Research firm IDC suggest that VoIP can reduce business phone bills by up to 30%. But how? Let’s find out.
It’s becoming increasingly evident that businesses are better off investing in a VoIP phone system, rather than sticking to their landline. Why? Well, aside from BT switching off the landlines in 2025, cost is the second biggest reason why businesses are choosing to ditch their ISDN.
But how is VoIP that much cheaper than landlines? In essence, it comes down to the fact that VoIP phone systems make and receive calls via the internet, rather than the telephone infrastructure. Thanks to the internet, it’s cheaper to transfer call data, which means reduced costs can be passed down to businesses.
So where else can VoIP help you to reduce your business phone bill? We provide you with all the insight below.
1. Cheaper International Phone Calls
Many businesses operate on an international scale, and we all know how expensive it is to call abroad. Thankfully, VoIP can help companies save 90% on international calls. That’s pretty huge!
An international phone call that travels from your VoIP phone to your receiver’s VoIP phone won’t cost you. However, if you’re calling abroad to a company that doesn’t use VoIP, the call will need to switch over to the landline at the switchboard. That’s the bit that’ll cost.
When it comes to making international calls, VoIP providers can offer monthly contracts that include unlimited calls to the countries that you call the most. This means you can control exactly how much you spend each month.
And if you make calls to countries that aren’t included in your plan, VoIP providers charge as little as 1.5 to 1.8p per minute. Compare that with BT’s landline charges of 55p a minute, and it’s not hard to see which option comes out on top.
2. Cheaper Infrastructure
Hosted VoIP doesn’t require much infrastructure. This means you can save on things like steep installation fees, setting up a physical private branch exchange (PBX), and cabling.
In fact, the only hardware your business needs are the phone handsets and your internet infrastructure.
Most hosted VoIP providers will include the installation fee in the initial configuration costs. This can start from around £250 for half a day’s work – so the bigger your system, the more expensive the cost.
And if you think that’s expensive, the typical cost to set up a self-hosted VoIP system (where all hardware is on-site) can be in the region of £600 to £800 per employee!
The other great thing about hosted VoIP is the cost to maintain the infrastructure is low. You don’t need to factor in an in-house IT team, and fixing or reconfiguring something can often be completed from behind a computer screen, rather than having to call out an engineer.
3. Only Pay for the Features You Need
As a business, your needs change all the time. Even more so if you’re growing rapidly. Thankfully, VoIP gives you the option to add or remove call features as and when you need them.
For example, if you would like to start directing certain calls to a certain department, you can pay to set up an auto-attendant. And if you’re starting to do more work in the field, you can set up find me follow me, so calls travel through a priority forwarding system until they’re picked up.
Best of all, this is all included in your monthly bill, so you know exactly how much you’re paying. And if it turns out that you no longer need these features, you can call your provider to turn them off.
4. Cost Effective Expansion
As your business expands, you may want to invest in more lines. This could be so each department has its own number. However, BT charges around £140 to install a new line, and you’d then need to think about phone configuration and set up costs, too.
VoIP makes it cheaper and easier to add new numbers. In fact, because your phone lines are digital, you can run multiple numbers on the same line. This means you don’t need to go through the costs and aggravation of installing a new one.
It’s also really easy to add new users. Adding another handset is as simple as ringing up your supplier, having them configure a new phone, and plugging it in once it’s arrived. Hosted VoIP can support hundreds of phones without the need for expensive upgrades.
On the other hand, landlines work on a circuit-based system. If you originally invested in a phone system that supports 50 handset circuits, upgrading to one that supports up to 200 handset circuits can get very expensive.
5. Use Free VoIP Services
Yep, VoIP doesn’t have to cost you a penny. Thanks to softphone apps like Skype, you can turn your mobile phone, tablet, and computer into a VoIP phone. Skype allows you to make calls to other Skype addresses for free, and you can add Skype credit to your account if you want to call to mobile phones or landlines.
Other familiar apps that use the internet to make calls include Whatsapp and FaceTime.
So there you have it, the five ways VoIP helps you to reduce your business phone bill.
If you’re thinking about investing in a VoIP phone system, make sure you do your research.
Providers often charge different prices for the same package, so always collect a bunch of quotes before you buy.
Writer and researcher
Aimee is Expert Market’s resident telephone systems, point of sale, and field service software go-to. If she’s not writing about business products, you’ll find her daydreaming about Dorset beaches.