Sip Trunking for Dummies

Don’t know much about SIP Trunking? No worries!

SIP Trunking can be, and is very painless and easy to switch to.

The flavors will vary, and depending on how much you choose to do yourself, so will the pricing.

First you need to ask yourself some questions and provide really honest answers, as you will more than likely be with a provider for at least a year, in some cases longer.

  • How do I use my phone system?
    • Are you simply receiving calls from clients?
    • Are you hosting conference calls everyday with clients?
    • Are you often out of the office and rely on voicemails?
    • What about faxing?

You want to honestly understand how important the phone system is to you or your business, how often you receive calls, when you receive them, is someone there to answer. How is the state of your phone system going to reflect your business model to the clients?

These answers will dictate what services you are looking for in a SIP Trunk provider. While many providers are out there, they do not all offer the same services, and while you can find several very affordable providers, if they can not provide the services you need, how will that help you?

  • How will my needs for the phone system grow over time?

We are a very digital oriented human race today, the SIP trunk phone system simply will expand on that, with offerings like voicemail to email, texting, and video chats. You may not need all these features, however voicemail to email is usually a pretty standard feature and one that can keep employees connected even when they are out of the office. The ability to forward a desk phone to a cell phone is another feature that is generally included, and another excellent feature for workers who are rarely in the office.

With the ability to have a SIP Trunk and accept calls and voicemails sent to one single number from anywhere, without actually giving out a personal cell phone number, the ability to do business anytime, and anywhere should be a true consideration in how your business can benefit from sip trunking, and what your future plans may be.

  • How much bandwidth do I need from my ISP? Do I need an additional access point?

While searching for a provider, you should be looking at the information they provide on bandwidth usage over a specific number of calls, if you plan supply your own internet connection. However there are providers who will supply dedicated connections for your voice service, and this is sometimes far more effective when and if you have issues with your trunks. Simply contacting the provider will be enough to sort out issues, however if you choose to utilize and existing network connection, or even if you plan to have your provider bring in a second connect specifically for voice, it is wise to keep in the front of your mind that you now have multiple points of contact for phone issues. Will it be the trunk provider, will it be the ISP, could it simply be an internal issue? The complexity of issues that arise are not frequent, but as with any other type of support, it can be easy to point at someone else. Be sure to check the reliability of not only Sip trunk providers, but of the ISP as well.

The complexity of the system you will need should be dictated by the needs of your staff and your customers, not the price of the provider. Sip trunks are a powerful tool for your business, having a clear understanding of your own needs, as well as those of your customers will allow you the knowledge and flexibility to select a provider that offers the services you require with the room to grow.