An important step for a growing company is acquiring a business phone service, giving your business a jolt of respectability and professionalism with dedicated phone numbers and advanced features.
Phone service for businesses has gotten significantly more affordable over the years thanks to the rise of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol).
With VoIP, you don’t need to rely on a legacy phone company to provide service. Instead, you can use an online service that replicates the experience of using a major corporation’s traditional phone tree. VoIP systems are much more affordable for small businesses and startups than standard phone service, and it’s opened the door for a wide variety of companies to enjoy business phone service.
However, with dozens of companies offering VoIP business phone service today, it can be difficult to figure out which is the right one for your business needs. After all, these companies largely have similar pricing models and feature sets, so how do you make your decision?
In this guide, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of our six favorite business phone services. Along the way, we’ll identify a specific type of entrepreneur who can benefit from each company’s offering. Which one is the best choice for you?
The Best Business Phone Services
Before we get into the list, we’ll quickly note that, to create a level playing field, we based all pricing details on each company’s annual rates. If you would rather have a month-to-month plan, you can add a few dollars to each monthly price point.
Additionally, most (but not all) of these companies vary their prices based on how many users you’ll have in the system. For the most part, we selected pricing for 1-4 users unless otherwise noted. As a general rule of thumb, the more users you have, the less you’ll pay per user.
Nextiva: Best for Overall Service
- Supports smartphones and legacy devices
- Unlimited voice and video calling in all plans
- Lots of integrations in upper-tier plans
- 24/7 support
- Solid customer feedback
- Limited integrations in base plan
Nextiva is the gold standard of VoIP business phone services, and they were an easy choice for our top pick in this guide. Flexibility is the name of the game with Nextiva, as you can use its app on any smartphone or use one of many supported legacy devices.
You’ll receive unlimited voice and video calling in all plans. While it’s quite common to see unlimited calling these days, most entry-level plans don’t include unlimited video capabilities. Nextiva also includes one of the best auto-attendant features in the industry, easily guiding callers through your company’s phone tree.
Nextiva offers integrations with popular software applications like Outlook and Google, making it easy to import your contacts. You’ll also receive unlimited faxes (another relatively uncommon feature for base-level business phone packages), 24/7 support, and local and toll-free numbers.
If you need advanced features, Nextiva’s higher-cost plans are absolutely stuffed with them, including sales productivity management service, extended integrations, and more. In addition, Nextiva receives outstanding feedback from its customers, with thousands of positive reviews all across the web.
Whether you just need a couple of phone lines or you need an enterprise-level solution, Nextiva has an excellent business phone service for you.
RingCentral: Best for Business Texting
- Unlimited texting
- Positive customer reviews
- Solid introductory bonuses
- Base package lacks some common features
- Few integrations in base package
Before we dig into the details, we’ll point out that RingCentral’s pricing is based on one user. The next level is 2-20 users, with each tier costing $7-10 less per user than the prices listed above.
RingCentral offers unlimited calling in the United States and Canada, along with unlimited texting. If your business does a lot of texting with customers and/or vendors, RingCentral is an outstanding choice. Not many competitors offer unlimited texting in all packages like RingCentral does. This company also gets solid customer feedback, although not quite as universally positive as Nextiva’s reviews.
In addition, while we can’t guarantee that this deal is still available, at the time of this writing, RingCentral is offering a strong 30% discount off most plans. However, RingCentral also has some drawbacks that kept it from challenging Nextiva for the top spot.
Namely, there are quite a few relatively common features that RingCentral excludes from its entry-level plan, requiring an upgrade to a more expensive package. For instance, this is the case with features like unlimited faxes, software integrations, and even 24/7 support. For this reason, RingCentral ranks behind Nextiva unless your business requires unlimited texting.
Ooma: Best for Desk Phones
- Outstanding call quality on Ooma desk phones
- 24/7 phone support
- Unlimited calls in North America
- Strong pricing for small businesses
- Great customer feedback
- No per-user discounts for large companies
- Mobile app not as intuitive as some competitors
Do you like the old-school approach of having desk phones for each employee? If so, give Ooma a long look. Ooma is compatible with many legacy devices — you can supply your own analog phones or buy VoIP phones from Ooma. However, Ooma does not allow you to buy your own VoIP phones and use them on their system. You could also simply use Ooma’s mobile app but that undermines one of its biggest selling points. After all, we prefer both Nextiva and RingCentral for app usage.
