As technology advances, old technologies get rendered obsolete and replaced. This includes technology we once thought staples of our lives, such as traditional landline phones. In fact, many small- and medium-sized businesses are considering making the switch from landline phones to a more modern alternative like Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone systems. Learn why it might be time to hang up on your business landline and switch to VoIP.
Why should you let go of landline phones?
Since the year 2001, fixed landline subscriptions have been steadily declining in number. Between 2020 and 2021 the number went from 103.05 million to 97.11 million,doubling the decline that had occurred between 2019 and 2020. According to the Washington Post, by the end of 2022, approximately 73% of Americans lived in a household without a landline.
Meanwhile, most people today rely on cell phones for both personal and professional use. Businesses have similarly followed this trend by switching to centralized virtual phone systems.
Here are five reasons behind this trend and perhaps why you should consider replacing your business landline with an alternative like VoIP:
1. Landlines aren't as reliable
The sound quality and reliability of copper landlines has fallen over the years. Fewer people use landlines, so telephone companies reduce their maintenance and support for these systems. In contrast, cellular networks handle more traffic, so they receive better maintenance. Supply and demand in action.
The growing disparity in maintenance quality is why businesses are letting go of landlines in favor of cell phone networks at increasing rates. As a result, the reliability reputation of cell phone networks is now better than that of copper-wire landline networks.
2. Landlines are becoming obsolete
As of 2019, telecommunications carriers no longer have to install copper wiring because the Federal Communications Commission did away with the regulations requiring it. Fewer of the major telecommunications companies are maintaining or replacing copper landline networks. Companies encourage customers to switch to digital phones because they and their networks are cheaper to maintain. That is in addition to the convenience benefits of modern digital phones such as email access and various apps.
The downturn in support for landlines could disrupt many businesses if they are unprepared. This means businesses need to adapt by adopting modern alternatives like VoIP. If they don't upgrade, they may miss out on advanced call features that their rivals enjoy.
3. Missed calls
As an active business owner, you're probably often on the move, especially if your business operates at multiple sites. Satisfying the need for mobility increases the risk of missing important calls from clients. Employing a full-time receptionist solely to answer phones might not be financially feasible for most SMBs. Even then, most clients may prefer or insist on direct communication with you.
Then there is the cost and hassle maintaining multiple lines, services, and subscriptions. Old landlines are increasingly becoming more expensive for businesses to manage. On the other hand, virtual phone systems seamlessly connect all your phones and include options like call forwarding. Thus, clients can reach you wherever you are, on any device. Also, unlike old landline setups, virtual phone systems stop busy signals by holding calls when many clients want to contact you.
4. Customers prefer text and email
Modern consumers are shifting their communication preferences away from traditional phone calls. As of 2023, 62.4% of organizations that communicate through text are SMBs. Additionally, only 16% of American consumers prefer being reached by phone call.
Consumers, regardless of age, now prefer text and email communication with businesses. While phone calls still play a vital role in business, virtual phone networks are better suited to connecting provider and consumer. Text messaging and email are now the preferred ways for businesses to reach customers, but landlines don't support those methods.
5. Employee preferences
Your employees may already prefer using their mobile phones for work. In that case, there's little reason to invest in expensive business landlines. Meanwhile, the new virtual networks easily integrate with existing equipment, forgoing the purchase of expensive new hardware. Those same networks allow you to customize access levels for each employee, enhancing overall efficiency.
By understanding these reasons, you can make a better informed decision on whether you should give up on landline phones for your business. If you want to learn more about alternatives to landlines like virtual phone systems and how they can help your business, connect with Kortek Solutions today.