Author: Casey Houser
Posted on January 15, 2020 by Casey Houser
If you’re in a bootstrapping startup or similar business position, it could be time to consider using a lightweight phone plan if you haven’t already.
Perhaps you use your personal smartphone as your business contact. Or maybe you don’t have a phone contact at all. Our new Minute Plans work well for entrepreneurs and smaller businesses that want to get started with an affordable phone system.
Minute Plans let you keep your personal and business lives separate, and they open a number of avenues for marketing and customer interaction that may not have been previously available to you.
Entrepreneurs and Customer Reach
Many bootstrapping startups are, by definition, beginning to pull themselves into public awareness, so they often rely on services like chatbots because they’re easy to set up and (often) offer free plans. This gives startup businesses flexibility because they can try multiple similar tools at once.
However, while online chat services work well, they’re constrained in their scope because they can’t reach offline and don’t offer the same type of personal assistance found in a one-to-one voice conversation. We know you’re already doing great with cost-effective communications platforms, but we also know that affordable doesn’t have to mean limited. You can easily step up your game with the addition of business voice service.
The VirtualPBX Minute 300 plan is only $9.99 and offers 300 minutes of calling. This is more than enough for startup businesses to get started. It also won’t break your bank while you receive professional business features like Voicemail and a dedicated Main Business Number, which are essential for establishing your business as a professional entity outside your personal identity.
Small Business Meetings
Small businesses may find their needs a bit different than entrepreneurs. They may desire features like Automated Attendant to route inbound callers to multiple owners or associates.
Bootstrapping startups may also find themselves having more frequent conversations with remote investors and company stakeholders, which will result in remote phone conferences.
With a VirtualPBX phone plan, investors can call and reach a business voicemail box instead of a personal one. They can also rely on you to establish audio conferences that are easy to reach. Personal phone plans don’t typically provide that kind of service, but Audio Conferencing on any VirtualPBX plan makes it easy to share a conference phone number and room number with as many participants as you need.
Bootstrapping Startups, Give Minute Plans a Try
If you’re bootstrapping your business, keep your priorities in order and invest in an affordable business phone plan from VirtualPBX. Our Minute Plans are affordable and scalable — letting you add unlimited users at no extra cost — so you can expand your operations without a second thought.
Our features help you present a professional image and keep your customers and investors connected to your operations.
Your customers want options when reaching out to you, so be ready with a professional phone system.
Posted on January 14, 2020 by Casey Houser
One of the prominent reasons we created our new VirtualPBX Minute Plans is to give you an affordable way to forward calls to your cell phone.
Minute plans start at only $9.99 per month and make a great fit for businesses that want to use their personal devices but maintain a separation between business and private life. Like our existing customer, The Marks Group, you too can have calls forwarded to your smartphone without giving up your personal cell number to any clients.
How does Call Forwarding work? Take a closer look in the following sections.
Permanent Call Forwarding
Our Dash platform is the online dashboard you’ll use when managing your VirtualPBX account. It lets you set up users on your account and manage their phone numbers. You can even list your smartphone number as your primary contact method through Call Forwarding.
Say you have a personal smartphone and a VirtualPBX account, but you don’t want to use a separate phone to take calls from all your customers. You only need to enter the settings for your user to find the Call Forwarding menu.
After entering your number, you can specify your preference for voicemails and whether or not you’ll see a caller’s original caller ID.
When you want to forward calls to your cell phone all the time, this is the option you need.
Failover Call Forwarding
Failover mode in our Call Forwarding feature lets you use another device on your plan as your primary phone. Callers will only then be call forwarded when your primary device is offline.
In the case of our VirtualPBX Minute Plans, we allow every user access to our Web Phone for no extra charge.
You can choose to use the Web Phone as your primary device. Then, when you’ve selected Failover Mode in your Call Forwarding settings, inbound calls will only reach your smartphone when your Web Phone is offline. Otherwise, calls will always go to your Web Phone.
