How to Find the Best VoIP SIP Trunk Provider

How to Find the Best VoIP Service Provider

Voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) is one of the most in-demand business communication solutions available. The best VoIP service providers help business owners and IT decision-makers take control of their communication expenses without sacrificing call quality or service reliability. 

Instead of using aging legacy phone lines to transmit incoming and outbound calls, VoIP transmits internal and external voice communication over a high-speed internet connection. However, not all VoIP service providers offer the same value.

Business owners and IT decision-makers who aren’t quite sure what to look for when comparing their options risk long-term commitments with subpar service providers. The best options deliver secure, reliable, and flexible services that businesses need to streamline their processes and make the best use of their investment

To ensure you’re getting the best fit for your business, it’s important to understand where SIP-enabled functionality factors into the equation. We’ll explore the benefits of VoIP, the finer points of SIP, and several key features to consider while comparing your options.

Exploring the Appeal of Communication Solutions Offered by VoIP Service Providers

The cost of meeting today’s business communication needs with disparate technologies is getting out of hand. With VoIP, organizations have everything they need to keep communication flowing, whether their staff is working in-house or away from the office.

VoIP ensures a company’s voice service is accessible from nearly any internet-capable device or smartphone. Organizations only need an internet connection, a downloadable softphone application, and a reputable service provider to get started with a VoIP phone system. The technology is well-known for delivering exceptional call quality, attractive price points, and an impressive number of advanced features, which aren’t available with legacy phone service.

  • Find Me/Follow Me Call Routing
    Your staff must be within earshot of a paging system or seated at their desk to answer incoming calls with legacy phone service. With VoIP’s find me/follow me features enabled, incoming calls are routed through a series of numbers until the call is answered or reaches the appropriate voicemail account. The feature works across multiple devices, between an associate’s desktop and smartphone for example, and presets are easily modified to accommodate meeting times, after-hours calling, and more.
  • Auto Attendants
    The auto attendant prompts typically included with cloud-hosted VoIP ensure incoming business calls are directed to the right person, department, or voicemail based on caller responses. This virtual feature helps businesses improve operational efficiency by reducing the number of misdirected calls. Most auto attendant features implemented into voice over internet service can route multiple calls simultaneously while supporting multiple languages.
  • Digital Voicemail
    Voicemail isn’t a new concept. This voice communication technology has been around in one form or another since the 1970s. Digital voicemail, however, is quite different than the type of service associated with analog recordings. The files are accessible via web browser or email from any internet-capable device. Instead of linear playback, digital voice mail is easily transcribed to text-based communication that end users can efficiently manage in order of preference or priority.

Organizations connecting calls with old-school legacy phone service pay monthly fees based on the number of active phone lines assigned to their accounts in addition to unpredictable long-distance charges. Most are also subscribing to multiple services to support other modern business communication essentials—everything from video collaboration and file sharing to customer relationship management (CRM) tools and process automation software. 

Business owners recognizing the advantages of consolidating their communication channels to optimize workplace productivity are investing in SIP-supported VoIP services.

How SIP Trunking Optimizes VoIP-Supported Business Communication

Using VoIP as a standalone service is a viable option for small business owners looking for a cost-effective way to connect a collocated workforce through their computers and smartphones or by investing in a dedicated IP-enabled phone system. 

Session initiation protocol (SIP) combined with VoIP, on the other hand, is the better option for companies that need a more comprehensive approach to voice communication that ensures their ability to maintain connections to analog phone lines.

Approved by the Internet Engineering Task Force in 1996 and standardized in 1999, SIP is a time-tested technology that converts analog voice signals to digital data packets. Today, businesses looking for answers to “What is SIP trunking?” discover that it’s now the industry standard protocol for voice transmission and supported by multiple types of VoIP hardware. Once SIP converts analog signals to a digital packet, a single SIP session can transmit any combination of media.

Combining the attributes of VoIP with the benefits of SIP Trunking adds an impressive number of advantages.  

No Need to Invest in Expensive Hardware Upgrades

SIP trunking service eliminates the need to purchase a new VoIP business phone system to make or receive calls over the internet. Instead, SIP trunks ensure a greater return on your investment by forming the digital gateways that connect your analog phone system to the internet. 

Most in-house business phones, models dating as far back as the 1990s, are SIP enabled. Older models that aren’t SIP compatible are easily converted with an inexpensive analog-to-telephone adaptor (ATA). Adaptors are made by several respected brands and are available in a variety of sizes ranging from a single port to up to 24 connections.  

Access to an Impressive Number of In-Demand Features  

Although most VoIP service providers offer features that aren’t available with legacy phone service—auto attendants, call queues, digital voicemail, and internal text-based chat—subscribers combining the benefits of VoIP and SIP trunking gain much more.

Top-tier providers typically charge lower rates for domestic and international calls, for example, plus make it easy to integrate third-party video conferencing platforms, real-time call analytics, and text messaging applications into your cloud-hosted interface. You may also have the option to invest in toll-free numbers and phone number porting.

The Latest Advances in AI-Enhanced Communication Tech  

Machine learning (ML) algorithms build the “training data” that allow AI solutions to make predictions and appropriate decisions without being explicitly programmed for a task. The technologies open a vast number of possible benefits for business owners subscribing to SIP-supported VoIP.

