For start-ups and small businesses planning your phone systems, a virtual PBX provides a solution that helps create a professional image, reduces costs and gives you the flexibility to operate your business from any location.
A virtual PBX (Private Branch Exchange) provides the equipment needed to handle incoming calls efficiently. Instead of purchasing and operating equipment on your premises, you pay a service provider a monthly fee to manage and maintain the system in the cloud.
One number for your business
If, like many small early-stage businesses, you and your colleagues handle calls on a combination of mobiles, home phones or legacy fixed-line systems, you risk presenting an inconsistent picture to your customers. You have to give out different numbers and you may have problems transferring calls or taking calls if individuals are not available.
With a virtual PBX, your service provider can give you a single number for your business. That gives customers, prospects, suppliers and business partners a single point of contact for the business, which immediately creates a more professional image.
You can select a new number for the business or transfer an existing number. That number does not have to be local to your business. You might prefer a number in a city where you do a lot of business. You can also choose a toll-free number, which can increase sales opportunities because calls are free to customers and prospects.
Access on any phone
Virtual PBX providers deliver the telephone service over the internet and that means calls can be forwarded to any location and to any phoneor mobile device. So, you do not have to buy new phones for the business and you and your colleagues can handle incoming calls wherever you happen to be working.
That flexibility is important because you may be working from different locations or spending a lot of time away from an office, visiting customers and suppliers. Instead of making special arrangements to handle calls when you are not available in your usual location, you can be confident that calls will reach you.
Professional call handling
Call handling improves too. A virtual PBX system is often compared to a telephone answering service. It takes incoming calls and forwards them to the most appropriate person.
When a caller rings, the cloud-based system answers with a greeting of your choice, such as “you’ve reached ABC Design” for example. The system then offers the caller a series of options defined by you. The caller might be able to press 1 for sales, 2 for technical support or 3 for accounts. Alternatively, in a very small business, you can offer the option of asking for individuals.
Depending on the way you set up the system, the incoming call will then be forwarded to a designated phone. If that phone does not respond, the system can be set to automatically forward the calls to other numbers until the caller gets an answer.
This provides your business with a professional answering service and ensures you do not miss any important calls.
A more flexible business
Adopting a virtual PBX solution lets you run the business the way you want to without tying your team to a fixed phone system. You can work from an office or from home, and you can hire full-time or part-time people who are based in different parts of the country. Your business will always be in contact.