When you move between devices but sometimes need to forward calls to your cell phone, this option works well because individuals are automatically call forwarded depending on your status.
Pick Minute Plans to Forward Calls to Your Cell Phone
Our Minute Plans help you save money by digging into the types of features that best fit our customers. These plans adapt well to entrepreneurs and business that don’t complete many outbound calls.
You can select the number of included minutes (300, 500, 1000) that fit your needs and forward calls for control and mobility. And if you ever need to upgrade, our more advanced plans are always available and our per-minute rates set the industry standard.
Ready to begin forwarding calls? Speak to a VirtualPBX Sales representative today.
Posted on January 9, 2020 by Casey Houser
For all users of our User-Based and Minute-Based Business Phone Plans, you should see a few changes in your online dashboards, including a new Do Not Disturb setting and redesign of the VirtualPBX Dashboard.
Do Not Disturb is a new setting that allows both users and admins to mark an individual’s status as away or active with just one click of a button.
Admins now also have more control over their systems through an updated Dashboard main page and navigation menu.
Keep reading for a quick overview of these changes and how to access the features.
Do Not Disturb
Sometimes your users need to mark themselves as unreachable. Perhaps they’re in a meeting, having lunch, on a conference call, or leaving the office for an errand.
For those times when users don’t want to log themselves out of the phone system, they can use Do Not Disturb. This setting can be accessed in two distinct ways – with each one performing the same function of marking all phones associated with the user as currently unavailable.
When encountering a user set to Do Not Disturb, an inbound call will go to that user’s voicemail box.
1. Header Menu
Every VirtualPBX user’s dashboard now lists “DND” text as a clickable button. Users are set to active by default, and when clicking the button, they can mark themselves away.
The DND button will change in appearance from a black-colored switch (active) to a grayed-out switch (away).
2. User Menu
System administrators can also mark users to Do Not Disturb within the User menu of the Dashboard.
When clicking the User Features button on any user listed within the User menu, an expanded list of options will appear.
The list now includes a Do Not Disturb function that opens up a simple menu with a single switch: Disabled or Enabled.
Like the button in a user’s header menu, the switch will change color to represent the individual’s status as active or away.
One other recent update to the VirtualPBX system is its Dashboard. All VirtualPBX administrators will have access to a screen that looks similar to what’s shown here.
The recent changes include an updated top-most navigation bar that includes the Do Not Disturb button and that relocates mentions of the Web Phone and Store buttons. Those can now be found in the Resources menu with an icon of a question mark.
The overall Dashboard look has also been cleaned up. It now shows a breakdown of a business’s total phone numbers with spare, assigned, toll-free, and DID numbers counted for a quick overview.
Check Out Your New VirtualPBX
We hope that the inclusion of a Do Not Disturb feature and the cleaning up of our Dashboard will make it even easier for you to manage your accounts.
If you’re already a VirtualPBX customer, have a look at your accounts and become familiar with the new layout. You can log in to see the changes. And our Support Guides can help if you’re new to VirtualPBX.
Posted on January 7, 2020 by Casey Houser
We’ve made some changes to our Web Phone recently to make managing your queue status in our ACD Queues easier.
Now any user can set themselves as Active or Away, or end their session altogether, with a single button click inside our Web Phone’s menu. No more toggling between your browser-based phone and the ACD Queues portal to manage your status.
Here’s a quick explainer of how it all works.
Our ACD Queues Feature
If you’re not yet familiar with ACD Queues, you should understand that it’s a feature available within our Advanced, Enterprise, and new Minute 500 and Minute 1000 plans.
This feature allows businesses to precisely route inbound callers to agents. It follows protocols like Round Robin to cycle callers to random agents or Least Calls to ring the agent who’s answered the least number of calls.
This works well for businesses that need to route calls to multiple agents but want to evenly distribute those those calls.
