CLOUD-BASED PHONE SYSTEMS FOR SMALL BUSINESS in 2022 (Updated)

cloud business phone systems
ACC Telecom

If you’re new to cloud business phone systems, the choice of providers can be overwhelming. Even if your company uses business VoIP, comparing providers can be time-consuming. Cloud business phone systems have several advantages over traditional landline phones and on-premise PBX systems, including advanced call-handling features, cost efficiency, and flexible plans.

We researched the best cloud business phone systems for you and distilled our findings on pricing and plans, features, customer service, network reliability, and more to assist you and your team in finding the ideal solution.

What is a Cloud-Based Phone System?

A cloud-based phone system is an internet-based phone service that allows you to make calls. Cloud calling is also known as a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone system. A cloud-based phone system differs from traditional analog phones in that it can store data. Traditional analog phones use copper wires or optical fibers to connect two callers. That data is stored in one or more secure data centers located off-site.

How Do Cloud Business Phone Systems Work?

Cloud business phone systems convert your calls into small digital audio packets that are transmitted as data over the internet to the person on the other end of the line. When you dial a regular phone number, the signal is converted to a regular telephone signal before reaching the intended recipient. The call is routed through session initiation protocol (SIP) trunking using a cloud-based PBX system. [For more information, see What Is SIP Trunking?]

Anyone with an internet connection can use cloud business phone systems. The following devices can make cloud-based calls:

  • A standard phone with a VoIP adapter. You can use a regular landline phone to make internet calls with an adapter. The adapter plugs into a wall phone socket or directly into your router.
  • Computer (also known as a “softphone”). Many programs or applications, such as Skype, Google Voice, FaceTime, and others, allow you to make voice calls over the internet. Discover how to select a softphone app that makes it simple for your team to get started.
  • Smartphone. To make internet calls from your mobile device, install apps like Google Voice or Skype.
  • A specialized VoIP phone. These phones resemble traditional analog phones, but they connect to a computer network rather than a phone line.

Cloud Business Phone Systems

If you’re already familiar with cloud business phone systems and know what features you want, the quick comparison table between top providers might be all you need. Those looking for more information on each provider, or who have general questions about cloud business phone systems, should continue reading.

Best Cloud business phone systems

The section that follows goes into greater detail about some of the most popular cloud business phone systems.

#1. Dialpad

Dialpad Business Communications is a cloud phone system that provides voice calling, online faxing, video calling, team chat, and business texting in a unified interface for desktop and mobile users.

Its primary selling points are its advanced built-in AI, clean and simple interface (as seen above), and overall affordability. There are toll-free numbers, local phone numbers, and number porting options.

#2. Nextiva 

Nextiva is a cloud PBX business phone system that combines VoIP voice calling, video meetings, SMS, and team chat messaging in a single dashboard. Users communicate seamlessly within the Nextiva App softphone interface, seamlessly switching between communication channels and even devices.

#3. RingCentral MVP

RingCentral MVP (Message, Phone, Video) is a unified communications platform for smaller teams that provides high-level communication features.

The provider has recently focused on providing innovative solutions and capabilities to the new hybrid workforce, particularly in terms of team collaboration. RingCentral provides virtual faxing and SMS in addition to chat, voice calling, and video.

#4. GoToConnect 

GoToConnect is a cloud phone system that combines voice calling, video communications, and messaging into a single interface. Number porting and local, toll-free, and vanity numbers are all available.

Remote or blended smaller teams of up to 25 employees, as well as current GoTo universe users (GoToWebinar, GoTo Meeting, etc.) in need of a business phone solution, will benefit the most from GoToConnect.

#5. Zoom Phone

Zoom Phone provides current and prospective Zoom users with a business phone system that can be used in conjunction with Zoom Meetings, eliminating the need to purchase a separate VoIP solution. It should be noted that it is not available as a standalone product.

Voice calling, texting, instant chat messaging, and video calls are all available Zoom Phone communication channels. There are options for number porting, toll-free numbers, and local phone numbers.

#6. Ooma

Ooma provides cloud business phone system services for non-technical users. More than 35 user-friendly communication and calling features are hidden behind its simplicity — Ooma is one of our top recommendations for ease of use.

Ooma’s virtual receptionist (the “press 1 for option X” prompt your customers hear when they call) is particularly simple to configure. The Caller Info Match tool can also import data from other platforms, such as LinkedIn and CRM databases, in a matter of seconds.

Features of Cloud Business Phone Systems

The numerous features provided by cloud business phone systems are one of their main draws. Analog phones have limited features, whereas cloud phones can add and update features as they become available. These are some of the characteristics.

Unified communications:

A unified communications solution integrates your business phone system, voicemail, instant message or chat, video conferencing, and faxing, as well as email, web apps, social media, and tools such as CRM.