Ooma provides some welcome features like unlimited calling throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Additionally, you’ll receive virtual receptionist service, along with toll-free, direct dial, and local phone numbers. However, there are also some minor drawbacks, like Ooma’s limit of just one fax per user per month.
Still, overall, Ooma has an interesting offer. Its prices are quite reasonable and do not vary depending on the number of users. Furthermore, we like how Ooma offers integrations with many popular systems, like Salesforce, Microsoft, Google, and ZenDesk products.
It’s also worth mentioning that Ooma has an outstanding customer satisfaction reputation. We found thousands of reviews of its services and nearly all of them are positive. If any of that piques your interest, Ooma could be an excellent fit for your business.
Grasshopper: Best for Solo Entrepreneurs
- 24/7 support
- Strong customer reviews
- Flat-rate pricing benefits small businesses
- Does not support legacy devices
- Can’t scale beyond midsized companies
- Lacks advanced features
- No integrations
Grasshopper is the first option in this guide that has a flat monthly pricing model that does not vary if you add or subtract users. It charges $26 per month for one phone number and three extensions, $44 for three numbers and six extensions, and $80 for five numbers and unlimited extensions.
Grasshopper includes unlimited calling and 24/7 support with all of its business phone plans. Additionally, Grasshopper gets strong reviews, with high average rating scores amidst hundreds of reviews available online. However, a drawback of Grasshopper’s services is the fact that it is a virtual-only service, meaning you can only use it over the internet or using your mobile data plan.
Overall, we love Grasshopper as an option for small businesses that don’t need more than a couple of phone numbers. For these businesses, the flat-rate pricing model of Grasshopper can really save you a chunk of change.
Vonage: Best for Local Businesses
- Affordable base-rate package
- 30% discount for new customers
- Unlimited texting
- Many common features cost extra
- Higher-tier packages don’t add enough value
As with the other discounts we’ve mentioned in this guide, there’s no guarantee this one is still available. That said, as we write this, Vonage is offering 30% off of its services. This provider offers all customers unlimited calls, unlimited texting, and unlimited team messaging. We’re off to a pretty good start with Vonage!
We also appreciate Vonage’s 24/7 support. Its customer reviews are more positive than negative, but it’s more of a mixed bag than we’ve seen with the other companies we’ve discussed. In addition, there are relatively common features that can only be purchased as add-ons from Vonage. For instance, they don’t include toll-free numbers, call recording, or visual voicemail features in any of their business phone packages.
However, given Vonage’s low price points, we still think there’s quite a bit of value here for local businesses that don’t need toll-free phone numbers. If that sounds like you, give them a look!
GoToConnect: Best for International Calls
- Great international rates
- Unlimited extensions
- Excellent auto-attendant feature
- Outstanding customer feedback
- Somewhat high prices
- Most valuable features require upgraded service
- Basic plan excludes customer support
A quick note regarding GoToConnect’s pricing: These rates are for one user. The next level is for 2-10 users and cuts these prices by $5-10 each.
GoToConnect has some interesting attributes, including local and toll-free numbers, unlimited extensions, unlimited team messaging, and an excellent auto-attendant feature. However, GoToConnect does not offer faxes in its baseline plan, so you’d have to upgrade to at least the second tier to get this feature.
The big selling point of GoToConnect — and the reason we found a spot for them in this guide — is the fact that it offers a better deal for international calls than any competitor. If you purchase one of GoToConnect’s top two business phone service packages, you will receive unlimited calls to 50+ countries!
For most of our readers, GoToConnect won’t jump off the page. However, for businesses that make frequent international calls, GoToConnect is a great choice.
As you can see, there is a business phone service out there that can satisfy the needs of any company. Whether you prioritize great overall service, texting, desk phones, local calls, or international calls, we’ve identified an excellent option for your needs in this guide.
At the end of the day, we trust all of these companies 100% and we’re confident that any of them could provide solid, dependable business phone service for your company. Contact your chosen company today to get started!