Previously, agents had to log in and out through the Queue itself. That’s no longer the case if they use the VirtualPBX Web Phone. Now they set their Queue status as Ready or Away or click End Session to log themselves out.
Take a Look at Web Phone Queue Status
In the sidebar menu of the Web Phone, a Begin Session button is prominently displayed for users who are part of a Queue. They can begin their session by clicking that button.
Once they’re logged in, an agent can then see their queue status in a drop-down menu. This menu starts off as Active but can be changed to Away or End Session by clicking the menu.
It only takes a few seconds for agents to change their status or completely exit a queue as necessary.
Save Time With Web Phone
The VirtualPBX Web Phone has gained a number of new features in recent months. When we upgraded to VirtualPBX Web Phone 2.0, we improved our user interface and added a voicemail management and a status indicator.
We also expanded Web Phone’s ability to accept new features like this ACD Queue Status selector.
This is just the beginning of what we have in store for our Web Phone. It’s accessible to all VirtualPBX customers, so we hope you can find use for it at your own business.
Posted on December 18, 2019 by Casey Houser
At VirtualPBX, we like to talk about the unlimited minutes available in our phone plans, but not every business needs that capability. Sometimes, a few hundred minutes is enough, so we have launched our new Minute Plans as an alternative to our traditional user-based plans.
Minute 300, Minute 500, and Minute 1000 give businesses a chance to save money without sacrificing essential features like Automated Attendant, Ring Groups, and Call Forwarding. These new plans start at $9.99 per month and are a great option for businesses that need reliable business phone service and powerful features, but which don’t need to complete a lot of calls.
Keep reading for a quick overview of our new offerings.
Features of Minute Plans
All our new Minute Plans come loaded with features. For any Minute tier you choose, you’ll receive:
- Web Phone for calling from your web browser on any device
- Automated Attendant to give your business a 24/7 presence
- Ring Groups to create department and other group extensions
- Audio Conferencing that brings together employees and customers
- Digital Faxing that makes sending/receiving documents easy
- Zapier Integration to link all your web-based applications
In addition, each Minute Plan offers its own level of included minutes and extra features. Business that need more minutes, or which desire an expanded range of features, can choose a higher-tiered plan to better suit their needs.
- Minute 300 offers businesses 300 local + toll-free minutes and includes 1 free phone number.
- Minute 500 allows for 500 minutes of calling and includes 2 free phone numbers. It also adds ACD Queues capability for advanced call routing.
- Minute 1000 boosts included minutes to 1000. It comes with 3 free phone numbers, Call Recording so no important conversations are lost, and Webhooks to wire your business phone system to internal applications.
Each comes with an expansive set of base features that make the Minute Plans affordable and useful for businesses that are just getting started or that experience a low call volume each month.
VirtualPBX CEO Paul Hammond spoke about this pairing of low cost and rich feature sets:
“Minute 300, 500, and 1000 give businesses an economical option for their voice service,” he said. “Now for only $9.99 a month, an entrepreneur can bootstrap their initial marketing efforts or provide a dedicated business number to their contacts. Entrepreneurs and small businesses can grow their operations and upgrade VirtualPBX service as necessary – to other Minute Plans or our unlimited-minutes Dash Plans.”
“Calls can be easily forwarded to personal devices. And Minute users can expect to receive the base set of powerful features we offer to all our clients.”
We’re offering these plans as a starting place for businesses that want to bootstrap their operations. We want to connect with organizations that don’t receive a lot of call volume yet still need reliable business calling features. And we’re making it possible for customers to expand their operations up Minute tiers and beyond.
Get Started With VirtualPBX Minute Plans
Interested businesses can speak to the VirtualPBX Sales team today. We’re happy to help you decide between minute-based and user-based plans to see what fits your business best.
There’s never any pressure to buy, and in starting a Free Demo of our Minute-Based or User-Based Plans, you can experience everything VirtualPBX offers with no expected commitment.