September 05, 2016 16:19
Published: March 09, 2017 14:46
In 2014, the United States Small Business Administration did a study on the 22 million small businesses in the lower 48. They asked one simple question of all of them.
They simply asked how many of those businesses had their beginnings in the home. The surprising part? Just over half of those businesses said yes. That means that 11 MILLION businesses started from someone’s home.
As a company that deals in VoIP business phone systems, we were a bit taken-aback by this news. We’re pretty sure that Bret in accounting is still crying.
Here in Canada, there are likely not as many home-based companies, but there are still a ton of them out there, and the question begs to be asked: what are they doing for their business phone system?
Now, don’t get us wrong, we know that there’s nothing wrong with going with the ol’ cell phone as a start. But eventually, you might get the idea that having a dedicated business phone line might not be a terrible idea. Even if you can’t yet afford to lop off a limb to pay for office space. So the question becomes, what can VoIP do for you? How can it help you? Well…
As in, there really isn’t all that much. Back in the day, installing a hard line into a home-based business was about as much fun as the flu, but nowadays, many business owners can install these systems themselves with little to no technical knowledge. And, as most of these systems are based in the cloud, there’s never any upkeep for the business owner to worry about. All of that falls back onto the shoulders of the hosted PBX provider.
The features of a VoIP system are wide-ranging and available for any type of business, and can usually be either bundled together or selected individually to suit the business owner’s needs. Things like voice-to-email, call forwarding, and doorbell can help to keep a business owner on-track without the constant interruption of the phones, and an auto-attendant can add a layer of professionality to any home-based operation.
For many a home-based entrepreneur, data is the pale guy in Star Trek: Next Generation. Analytics aren’t something that too many small business owners pay much attention to in the beginning, even though it’s priceless information. With a VoIP system, these analytics can not only be easily accessed within the system, but context can be given and understanding had at every level of the operation, ensuring that you’ll know what all those ones and zeros are talking about. From call data like number of calls (incoming and outgoing) to average call length, and specific department tracking, these numbers can only help you. Or give you a migraine. But that’s what the Advil is for, right?