The article below is reprinted with permission from www.getvoip.com originally appearing here.
Committing to a contract with a business VoIP provider isn’t easy. And it’s understandable you’re concerned about locking yourself into a three-year contract with a business VoIP provider. Three years can be a long time if you’re not getting the quality service you signed up for.
To ensure that, we’re going to break down ten crucial things to consider before signing a three year contract with a business VoIP provider in order to make the most out of your phone system and improve the overall user and customer experience.
1. Cancellation Policy
Like we just said, three years can be a long time if the service you signed up for isn’t meeting your expectations. It can also be a costly three years if there’s no way of backing out of a contract. Some providers might hit you with cancellation fees like cell phone companies, so it’s imperative to understand what it costs to cancel if need be.
Knowing the policy is also key to determining when the best time to leave a contract is. If you’re a couple months away from renewing your current contract, but you’re not sure if it’s best to wait out the remaining time or to cancel immediately, this is what makes knowing what you’re signing up for so important. Depending on your current situation, it might be better to either wait it out or to cancel and save some money.
If an agent seems hesitant about going over the cancellation policy, that’s should be taken as a sign that you might want to reconsider your options. However, most providers are transparent about pricing and will be happy to share that info.
2. Consistent Upgrades
Cloud-based VoIP providers have the benefit of easily updating their features on a regular basis in order to remain competitive. This comes particularly in handy when we’re talking about security. Cloud-hosted business VoIP solutions have to adhere to specific protocols that ensure their service is offering the best possible securities features to prevent security breaches and data theft. Vonage, for example, clearly outlines this in their FAQs.
The reason to look into how often a business VoIP provider upgrades their service is because it’s telling how much they prioritize the user experience. Companies today separate themselves from their competition by offering a better experience. If they’re not highlighting how often they’re updating their service, it could be an indicator that your best interests aren’t the top priority. And if you’re considering a three-year contract with that provider, the lack of usability will be a significant detriment to your company.
Always be sure to go to the provider’s website and check out their blog. They might even have developer notes that mention the latest software updates.
3. Scalable Pricing Plans
It’s also imperative to understand how much the plan you’re going to sign up for costs. Even better, you should know if you’re going to be locked into that initial price. Three years is a long time in the tech industry. Trends, features, and functionalities are all changing rapidly in conjunction with the effort to improve the customer experience.
If you’re a startup and you predict your business will need more to stay competitive, it should be clear that you can upgrade your plan at any time. Or, at the very least, there are add-ons you can purchase to personalize the user experience. Priorities change as your business grows. The plan you lock yourself into shouldn’t keep you from meeting the specific needs of your customers.
[The article continues in our next blog installment.]