A woman talking on the telephone, standing in front of a window.

Business phone features can help you stay connected and work more efficiently, wherever you are.

A phone system used to be just that — a collection of telephones that made and received calls without a lot of extra phone features. Yet this definition is far from the reality you currently live in. It’s too bad that no one has come up with a catchy new term that makes more sense, but maybe you can finally come up with one today in your free time.

Voice calls are actually much less frequent now, and the phone has taken on many more new and innovative roles. Small businesses that think of their business phone systems primarily for voice are seriously missing out on many opportunities to increase productivity and provide a higher level of service to their customers.

By using a cloud-based communication system, the telephone system is not physically installed at a location, which allows employees to access telephone functionality and features regardless of where they are. Cloud-based phone systems help employees be more productive, since they are afforded the flexibility of not being tied down to their desk in order to conduct business.

Are you looking for ways to save? Here are four phone features to use today:

1. Transcribe Voicemails

People tend to ramble on voicemail (but not you, of course). When you get a voicemail, you just want to know the main point immediately.

A phone system with visual voicemail can transcribe messages into text and send them right to your email. No more standing in a hallway outside a restaurant straining to hear a soft-spoken caller amid noisy sports fans cheering in the background. You’ll have the facts when and where you need them.

2. Take Your Business Phone System with You

Say you’re leaving a client meeting and walking to the train. You’ve been tasked with coming up with a brilliant solution to your client’s problem before you get back to your office so you can demonstrate how awesome your company is. To do this, you need your best brains on the job.

With a modern, cloud-based business phone system, you can pull out your smartphone, open your mobile app, and have access to all the same calling features you have in your office, such as conference call services. Three touches of a button later, and you’re talking to your team and brainstorming solutions — all before you even leave your client’s ZIP code.

3. Use a Virtual Receptionist

Even if your company has living and breathing receptionists, they’re human. This means they have to go to the bathroom, take lunch breaks, and occasionally even go on vacation. Oh, and big surprise, they probably go home at night. However, your customers really don’t care.

By using a phone system with a virtual receptionist, customers are greeted with up-to-date information and can be seamlessly routed to the right employees to solve their problems — no matter if your receptionist has the stomach flu or is laying on the beach drinking fruity drinks with paper umbrellas.

4. Teleport People Around the World

Well, not really, but wouldn’t that be nice? A phone system can do the next best thing through video technology, which makes people feel like they’re in the same room even if they’re time zones apart. When it comes to teams collaborating on a project, in-person meetings are sometimes the best solution. Unfortunately, costs and schedules often make in-person face time impossible.

With video conferencing, you can see caller’s faces and read their body language– no expensive plane tickets or lousy airport food required. You can have an almost face-to-face meeting with people from multiple locations and get the job done.

Voicemail transcription, mobile apps, virtual receptionist, and video conferencing are just the beginning. A modern, cloud-based business phone system chock full of features can help improve communications and boost efficiency in your office.

Do you want to learn more about business communication systems? Visit Vonage Business.

About Jennifer Goforth Gregory

Jennifer Goforth Gregory is a technology freelance writer specializing in B2B and telecommunications topics. She has written for national brands including IBM, Samsung, ADTRAN, Adobe, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, Verizon, Costco and American Express. One of her superpowers is being able to translate technical speak from the experts that make products work into language everyone else can understand. Jennifer has a master’s degree in technical communication and lives in North Carolina with her husband and two kids.

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When you started your small business, you had high hopes for its growth. As success moved from business strategy to reality, it became clear that you would need to expand. Expanding can be a hard, grueling process – unless you’re growing within a cloud PBX phone system.

With plain old telephone service, adding extensions or new offices can be an arduous process that requires an on-site technician and lots of your valuable time. Because Vonage Business Solutions’ (formerly Vocalocity) voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) business phone system is hosted within the cloud, small- to mid-sized business (SMB) owners can add extensions or whole office locations to their phone system with a click. Additionally, users can order extra phones online within Vonage’s Admin Portal.

But, what if you are expanding your service to a market in another state? Not a problem. Our cloud business phone system has a portfolio of features specifically designed for teleworking. With our VoIP technology, employees can plug in their phones from any place they have Internet, so SMB owners can have on-location staff in any market they serve.

