Home business VoIP can save small home-based businesses money with carefully-constructed home business VoIP plans. VoIP is cheaper and more efficient for all parties, especially small businesses.
Benefits of VoIP for Home Business
Let's face it: you pay a lot for communication. Cell phone, Internet, telephone, and cable TV all easily add up to more than $150 for a home. If you have a home office or home business, you are the sole recipient of your clients' communications.
Telecom companies offer bundles of landline phone, Internet, mobile phone and cable TV, but, overall, the bundle doesn't save that much money. You will still pay around $40 for your phone service. VoIP phone service, on the other hand, is more efficient and less expensive (because VoIP is more efficient and less expensive than traditional landline phone), allowing providers to lower their prices in a competitive market.
Reducing costs for your small business is especially important in the current economy. You may think VoIP is just another cost, but because VoIP uses Ethernet cables and Internet Protocol, it saves you from the entire system of narrowband wires in your home.
If you make international or long distance calls from your home office, really consider VoIP service. International rates are much cheaper with VoIP. Long distance phone calls within your country cost the same as local calls.
Business VoIP Features
With home business VoIP solutions, you get many features that big businesses have. Fax lines are often included, among other features.
- auto attendant for call routing, forwarding, etc
- conference calling
- caller ID
- call waiting
- find me/follow me
Home phone service and home business phone service
If you're working at home, you need a business phone line. VoIP business service usually comes with an auto attendant, which can make your home office look that much more professional.
Because VoIP providers protect their networks, unlimited plans have a "fair use" cap. If you use a residential phone service plan for business purposes, which will likely use many more minutes than a traditional residential user might use, a service provider can penalize you with fees and a more expensive plan upgrade.
Unfortunately, it's difficult to navigate telecom company policy to determine how to combine home business and regular home phone service. Your easiest route is to buy two lines, one business and one residential, under the same account.
ViaTalk can do this, for about $70. Let's say you want Business Unlimited ($42.95/month), residential VT_Unlimited ($16.95/mo), and a fax number ($9.95/mo). You'll probably have to custom order the two packages. However, ViaTalk comes with a free second line via an extension in all packages, so you may be able to use that to your advantage.
Alternatively, you can try a specific home office type of plan. Nextiva inTALK has one plan with no auto attendant for $19.95/mo (or at a discount for $195 annually). You might be able to get an extra phone number and a fax number if you call for a custom order.
Compare to a 2-line landline setup: AT&T local for 2 lines ($50) and long distance for 2 lines (basic, $50). Even with two VoIP packages, one business and one residential, you can save money on your phone bill.