When you think about phones, most people just think about land lines or cell phones. However, there is a lot more that goes into business phone systems than just a distinction between landline and cell phones. Here is a basic breakdown of the newest phone system configuration options that you can choose between as a small business.
IP Phone System
IP stands for internet protocol. An internet protocol phone system transmits data through packets via the internet instead of through circuits like a traditional phone system does.
Most IP phone systems can also integrate with your computer system at work. That means that you can answer calls, see who called, and transfer messages easily over to your computer message center from your phone. IP phone systems also allow you utilize common phone features such as a single line that has multiple phone numbers associated with, call forwarding and messaging.
You will make your phone calls with a regular office phone; but your phone will be connected to the internet instead of the phone line in your office.
Cloud-Based Phone Systems
Cloud-based phone systems are a little different than IP phone systems. IP phone systems are still tied into the physical infrastructure that your business uses to access the internet. Cloud-based phone systems are tied to the company who supplies your phone systems servers. They are not connected to your physical internet connection in your office.
With a cloud based system, you can use your phone anywhere that you have internet. Additionally, all the features of your phone system will be accessible through an internet-based portal. That means you can make calls, listen to messages, review missed calls, and conduct multi-party calls anywhere that you have an internet connect and can get onto your cloud-based phone system account.
You can also customize phone options for each individual person in your business. For example, if only one or two of your employees need to be able to make multi-party calls, you only have to pay for and enable that feature on those specific employee's lines. Cloud-based phone systems allow for a lot of customization.
Wireless Based Phone System
A wireless based phone system allows you to have phones in your business area that do not need to be attached directly to the wall or be plugged in in order to work. Employees can carry phones around with them at your business, much like they would with a cell-phone.
The biggest difference between a wireless based phone system and cell phones is that wireless based phones only work as long as they are within range of the receiver. This works well if you want a way to quickly communicate with employees across your business area and you need employees to be mobile but with access to a phone within the boundaries of your business site.
IP, cloud-based and wireless-based phone systems are the three latest phone systems that your small business can use. Talk to your phone provider about what system would work best for your specific business needs.