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Phone Systems for Small Business: A Guide to Efficient Communication

Business phone systems are communication networks made to improve information flow within an organization. Business phones need to meet different standards, as they need to be used for more complex things.

This includes countless customer service calls, communication between employees, talking to partners, call routing, and so on. Simply put, these phone systems have higher capabilities than typical residential phones.

Today we are going to talk about different types of phone systems for small business and which benefits they offer.

Types of phone systems

1. VoIP

VoIP systems rely on broadband internet for establishing phone lines. This leads to benefits like easy installation, better pricing, easy scalability, and some new features like adding a virtual receptionist that forwarded calls to the right employees.

A VoIP phone system allows unique phone numbers, enables call routing to various extensions, and toll-free number handling.

The acronym VoIP is short for Voice Over Internet Protocol and when shopping for this kind of system, look for a product that offers integrations with other systems you use.

2. PBX

Private Branch Exchange systems are fundamentally private phone networks that can be used for businesses. It can be used for routing both outgoing and incoming calls on all the business lines, and it comes with different features including extension routing, conference calls, call holding, and so on.

PBX systems are different than typical multi-line systems as routing and switching don’t happen through the phone unit directly. These things are centralized, which makes this system cost-effective and scalable.

3. Cloud

Cloud systems allow you to take your whole infrastructure to a third-party server. Signal processing and call routing are done remotely, and the monthly payments are really low. There is no need to spend money on growing the system and maintaining it. It’s important to know that cloud systems can be hosted VoIP and PBX.

Some of the benefits of using cloud include:

  • Cost-effective
  • Easily scalable
  • No need to maintain it
  • Saves money on in-house equipment and space
  • Virtual phone numbers

You can go here to read more about virtual numbers.

4. Multi-line

Multi-line phone systems work on a basic principle. They simply add multiple lines to ensure no customers are left hanging. This is a really cheap option that can benefit really small businesses that don’t get a lot of calls.

It costs less to maintain than systems like PBX and can be upgraded by adding more lines. A multi-line system comes with features like call transfers, hold, waiting, conference calls, speed dial, voicemail, and so on.

Benefits of phone system use

1. Automation

Modern business phone systems come with various automation capabilities. There are three general types of automated business phone systems:

  • Inbound
  • Outbound
  • Hybrid

Inbound automation systems allow call receivers to press a button if they want to answer a phone call on their own, or they can use other functions to perform automated actions like give pre-recorded replies.

Outbound automation is similar, but only with making calls and not receiving them. Hybrid systems have the features of both inbound and outbound systems. They can be used for making and receiving calls with various automated features.

2. Conference calls

Conference calls are simple to use. The only thing you have to do is enter the number to join a conference call. Some systems even have an inter-connected network, and they display currently ongoing conference calls that can be joined. Conference calls also save a lot of money.

Instead of having employees travel around for meetings, you can simply organize conference calls with your partners during which you can talk about all the important topics.

Not only does this save money on traveling, but it also removes hotel costs, speeds-up idea-sharing, and improves communication capabilities, you can go here and read more.

3. On-hold messages and music

Nobody likes waiting on hold. Sadly, with smaller companies, this is often an issue, as there are not enough customer support agents to answer calls. However, you can make the whole on-hold experience better for your customers by adding messages.

You can talk about your later offers, discounts, and promote products. Furthermore, you can give them tips and valuable advice on how to use products, or how to quickly explain to customer support reps what they need.

4. Voicemail

Sadly, most businesses aren’t available 24/7, especially smaller organizations. However, this has become very important in modern business. If you receive calls outside of work hours, a good phone system can be used to leave a voicemail for your customers.

Voicemails will allow you to reach them even if you aren’t available at the moment. Similarly to on-hold messages, voicemail can be used to distribute useful information and engage potential customers.


Having a business phone system is a must. It improves the overall efficiency of your business and provides better customer support. These are both really valuable assets for any small business.

This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or management of EconoTimes.

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