to use a QoS. This is a high performing router feature that lets you assign a specific bandwidth distribution to all of the traffic of the devices used in your system.
For the traditional QoS, you have the option to identify which traffic to prioritize, but for the relatively new ones are automated. These intelligent QoS primarily prioritize traffic from video and voice apps over file download or other apps.
The best part about VoIP phone systems is that you don’t need to have too much hardware for you to connect everything in place. You won’t need a lot cables and wirings since the connections are all wireless. However, there are still some important hardware that you need to procure for your VoIP phone to work.
For you to be able to receive calls from your Business VoIP Software, you will need to configure your phone number with that of the PBX so that you will receive the calls in your designated number. You have the option to divert the calls to your mobile device or to your PC phone. For that, you will need a complete set of PC handset and headset. These are much needed most especially if you are to use a softphone VoIP setup or an IP phone setup.
These will be used to hear the voice messages and then transmit replies. Depending on your VoIP software, you might need an ATA or an Analog Telephone Adapter.
You will also need routers. The type of router you will need will depend on your ISP. For example, if your ISP is an ADSL, you will need an ADSL router and if you’re using a wireless connection, then you need a wireless router.
Back Up Features
Having a backup system for your power supply and your internet connection is always important when you use a VoIP. It is not a huge requirement, but by securing these backup features, you’re assured that you have a fail-safe in case your system goes down.
The performance of your Business VoIP Tool depends a lot on the internet connection and we have already established that throughout the entire discussion, so as much as possible, if you’re operating a large scale system then you should have a backup ISP, one that can be able to meet the prescribed bandwidth for VoIP systems and power backup that can support your modem and your computer.
In summary, all you need to do is to decide on which software to go with, and secure the four basic requirements that we have discussed here. First is the bandwidth requirement, a router with a QoS, the proper equipments, and back up ISP and power source. After securing these requirements you can get your VoIP business tool up and going.
If you haven’t made up your mind on which software you should go with, you can read on CrowdReviews.com’s business VoIP software reviews to know more about your target VoIP providers.
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