How to choose a Small Business Phone System

Estimated Time to Read: 3 minutes

Efficient Communication is of paramount importance for all businesses but particularly so for small businesses because they work with limited resources. This is why small businesses need a phone system particularly tailored for them.

Fortunately, there are many top-notch phone systems available out there but identifying the right small business phone system isn’t as easy as it sounds. You need to learn about various types of phone systems available and the benefits so that you don’t end up losing money and time. However, you don’t need to search elsewhere as we’ve boiled down everything about the small business phone systems in this article. Read on to learn.

The Various Types of Business Phone Systems

Business phone systems are generally classified into four types.

Landlines with PBX

Landlines are generally suitable for small businesses when you already have them and do not wish to upgrade. For business purposes, landlines require a Private Branch Exchange (PBX). It is mainly a private phone network for the office. PBX routes incoming and outgoing calls and offers features like call holding and conference calling.

Virtual Phone Service

Virtual phone systems is a sophisticated call forwarding service ideal for entrepreneurs and sole proprietorships. It allows businesses with offsite employees to present a professional image to clients at all times. It also offers features like automated receptionists, voicemail, call screening, toll-free numbers and online faxing.

On-Premise VoIP Systems

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone systems uses the internet to facilitate calls. On-premise VoIP systems are similar to PBX systems. It comes with increased set up costs-you have to buy the equipment along with the software. It makes sense if you don’t want to depend on outside parties for maintaining the service. But that will require you to invest in IT personnel which will add to the overall costs.

Cloud-Based VoIP Systems

With this system, all phone features and services are delivered through the cloud. The biggest advantage of the cloud-based VoIP system is that there is no equipment to maintain apart from the phones. The service provider is completely responsible for maintaining and upgrading the technology for you.

Cloud-based VoIP system providers usually offer the most features at economical prices which makes them a great choice for small businesses. The only downside to the VoIP system is that if your internet connection isn’t good then you will be in a fix.

What are the features to look for?

Any small business phone system may come with a plethora of features but ideally, you should opt for one that will allow you and your employees to work smarter and faster at an affordable price.

Let’s look at a few features that your phone system must have:

Call Forwarding

If you don’t want to let a phone call go unanswered, then call forwarding and call queue features will be of utmost importance to you. Call forwarding directs an inbound call to a designated landline or mobile phone.

Interactive Voice Response

IVR is an automated system that creates a web of menus which callers can navigate by pressing keys or speaking in response to prompts.

Auto Attendant

This is similar to IVR and is particularly useful for small businesses that do not want to employ a receptionist to answer phone calls. It is a voice menu system that makes it possible for callers to go directly to the extension numbers that they want to talk to.


This is the best way to receive detailed messages. There is also a voicemail to email feature that can provide you with a quickly transcribed version of the conversation.

Conference Calling

Small businesses need teams to collaborate well. Conference calling provides transparency and allows team members located at distant places to come together and discuss matters at length.

Call Monitoring

With call monitoring feature, you can find out all your call logs with details like caller name, call status, date and time, total call duration and total call cost. You can access all the call recordings and analyze each and every conversation.

So which feature do you require the most? Do you’ve any questions about a small business phone system? Please feel free to leave your comments below.