When choosing a cloud-based phone system for your business, there are a number of important features to consider. From call forwarding to instant messaging, a good cloud-based phone system should provide your business with a range of benefits and capabilities to help you communicate more effectively.
Top Features to Look for in a Cloud-Based Phone System
The best cloud-based phone system will include all of the most important features. With so many bells and whistles advertised by modern phone providers, you may wonder which ones are truly necessary.
The answer to this question will depend on the needs of your business, here are the eight essential cloud-based phone system features you should be looking for:
- Call Anywhere
- Instant Messaging
- Artificial Intelligence
- Video Conferencing
- Call Forwarding
- Auto Attendant
- Voicemail Transcription
Now that you know the top features to look for, let’s break them down further to help you understand which cloud-based phone system is best for your company.
1. Call Anywhere
With “call from anywhere to anywhere” capabilities, you can make and receive calls using your business phone number, regardless of where you are. This can be a convenient and efficient way to stay in touch with your colleagues and clients, as it allows you to always be reachable. It can also be a valuable feature for businesses that have remote teams, as it allows team members to stay connected and collaborate, even when they are not in the office.
2. Instant Messaging
Instant messaging can be particularly useful for businesses that have team members working in different locations, or for teams that need to communicate quickly and efficiently. With instant messaging, you can send and receive messages in real-time, which can be a faster and more convenient way to communicate than email or phone calls. It can also be a valuable tool for businesses that need to share information or collaborate on projects, as it allows team members to stay connected and work together, even if they are located in a multitude of different places.
3. Artificial Intelligence
With AI capabilities, a cloud-based phone system can provide your business with sophisticated call routing and customer service features. For example, AI can be used to route calls to the appropriate person or department, based on the caller's needs or preferences. This can be a valuable feature for businesses that need to handle a large volume of calls, as it can help reduce wait times and improve the caller experience.
AI can also be used to provide personalized customer service by analyzing customer data and providing relevant information or recommendations. These programs may provide personalized product recommendations or offer support and assistance to customers who are having difficulty with a product or service.
4. Video Conferencing
Video conferencing is essential for businesses that have team members working in different locations, or for teams that need to hold meetings remotely to collaborate on projects. With video conferencing, you can see and hear your colleagues and clients in real-time, which can be a more engaging and effective way to communicate than email or phone calls.
5. Call Forwarding
The best cloud-based phone system should allow you to forward calls to any device, including your office phone, your mobile phone, and your laptop. This is especially beneficial for businesses that need to stay connected, even when they are not in the office.
If you are out of the office and you receive a call on your business phone number, you can forward the call to your mobile phone, so that you can take the call and stay connected.
6. Auto Attendant
An auto attendant is an automated system that greets callers and provides them with options for routing their calls. For example, when a caller calls your business phone number, they might be greeted by an automated voice that says, "Welcome to XYZ Company. For sales, press 1. For customer service, press 2. For tech support, press 7." From here the person calling in simply presses the corresponding number and their call will be routed to the appropriate team member or department.
An auto attendant can be a valuable feature for businesses that need to handle a large volume of calls, as it reduces wait times and improves the caller’s experience overall.
Integrations present the opportunity for your cloud-based phone system to connect with other business tools and applications, such as CRM software, project management software, and email. This is a beneficial feature for businesses that need to stay organized and connected, as it can help streamline processes and improve collaboration.
For example, if your business already uses CRM software to manage customer relationships, you can integrate your cloud-based phone system with your CRM software. This will allow your team to access customer information and make calls directly from within your CRM software, without any additional training.
8. Voicemail Transcription
Voicemail transcription is a feature that automatically transcribes your voicemails and sends the dialogue to you via email or text message. This is a necessary feature for businesses to stay organized and save time, as listening to voicemails is no longer necessary.
Voicemail transcription can also be useful for businesses that need to share voicemails with other team members. With this feature, you can simply send your colleague the transcription file instead of asking them to listen to the audio.
Conclusion and Next Steps
Cloud-based phone systems offer a wide variety of advanced features for businesses. With so many options to choose from, it can become overwhelming to set up your phone system. It’s also important to note that many of these additional features cost more per month, which makes it easy for business owners to fall into the trap of purchasing too many unnecessary add-ons.
In summary, a good cloud-based phone system should provide your business with a range of capabilities. Some of the most essential features include call anywhere, instant messaging, artificial intelligence, video conferencing, call forwarding, auto attendant, integrations, and voicemail transcription. The basic features you select for your plan should make collaboration, customer service, and day-to-day communication much easier.
By looking for these key features, you can choose a cloud-based phone system that meets the needs of your business and helps you stay connected, organized, and productive.
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