There’s a New List of Top 10 VoIP Providers. We’re Not on It. That’s Good.
WHY WE’RE PROUD TO HAVE A HIGHER PRICE (NOT HIGHER COST)
CheapestVoIPCalls.Net today released their list of the top 10 SMB VoIP telephone service providers and ShoreTel is not included. Some of our competitors are, but not us. We couldn’t be happier. It isn’t because we have a particular problem with CheapestVoIPCalls.Net, it’s because customers often have problems with cheap VoIP calls.
When it comes to business communications (and lots of other things) you get what you pay for. That’s not to say that price isn’t a valid consideration, but it must always be weighed against value. Fortunately, there are some very specific and measurable characteristics that separate premium VoIP providers, like ShoreTel, from basic (cheap) VoIP providers. Here are a few:
- Call Quality and Reliability – The primary obligation of every VoIP provider is to provide reliable dial tone and acceptable call quality. In order to keep costs down, many VoIP providers use the public Internet to route calls. The public Internet is a fickle thing and this can result in a “Skype-like” experience which businesses that rely on the phones to generate revenue and support customers find unacceptable. Premium solutions like ShoreTel Sky offer clients private, point-to-point networks and backup connectivity to ensure call quality and reliability. This approach is certainly more expensive, but businesses should consider the hidden costs of lost productivity and revenue that can result from poor quality communications.
- Installation – Moving from one phone system to another is a big deal. Among other things, it involves porting phone numbers from one carrier to another, setting up user profiles and assigning administrative roles, setting up call routing and auto-attendants, ensuring network connectivity and possibly changing desktop handsets. It is usually a time of some anxiety on the part of the communications team as well as each phone user. Cheap VoIP companies often simply send clients a box of phones and an instruction manual. ShoreTel believes that a seamless installation process is critical to the overall client experience and provides an entire account team dedicated to each new client. We offer remote or on-site experts for every install. Again, this costs more. Our clients think a stress-free, tested and painless cutover experience is worth it.
- Support – There’s nothing cheap about providing direct end user support with well-trained expert customer care professionals. That’s why many low-cost providers limit the amount of support they provide or charge extra for human intervention. Our approach is the opposite. In fact, we make it easy for every end user to reach a member of our support team by double tapping a button on their phone. They don’t even need to dial a number. This frees our clients to manage their business, not their phone system.
Surely basic VoIP is sufficient for some businesses. If your communications are mostly internal and the phones are not considered a strategic asset, a cheap solution might work very well for you. For clients that need a more robust, reliable solution with a team of experts dedicated to their success, our premium service is well worth the price. How do we know? Our clients can leave us after just 12 months, but they don’t. Our clients stay with for an average of seven years and we have the lowest "churn" rate in the industry.
We’ll continue to strive to be the best, not the cheapest. We suggest you take a tour of our product and see for yourself.