Technology Advice for Small Businesses

Get VoIP-ready for the holidays

Small business owners understand the nuisance that comes with the holiday season. Fortunately, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) systems offer numerous cloud-enabled features that ought to help you handle large volumes of calls and cover periods when you are closed throughout the shopping season. However, if you don’t optimize their utility, you may run into some problems. Beat the rush with these tips.

Check your VoIP equipment

Sometimes, problems with VoIP don’t have anything to do with your service provider or even the underlying servers that host the solution. Instead, issues may stem from the physical VoIP lines and phones themselves. One common issue with VoIP is that if your equipment is stacked too closely, users may experience a degradation in call quality.

You can ask your employees to check call quality, especially if two VoIP devices are close to one another. If there are issues, moving them further apart should clear this up.

Beyond this, take the time to inspect all cables and connections to ensure they are in good condition and are able to deal with increased wear and tear during the holidays. If your equipment is old and outdated, you may need to look for replacements.

Establish VoIP system monitoring

With people rushing to get their last-minute shopping done, your staff will likely experience a sharp spike in inquiries and assistance. A monitoring solution can help predict when issues may arise. Whether you are open or closed for the holidays, make sure to implement the following:

Busy periods
Set up call queuing with hold music or estimated wait time.
Leave recorded messages with complete information and an alternative way to contact support such as a hotline, an email address, or your website.
Change your configuration to help you manage shorter business hours.
Set diverts for reduced hours.

Closed periods
Set automated messages or announcements to say that your business will be closed during the holiday season and what day you will reopen.
Update receptionist greetings before Christmas to remind callers of your holiday hours.
Set up call diverts for employees who will be working remotely.

Enable dedicated support

The great thing about VoIP is the support that comes with it. You can keep call costs low as employees working from home can still communicate with the office. A good VoIP system can be configured to work for you and your customers no matter what hours you are open during the holidays.

Whether it’s diverting calls to mobile devices or remote machines, a good VoIP service provider understands that your business needs to be operational even over the holidays, and their support service underpins that.

Work with an experienced IT provider

Christmas is busy enough without having to worry about something like a phone outage. If you need help with your phone systems, or want to discuss how VoIP could help your business, call us today and we’ll make sure to recommend the best VoIP solution to ensure that your customers are happy and satisfied.