Not only does our business phone system help SMBs grow efficiently, it provides a foundation conducive for growth. Our cloud business phone system includes features that help SMB owners run the administrative arm of their office, e.g. Unified Inbox, which helps users manage their voice, fax and email messages from a single inbox in their email client. Also, we have uniquely designed our system with customer relationship management plug-ins, so your customers always receive the best service possible.

As a VoIP service provider, we’re more than just a phone service; we’re your business partner – helping you grow and growing with you.

For more information on how Vonage is helping to power SMB businesses, go to Small Business VoIP – Fit for the Fortune 500, read our many Customer Success Stories, or ring us at 1-844-324-0340.

About Chris Rabbu

Chris Rabbu is the Vice President of Marketing, Lead Generation at Vonage Business Solutions, the fastest growing provider of cloud-hosted VoIP phone systems for business. He resides in Atlanta, GA and is working on his tennis serve when not dreaming up ridiculously effective marketing campaigns.

As a small or home office (SOHO) owner, you’re on the lookout for services that help give your business a boost. One frequently overlooked service is the technology for your business phone system. As a SOHO owner, you may think you’re too small to take advantage of “big-company” communications features. But, the cloud has leveled the playing field by making the most advanced telecommunications services that big companies use within reach for small businesses owners.

What is cloud computing (the cloud)? Aside from being a buzzword, cloud computing consists of services and computing systems accessed over the Internet, which frees you from maintaining computer servers and hardware at your place of business.

Owners of SOHO offices require phone technology that caters to their budget, addresses their needs and grows with them. Our cloud phone service does all of that and more!

Here are four reasons why you should move your SOHO’s phone system to a cloud pbx now.

Small Business, Big Presence

Vocalocity is loaded with big-company features that specifically cater to those who are shouldering the responsibility of running a business by themselves. For example, our Follow Me feature allows users to have calls forwarded to multiple numbers that will ring in a designated sequence so you never miss a call from current or potential customers.

Perhaps you’re not at a stage where you can hire a receptionist, but you still need one. Vocalocity’s virtual receptionist feature is available to give your business a professional, front-office presence – and it will never call in sick.

Never Lose Service

Plain old telephone service is vulnerable to natural disasters, meaning you can lose telephone service for hours, days or even months in the wake of a major storm. Having your business phone system hosted in the cloud means the conduit to your customers is never interrupted because of power outages or natural disasters. With the cloud, your phone system is protected from nature’s elements.

You Want to Grow – Efficiency is Key

As you watch your business grow, you will need to add staff and offices to accommodate the success. Having your business phone system hosted in the cloud means you can grow as easy as one, two, click.  You can easily add extensions with the click of a mouse, avoiding the hassle of having a telephone servicer come out to your office. And, you won’t have to experience any downtime because the extensions are made available immediately.

You Have Enough to Think About

You are trying to grow a business, and we understand how much energy that takes. Vocalocity’s customer service team is here to support your business phone system so you can focus on other parts of your business. Additionally, we have a dedicated customer support landing page on our site to offer answers to your questions or help you with your system 24/7.

Moving your business phone system to the cloud gives you the tools you need to help your company succeed and grow. Are you ready to make the switch?

About Aaron Charlesworth

Aaron oversees all marketing and product management activities for the company and is an accomplished executive with deep technology marketing experience. He has a proven track record in lead generation, planning and product management, qualitative and quantitative research, search engine optimization, and creative collateral development.

From communications services to other crucial business needs, cloud technology is becoming an increasingly integral component of businesses’ day-to-day operations.

There’s a lot of thinking, strategy and technical design that goes into delivering a mission-critical cloud service like Vocalocity’s. Our Chief Technology Officer, Jonathan Alexander, offers some background on the tech behind the solution in the article “Designing business-critical applications in the cloud,” featured in the popular ECN Electronic Component News magazine.

In the article, Jonathan discusses a new generation of cloud system design patterns and best practices that are being used for communications services, as well as other popular cloud platforms, including Amazon, Google and Microsoft.

Explore the inner workings of cloud technology now.

About Aaron Charlesworth

Aaron oversees all marketing and product management activities for the company and is an accomplished executive with deep technology marketing experience. He has a proven track record in lead generation, planning and product management, qualitative and quantitative research, search engine optimization, and creative collateral development.

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