Business Phone Service in Washington, DC
Quality telephone service is essential to the success of your Washington, DC business. A customer's initial interaction with you and your business is often through a phone call. Ease of communication is one of the most important attributes a client will associate with your business, other than your name. An excellent phone service will facilitate your success by making it easy for your clients and colleagues to reach you and get the information they are after. On the other hand, a phone system that doesn't work well can drive away potential customers and give your business a poor reputation. When considering telephone service providers, you have the choice between traditional landline service and VoIP providers. Compare and find the best small business phone service at MyRatePlan.
VoIP Telephone Service for Business
VoIP stands for "voice over Internet protocol" and represents a relatively modern alternative to basic landlines for business communications in Washington, DC. Despite VoIP's over 10-year history, it has been gaining much more attention as of late, which implies that a rapidly-expanding number of companies are saying goodbye to their old-fashioned analog service and using VoIP for their business's communication needs. Moreover, newer firms (specifically smaller start-up businesses) seem to favor VoIP. The quality of calls placed on a VoIP line is identical to those on a regular POTS line, although the calls are transmitted via the web. You'll need to test the strength of your business's net connection to ensure the clearest VoIP calls. MyRatePlan's Internet Connection Test is a valuable tool for checking the speed of your active connection to make sure it will work with VoIP.
The method of call transmission is the most significant difference between analog and VoIP service. Basically analog calls are transmitted through a wired signal, while VoIP digitizes calls and sends them across the net. Both transmitting and receiving calls over the web doesn't cost much compared to an analog phone system. If long distance phone calls are a major part of your business's livelihood, you'll notice that VoIP systems are considerably cheaper for country-to-country calls than standard phone systems. Quite a few companies also offer fixed-rate bundles that enable you to make as many calls to other countries as you need without being charged minute-by-minute fees.
Business VoIP plans may be equipped with all sorts of call capabilities to enable the seamless operation of your Washington, DC enterprise. There are literally hundreds of specialized features at your disposal, like extra lines, ring tones, caller ID, call forwarding, and many types of voicemail add-ons.
The majority of company VoIP companies in Washington, DC provide systems that are well-equipped to handle the tasks performed by businesses of different sizes. Whether you have a small-scale business with a couple of extensions or a multi-million-dollar organization with hundreds of lines, you should have no trouble finding a VoIP provider capable of meeting your preferences.
Selecting The Best Business Phone Service Provider in Washington, DC
The VoIP industry is highly competitive. Although the broad menu of choices may seem overwhelming to you at times, it is possible to leverage the competitive nature of the market to your benefit.
The initial step for narrowing down your choice is determining exactly what your needs are. It is important to know the exact number of lines you will need and what features you need to make your business run smoothly on a daily basis. Your budget will also come into play so you'll need to know exactly what you can afford. Also, be mindful of your plans for future expansion and what phone services you will need when that expansion is completed.
Information about Washington, DC VoIP providers is readily available. Take the time to research their prices and the services that they offer. Get a feel for their reputation also. Keep in mind that your phone system is the heart of your company's communication infrastructure and that that infrastructure is only as good as the company you choose. You want to go with a company that has proven to be highly reliable and service-oriented.
Traditional Business Phone Service
VoIP isn't the best service for every business, and there are many businesses that will benefit more from a traditional phone service. If you choose a traditional service provider, your calls will be sent through a PSTN, which is short for public switched telephone network. The PSTN is a nationwide network, and it consists of thousands of physical telephone lines, mobile networks, cables and satellites. Most people don't know that the PSTN was the first phone network created, and it can deliver reliable performance for any business.
The major downside of choosing a traditional business phone service is the cost, which tends to be much greater than what you'd pay for VoIP. The cost to use a PSTN service in Washington, DC can be expensive, and your calls must stop at several different locations along the network. Since PSTN is analog, it doesn't send data very efficiently over long distances.
Calls that are transmitted over the PSTN must make several stops, and the calls must flow through several different providers. The end result of this process is increased costs for business owners. Although much of the infrastructure for the PSTN is digital, the physical connections are still required, and they can be very expensive to use.
PBX With Analog Phone Systems
Most businesses in Washington, DC will be using a PBX, which is known as a private branch exchange. The PBX effectively routes calls through their office. When a business phone service is used, the PBX is what allows businesses to use several different call features. Some common available features are voicemail, call forwarding, conference calls and extensions.
When used with a traditional PSTN phone system, the PBX can be located in a remote location or near the user. Regardless of where the PBX is located, the system comes with a major drawback, which is the significant cost. To set up a complete business phone system that uses a PBX, many different hardware components are needed, and a significant initial investment is needed to get started. In most cases, this system can cost at least $1,000 for the initial components, and it will require ongoing maintenance, configuration and installation.
For business owners in Washington, DC who're planning to use a traditional PBX for their business phone service, it can cost a lot of money to expand or upgrade the system. Many of the newest PBX systems can only support a very limited number of lines, and if a business grows quickly, the PBX won't be able to provide the additional extensions needed to operate efficiently. The cost of adding new hardware to keep up with business growth can be too much for many business owners.
It's also important to remember that a PBX is like any other electronic hardware, and over time, it will suffer problems and begin to malfunction. The cost to repair problems with the PBX can be expensive, and depending on uncontrollable circumstances, a PBX might even become obsolete.