Top 11 VoIP Providers for UK Small Businesses [Updated 2020]Written by Alla on August 31, 2016
VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, is a trending phone service software which allows businesses to make calls using their internet connection instead of through traditional phone lines – no landline phone company required.
Avoiding the long tech explanations and unnecessary terminology, VoIP turns phone signals into digital ones and sends them across the Internet. As a result, VoIP phone systems give businesses the freedom to use a wide range of devices to make and receive calls.
So why use VoIP?
Firstly, to save money. Generally, VoIP services are cheaper than traditional phone services, especially when we’re talking about roaming calls.
Secondly, VoIP tends to include way more functions. You can have your clients redirected to your mobile number while you’re enjoying margaritas on the beach.
Thirdly, say hello to voice quality that is the equal of and oftentimes better than traditional phone connections. Once there’s strong bandwidth, you’re good to go.
VoIP networks also offer extra flexibility. While private phone networks have a limited amount of phones that can be added to a system based on the number of available lines, VoIP networks are only limited by bandwidth. This means that thousands of connections can conceivably be made!
The advantages of VoIP are staggering when you think about it. That may be why BT, the UK’s largest telecoms provider, made an end-of-life announcement that by 2025 they’ll shut off their PSTN (public switched telephone network) traditional circuit-switched telephone network. Thereby requiring all businesses to move to VoIP solutions.
For this reason we’ve worked extra hard to research and compile some key features of the best UK VoIP service providers. Stay well connected and ahead of the curve. Start exploring the options today.
Top UK VoIP Service Providers
- Various plans starting from £2 per month for PBX (aimed at startups and small businesses)
- Port existing number from almost any other provider
- Poftphone and browser calling
- Hardware pre-programmed to work straight out of the box
- Cloud-based VoIP calling, conferencing, chat, collaboration and call center capabilities free for 3 months
- Voice, chat, SMS, email, FAX, IVR, chatbots, and 3rd party media available
- Mitel Business Analytics offers flexibility: from 1 to 000s users / from 1 to 100s sites
- Easy to deploy, easy to adopt, easy to use
- Mitel Flex provides enhanced mobility for smartphones, softphones and tablets
- Small business phone system from £8month
- Unlimited calling in the U.K.
- Unlimited video meetings and chat
- Auto-receptionist, voicemail and extensions
- G Suite, Office 365, Outlook, NetSuite, Salesforce and Zendesk Integrations
- Unlimited Internet Faxing
- Plans start from ₤19.99 monthly per user
- One phone number for calling, team messaging, and video meetings access
- 24/7 customer support
- Automatically convert voicemail messages into text form
- Keeps complete records of all inbound and outbound calls and faxes
- Able to host unlimited number of audio conference calls, with up to 1,000 attendees per conference
- Hold face-to face-meetings via HD video with up to 4 participants and 4 video feeds
- Real-time screen sharing improves collaboration and speed of decision making
- Team chat feature lets you send and receive chats in real-time with team members
- Real-time backup of all files, mobile photos, and videos
- Transcribed voicemails can be delivered via email or viewed on the mobile app
- Various plans starting from £8.99 per user per month
- No contract, no cancel fee
- Free call forwarding and routing
- Unlimited voicemails
- 14-day free trial, no credit card required
- Plans start from £5.95 per month
- Wide choice of UK local numbers
- Easy call diversion to mobile or landline
- £5 welcome call credit
- Goes abroad with you and avoids roaming charges
- Free 0843 and 0844 phone numbers
- Local and City phone numbers starting from £6.96 per month
- Free divert of an unlimited number of calls for up to 5 landline and mobile numbers
- Simple web and mobile portal for complete control
- Provides music on hold options for better audio branding
- No base fees and no minimum contract
- Ability to connect offices, external team members and home offices to one account
- Low cost rates and call pack worldwide
- Easy faxing in your browser with the ability to upload documents
- Comprehensive UK call packages starting from £30 per month
- Telephone numbers start from £1.99 per month
- No connection fees, cancel anytime
- Able to set up time-of-day diverts and route calls to many numbers
- Allows for tracking & viewing live call stats to better understand inbound calls
- Can play pre-recorded announcement to give a good first impression
- Business package starts at $4.99 per month
- Make and receive free calls for up to $5 every month
- Keep a recording of your calls for future reference
- Easily create custom pre-recorded messages
- Handle multiple calls using call queues
- 40% discount for international calls with Premium plan
- Single-user plans start from £2.99 per month
- Free voicemail box and ability to configure any email address you want with your number to receive call alerts
- Call forwarding to multiple destinations at the same time
- Three way calling feature lets you set up and ad hoc conferences
- Call Recording and other options from £1.99 per month
- Access via handset, web, soft phone or mobile application
- Auto attendant can direct your calls to the right place
- Flexible access via via handset, web, soft phone or mobile application
- Add company related messages and custom on hold music
- Consolidate your bills & services with one trusted provider
- 24/7 support options
- Monthly plans are from £10 per month
- A stripped down free version of the Counterpath software called X-Lite is available
- Free Auto Attendant, Intelligent Call Diversion, Call Filter, Call Blocker and more
- Callback cost is calculated separately
- Personalised numbers start from £1 per month (pay as you go option)
- You’re not tied down to contracts
- Choose to add and remove the services you need
- Mobile services including SMS Text Messages, Call Back Services & free access callback
- Have your number listed in the BT phone book and the 118 online directory services
Top VoIP features to help your small business grow:
- Call Forwarding: ensures customer’s calls never go unanswered by automatically redirecting inbound calls to another extension or phone number. For example, in working in an office setting, you can minimise lost sales leads by redirecting calls to a mobile number when away from your desk.
- Call Recording: saves calls for training and reference purposes and may wind up being exceedingly helpful in customer service or sales environments where it’s useful to save important conversations.
- Find me/follow me call routing: allows for the creation of a list of numbers where they can be found before a call goes to voicemail. Your office phone could ring twice followed your cell phone and then your home phone.
- Music on hold: if you’ve ever been stuck on hold listening to silence, or worse, elevator music on a loop, you’ll understand just how important this is. Having the ability to choose what your callers listen to as they wait is a true gift and it can do wonders for small business branding.
- Auto attendant: is typically a premium feature that allows callers to interact with a menu and be forwarded to the appropriate extension. Your business can start to seem a lot more professional and impressive with the help of a good auto-receptionist.
- Call Flip: transfers calls from one device to another with the press of a button without disconnecting the line. It can become very useful if, for example, your cell is about to die. Stay professional with clients by seamlessly switching to another device.
- Conferencing: can turn confusing fast. But having the ability to set up tools like a conference floor monitor who manages things like invitations and “hand-raises” aids greatly in keeping collaborations streamlined.
- Business Tool Integration: lets you connect with other business tools such as ticket systems, chat, and email in order to keep records centralised and teams connected.
- Voicemail: advanced voicemail packages can include things like custom greetings and automated transcriptions that convert messages into text.
To wrap up
I know. The add-on possibilities seem endless. But depending on your business specifics, you’ll want to consider choosing different solutions. For example, if you have 1-2 client calls per week, it makes sense to think about a VoIP provider that charges on a per minute basis without fixed contracts.
On the flip side, if you receive a large number of calls each day, consider monthly contracts, adding voicemail and other features to improve the customer experience and save more money.