Things to Consider When Selecting a VoIP Provider
The following are very important factors to consider when you are selecting a Voice over IP provider. Educate yourself and be informed before you choose.
A VoIP provider can save you up to 75% on your telephone/long-distance expenses. There are much Voice over IP providers out there so it will benefit you from shopping around. Unlimited calling packages can range from $19.95/month to as high as $54.95/month. Usually, the lower-priced providers have more customers and are able to offer the service at a lower price due to a lower overhead per subscriber.
VoIP Product Features:
Not all VoIP providers are created equal. Voice over IP offers a great value to the consumers because of the drastically reduced long-distance costs and inexpensive local phone service with many enhanced features. Some providers offer more features than others. Features like Call Waiting, 3 Way Calling, etc. are usually included in the VoIP monthly cost where as traditional phone companies will charge up to and above $5/month per feature. When shopping for a business phone service provider, be sure to compare VoIP providers by features and monthly price.
Keeping Your Number:
Some providers allow you to transfer (port) your current phone number to the VoIP services and some providers do not. It is not recommended to switch your home number to VoIP phone services immediately. It is recommended that you try out the service and see if you are satisfied before requesting that your current number be switched. Keep in mind that if you have DSL service, you must retain a phone number with the service provider of the DSL because the DSL service is provided over that telephone line. If you want to get rid of your current phone company altogether, then we suggest you use a Cable Internet Service Provider.
Most Voices over IP carriers offer E911 service, but not all. Check if the Voice over IP provider offers E911 because it is not a given. If the VoIP business phone services provider does not offer E911, we suggest you either have a cell phone or a traditional landline to use in case of an emergency. (Note: It is also important to point out that if you take your VoIP phone when traveling, E911 has no way of knowing where you are when you call 911 if you are away from the registered address.)
International Calling: If you make a lot of international calls, you will want to do a lot of research on International Rates as they vary by provider. There are a few carriers that offer unlimited calling to certain countries.
Since VoIP is a relatively new product, most all VoIP providers will offer a free money-back guarantee. Be sure to check with each provider as we have seen the money-back guarantees range from a 14-day to a 30-day money-back guarantee. (Note: Be sure to keep the original packaging that your equipment came in just in case you need to send it back)
This is only a shortlist. There are many things to consider when choosing a VoIP phone service provider. An educated consumer generally results in a satisfied consumer.