Conferencing via video:

As remote work becomes more common, businesses require dependable and simple-to-use video conferencing solutions. Many cloud business phone systems include video conferencing as a standard feature, so you won’t have to pay extra for it.

International phone calls:

Because cloud phones are internet-based, there are no long-distance fees when making or receiving international calls. Most cloud phone packages include long-distance and international calling as free features.

Ring anywhere: 

This feature, also known as “never miss a call” or “find me, follow me,” allows users to receive or place calls from the same number on multiple devices. When the work phone number is dialed, the user’s desk and smartphone, for example, will ring, and the user can select which to answer. Calls can also be transferred between devices.

Artificial intelligence: 

AI pervades almost every aspect of modern life, including cloud phones. AI is being used by cloud system providers to provide customer service and perform functions such as speech-to-text and sentiment analysis.

IM (instant messaging):

Text-based communication is what instant messaging is. It enables real-time communication via a variety of devices, including desktop computers and smartphones. Instant messaging adds another layer of responsive communication and records information that can be referenced later.

Communication via the cloud:

Cloud communication refers to a comprehensive set of communication services. Telephony, instant messaging, video conferencing, and any other form of communication included in the bundle are all included.

 Call forwarding:

Call forwarding routes calls from one number to another. Cloud-based call forwarding functions similarly to traditional call forwarding. Even when it is necessary or important to direct calls through specific phone numbers, the service allows users to consolidate calls to a single line.

Auto attendant:

An auto attendant is the automated voice menu that you frequently use when making business calls. Automated directories and direct calls reduce the communication workload of business personnel. Individuals can take calls after they have been properly directed, or additional automation services can resolve issues (e.g., voicemail).

Collaboration:

File sharing, video/audio conferencing, real-time project contributions, and other tools that allow people to collaborate without being in the same room or country are examples of collaboration tools.

Voicemail-to-email:

Voicemail-to-email converts a voicemail into an audio file and sends it to an email address. This enables the recipient to access their voicemail without requiring the use of a voice mailbox. The emailed file is accessible by a broader range of devices and is unlikely to clog or exceed data limits, allowing the recipient to listen to the voicemail for as long as needed.

Integrations:

Cloud integrations enable the consolidation of multiple resources into a single cloud package or suite. Voice calls can be handled by the same service provider that handles large-scale data storage and analytics. Powerful tools are made accessible and easy to use by consolidating services through integrated platforms. Integration is a broad concept that is at the heart of almost every cloud service.

How Do You Find Cloud Business Phone Systems Provider?

If you decide that cloud business phone systems are for you, the next step is to find a provider. Each vendor will provide different features and packages at different price points, so you must determine which one best meets your needs.

Thorough research is the only sure way to find the right provider. Read reviews of various companies, see if any offer free trials, and ask other small business owners in your industry for recommendations.

What is a Cloud-Based VoIP System?

Cloud-based VoIP entails using VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) capable phones and having the call routing component handled off-site, in a data center. It is possible to have on-premise VoIP, which would necessitate the installation of a switch in your office.

Is Cloud Phone the Same as VoIP?

Cloud phone systems and Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) systems provide the same phone system functionality, and the terms are interchangeable.

How Do I Set Up a Cloud Phone

Take a look at this four-step guide to successfully create communication channels for your business.

  • Select the Best Business Telephone System for Your Needs
  • Register and Select a Business Number
  • Selecting Business Phone Structures
  • Set up Connection Redundancy and Stability 

What are the Best Cloud Business Phone Systems for You?

Consider what you require before deciding which of the best cloud phone systems to use. For example, someone who only wants to talk to a few people on the side may find that a cheaper option is the most cost-effective while still providing all the necessary tools. However, if you intend to use a cloud phone system for professional or business purposes, particularly with many people regularly, you should consider the higher-end options for the more advanced tools that are included.

Conclusion

Cloud phone systems can make it easier for you and your team to make and accept business calls than ever before. If you’re certain that cloud-based business phone systems are the right fit for your team, this guide should help you find a provider and get started. Better customer relations, as well as improved internal communications, are just around the corner with the right provider.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Best Cloud Phone Systems of 2022.  RingCentral. Nextiva. 8×8. Grasshopper

How much does a cloud phone system cost?

A cloud-based phone system typically costs between $15 and $50 per user, depending on the features or services your company requires. You can get a lower per-user price if you sign up for a longer term, such as 36 or 60 months.

Does salesforce have a phone system?

Salesforce Voice integrates intelligent telephony for a unified agent experience. Agents can communicate with customers via an easy-to-use softphone that harnesses the power of Amazon Connect, including real-time call transcription.

References

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