Why Use VoIP for Your Small Business?

VoIP is an up and coming internet-based communication method. Often touted as a replacement for traditional land telephone lines, VoIP’s many features beyond traditional voice calls are making it the choice for many small businesses.

Businesswoman making VoIP call

What is VoIP?

VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, is a technology developed to allow users to place voice and video telephone calls over IP networks. The technology was developed to allow users to make phone calls from remote places in the world and is rapidly becoming the preferred type of telephone network for small businesses across the world.

To use VoIP you need either a handset specifically designed for the protocol, or software for your computer.…

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Desk Phones Vs. Softphones – Which one is better?

Desk phones are going out of trend. In fact, most of the decision makers have already migrated to soft and VoIP phones according to recent Frost & Sullivan survey.

An Executive using VoIP

Softphones are more interactive, responsive and offer better productivity. It is hardly surprising why many firms in first world nations have switched to softphones and left PBX-based phone behind.

So what should you pick?

Here are some of points to consider before you make a decision.

Upfront Costs

A mid-grade, voice only desk phone costs nearly $100. Add video calling and other perks and the cost goes well beyond a hundred bucks.…

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What Is Great Customer Service and How Can It Help Your Small Business?

What Is Great Customer Service and How Can It Help Your Small Business?

By definition, customer service is what you offer an individual before, during and after a transaction. While this concept seems simple enough, truly exceptional customer service is getting harder to find. Why? Perhaps it’s because stellar customer service is an experience that not only gets customers from point A to point B, but enhances the overall level of customer satisfaction – an idea that can seem mind-boggling to some.

If you ask any virtual receptionist, however, she’ll tell you that offering quality customer service is no harder or more time-consuming than what you already do. The difference is that the personal connection you make with prospective customers adds value to your brand.…

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Achieving The Right Balance In Employee Interaction

employee interaction

Operating a business, no matter which industry you enter, is vastly competitive. It comes as no surprise then that small business owners are especially critical of how productive their employees are. Low productivity is bad for business, we don’t need to be rocket scientists to figure that out.

One of the most common (and most obvious) reasons why there is a decrease in productivity is employee interaction. In a dog-eat-dog world, there’s still such a thing as too much and too little and both can result in loss instead of profit. Striking the right balance is crucial in ensuring that productive time is exactly what it should be: productive.…

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Reaping the Soft Benefits of Email Marketing

In my previous article, Making Money: The Economics of Email, I discussed the customer acquisition cycle and how email marketing fits nicely into that effort, acting as the grease to speed the process along. Email has direct financial benefits, but there are also a number of other benefits that are difficult to track. For example, if your logo appears in an email, you might not see sales from people who drove right over to your store to make a purchase, but it might make your website seem more familiar to a visitor who has seen the email, and that might make her more comfortable making a purchase at a later date.…

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Business and IT – Adversaries or Partners?

business relationships with ITDoes your company’s Information Technology area act more like competitors rather than partners with the business?

A poor relationship with IT can be extremely detrimental to the efficiency, productivity and cost-effectiveness of your organization.

Watch for some of these warning situations:

“¢ Everyone knows HR cuts payroll checks, and finance pays vendors. IT doesn’t always have the opportunity to regularly show its value and can be taken for granted. People don’t want to talk until something is broken, or frustration has mounted to the point of eruption. IT is regularly in a reactive mode.

“¢ IT helps make operations more efficient, but change in organizations can be stressful and can create uncertainty.…

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The “Secret” Customer Service Weapon for Small Technology Companies

customer service telephone communicationsTechnology companies are, unfortunately, almost as well known for having poor customer service as they are for their actual products.   Why is that?

Small business expert Anita Campbell cited poor customer service for web apps as one of three key issues that needs to be overcome before cloud apps can become ubiquitous in small businesses.   Shame on us web software companies for allowing an easy-to-fix item like this onto the list!

This truth stings quite sharply, for a couple of reasons:

1.           It’s true

2.           Most cloud app companies are small companies (not large ones)

Crappy customer service is almost expected from large companies – in software, and beyond.  …

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Expanding On The Grapevine Method

communication with consumersThe small business world is collectively holding their breathe in anticipation for what could possibly happen with the health care reform bill.   Till that time comes to pass, it is all about communications.

All business sizes rely on the classic concept of communication. The aim of communicating that a business exists involves television, social media networking, Internet advertising, business websites, and a slew of other methods.   However, the old ways are still the best ways for small businesses.

The power of communicating, via electronic methods, are well-documented to hold new keys to success.   Businesses that have something to offer to the public have taken to the net and expanded mega empires.  …

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