Currently, organizations are using advanced technology for optimizing language translation tools, creating chatbots capable of conversational responses, and programming other consumer-centric functions. Experts anticipate the accelerated use of ML-supported AI to optimize load balancing, fault tolerance, and anomaly detection while leading to future advances in system security and service reliability as the cloud-hosted digital communication landscape evolves.

Choosing the Best VoIP Service Provider for Your Business

When starting any new business relationship, it’s essential to consider how that company’s capabilities, terms of service, and prices align with your short-term and long-term goals. Although you may not need everything a well-established, experienced VoIP service provider brings to the table, it’s important to have the option of incorporating a more robust set of solutions into your communication stack as your business grows.

Now that you know why so many organizations are investing in SIP-supported VoIP, you may also find it helpful to explore some important factors to consider as you compare the services of the many companies vying for your attention.

Contractual Obligations and Channel Limitations

Some VoIP providers require long-term commitments for a limited number of channels. That can be problematic when their call quality, network reliability, or customer support services prove subpar. Providers confident in their ability to meet and exceed consumer expectations don’t need long-term contracts to keep subscribers. Instead, they offer pay-as-you-go, month-to-month, contract-free service, volume pricing, and the ability to invest in an unlimited number of channels.

Knowing you can cancel your service at any time, however, won’t have much bearing on your business if you have to jump through multiple hoops or spend hours on hold to get the job done. Look for service providers that allow you to perform all essential administrative functions from a user-friendly, self-service control panel.

The Freedom to Choose How Your Service is Implemented

Some VoIP service providers require their subscribers to switch broadband carriers and assume that corporate decision-makers will be willing to terminate their relationship with local phone service providers entirely. For enterprise companies with a global reach, those requirements are counterproductive. Experienced VoIP service providers understand that no two companies are exactly the same. Most organizations with multiple locations have complex communication needs.

Instead of limiting their subscribers to a single internet service provider, they offer a service option commonly known in the communication industry as “bring your own carrier” (BYOC). It’s a perk that allows VoIP subscribers to determine which carrier contracts are the best option based on tech availability, service accessibility, and overall cost considerations.

The Service Provider’s Security Features

Cybersecurity threats are an unfortunate reality in today’s digitally connected world. But even for business owners maintaining an in-house legacy infrastructure, security risks, data breaches, and malware threats are a constant concern.

Look for (or ask about) protocols like multifactor authentication (MFA) protected data security, transport layer security (TLS), and other safeguards designed to detect and deter bad actors before they have the opportunity to impact your business. You might also confirm the provider’s ability to support any industry-specific security compliance standards you may need, such as HIPPA or PCI (payment card industry) DSS (data security standard).

The Provider’s Disaster Recovery Capabilities

Cloud-hosted digital communication requires a power supply and internet service to make and receive calls. Top-tier providers operate with enough geo-redundancy built into their network to ensure their services provide uninterrupted connectivity during internet outages, power outages, and gateway failures. They know what it takes to keep their clients from becoming unfortunate statistics when disaster strikes.

VoIP service providers operating geo-redundant networks have their mission-critical infrastructures spread across data centers in multiple geographic locations. Potential disruptions are detected in milliseconds, and standby services take over as needed. If your voice communication is disrupted for any reason, incoming calls are easily forwarded to an alternative number. As a business owner or IT decision-maker, accept nothing less than 99.99% uptime or better.

Widespread DID Coverage

Direct Inward Dialing (DID) is a feature that essentially uncouples your business phone system from its physical location. In other words, calls are routed to a specific phone number without the assistance of a menu or dialing an extension. The feature allows end users to appear to have a local presence in a specific market without requiring an office in the vicinity.

With SIP, DID can be implanted in digital and analog phone services. Widespread coverage ensures rapid connections, efficient communication, and improved consumer satisfaction scores. Most DID numbers can be provisioned within minutes. With the right provider, your business can also add Nomadic e911 to any USPS-verified address when emergency service is dialed from a corresponding DID number.  

International Toll Fraud Protection

International Revenue Sharing Fraud (IRSF), also known as international toll fraud, occurs when bad actors discover and exploit vulnerabilities in a telecom network and gain access to the system. They generate considerable revenue by making calls to premium-rate international phone numbers for a cut of their ill-gotten gains.

Top-tier SIP and VoIP service providers will help protect your business from international toll fraud by monitoring your SIP trunks in real time for signs of unusual activity. They immediately terminate unauthorized calls, block international calling on the impacted trunks, and alert your company and their network operations center at the first sign of suspicious activity.  

Discover How Your Business Can Benefit from SIP-Supported VoIP Service

Don’t get left behind by your competition because you’re running your business with outdated phone services that no longer meet your needs. Voice over Internet protocol is one of the most sought-after communication technologies available. Best-in-class SIP-supported VoIP service providers deliver cloud-hosted communication solutions that modern business owners need for reliable, flexible, and affordable service.For a free trial with 60 minutes of calling to the 48 contiguous US states and Canada, visit SIP.US. We offer fast setup, reliable service, and 24/7 subscriber support. Get started today to discover why SIP.US is the best VoIP service provider for your business.

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