In the age of advancing technology, one would think that hooking up a fax machine to a stone age phone line would be a thing of the past for businesses. It's true that a lot of business is conducted electronically using email, file share services, and video chat services. However, depending on the nature of your business, you're still going to encounter clients who prefer a more personal form of service. These clients want to meet in person, conduct frequent phone calls, and yes, send and receive documents by fax. Again, because the majority of business is now conducted electronically, many businesses, especially young, small ones, don't invest in an extra phone line and a fax machine. Unfortunately, these businesses that rely on client satisfaction are at risk of losing lucrative business from clients who require sending and receiving regular faxes. Fortunately, it's online faxing vendors to the rescue.
Save Money, Work Faster
MetroFax allows you to send and receive faxes from anywhere and everywhere. You can keep your small or large business running smoothly no matter where you happen to be. You can even send multiple pages at the same time. If you view the website, you can provide your email address and receive a sample fax page from the company so you can see exactly how the system works. You can also enroll in a 30-day free trial so you can decide if MetroFax is right for you before you sign up for their monthly plan.
MetroFax provides faxing solutions for both small business and large corporations. You will be provided with a toll-free or local fax number that can be used by your customers and contacts at no cost. All you need to send and receive your faxes is Internet access.
Unfortunately, you can't schedule faxes ahead of time to be sent at a later date. This takes away from some of the convenience of sending faxes online since so many other things in business are able to be set ahead of time. However, it does not take away from the value of this service and the efficiency with which you can send faxes on a regular basis.
While there is a limit to the number of faxes you can send in a month without incurring additional charges, the MetroFax rate is lower than most other online faxing services. The company even provides a filtering service that allows you to block senders from flooding your email inbox with spam faxes. Compared to many other similar services, MetroFax is capable of saving you a great deal of time and money in the long run. It is fast, reliable, and incredibly easy to use.
Big Service For Your Big Business
Nextiva Fax is user-friendly and offers amazingly streamlined customer service. You can send and receive faxes from wherever you have a reliable Internet connection. Nextiva gives its customers a lot of options for faxing including customizing the service to specific needs. You get a wide range of packages and payment options to choose from so you can pick exactly what you will need to manage the faxing volume for your business. Nextiva even allows you to port your existing fax numbers to the service so you can streamline your service and not confuse your customers and contacts.
A huge pro of using Nextiva Fax is that you can schedule your faxes ahead of time. This is convenient if you are frequently out of the office or have a vacation planned but still need to be able to send and receive faxes. You can set up your fax queue and decide when your contacts will receive them.
Unfortunately, Nextiva Fax doesn't offer an international faxing feature, so it's probably not a great choice for businesses with a high volume of international clients.
Ultimately, Nextiva Fax is easy to afford and even easier to use. You can send and receive a grand total of 500 fax pages a month and only pay a very small fee for each page sent and received afterward. With this service, you will have direct access to a wide range of special features and faxing options. It is a practical solution for online faxing and will keep your business running smoothly no matter where you are.
Keep It Simple, Small Business Owner
You can set up your free 30-day trial for Internet faxing service with SmartFax (otherwise known as FaxNGo) through their website within minutes. Their website is easy to use and will get you started with sending and receiving faxes quickly. The price is affordable, and you have several options for online faxing plans. You will be allotted a standard number of faxes to send and receive each month and then pay only a few cents per page when you go over this limit.
The SmartFax support system is excellent, and you will receive high quality customer service if you decide to go with this company. Unfortunately, while it offers varying plans, you don't get a lot of features. It offers fewer pages sent and received per month than other services at a maximum of 250. The service is pretty standard, so if you are a small business who only needs to send a few faxes a week or less, this is probably a great choice for you. You will ultimately save money because you will not have to invest in an additional phone line or a fax machine and other equipment, especially if you only have a small number of clients who require faxes.
While the service itself is basic, it's practical and easy to use. You can store all of your necessary fax numbers in the system for quick access, and logging into the control panel is a cinch. You can choose from local and toll-free fax numbers for the ultimate in convenience for you and your clients. You can even send faxes to more than one person at a time.
Ditch The Fax Machine And Keep Your Privacy
RingCentral is a business phone support company that offers online faxing services as well. If you don't need phone service for your business and are only looking for a way to send and receive faxes online, you can choose the basic fax service package. This package does not come with any telephone support, but it will allow you to send and receive a maximum of 500 pages per month with no extra charge. If you choose, there are other more expensive online faxing plans available that do include phone support and other features. This is especially helpful if you run a large business and send and receive a high volume of faxes each day.
The website is easy to use, and you can check out the free demo of RingCentral services in exchange for your email address and information. You can use the company's website to send and receive faxes, or you can set up the services to send and receive faxes directly through your email address. You won't pay any setup fees for this service and can get started sending and receiving faxes faster than with most online faxing services.
This is an especially helpful service because you can store up to 200 previous faxes and messages in the system for future reference. You even have the ability to save them to your desktop. If you use Outlook frequently, RingCentral fax service is set up to seemlessly integrate with Microsoft Office and Microsoft Outlook. Your RingCentral account will be password protected so not just anyone can send and receive faxes through your business. The privacy of your business and your clients is fully protected.
Get Your Head In The Cloud
EFax is one of the best online faxing services available. Sending a fax is as simple as uploading a document, choosing the recipient, and sending! With eFax, you will have a reliable faxing service that goes straight to your email or eFax account, and your customers will never encounter that frustrating busy signal. You will also get a lifetime of cloud storage so that you can save and access your documents from anywhere you happen to be. You will get your faxes directly to your email inbox and can access them from your computer and any mobile device. This means you can even send and receive faxes from your tablet or smartphone.
Unfortunately, eFax has a low monthly page limit at 150 incoming and 150 outgoing. It is one of the lowest limits among the top online faxing companies. The cost per page for exceeding the limit is one of the highest among top companies. However, the available features and simple user interface make up for the small page limit and higher price.
If you are a small business with limited faxing needs but appreciate flexibility, convenience, and advanced features, eFax is likely a great choice for you. If you plan to use the service on a long-term basis, you can sign up for a yearly plan and save some of the cost.
The eFax program is compatible with Microsoft Outlook and other popular email providers allowing you to send and receive your faxes from any device as long as you are somewhere with a reliable Internet connection. You can even use the digitalized signature feature to sign faxes online so you can bypass the inconvenience of printing, signing, scanning, attaching, then faxing through email.
If you choose eFax as your online faxing service, you will also receive high quality, twenty-four-hour customer support through phone or email. Troubleshooting any issues is a cinch, and presenting problems are resloved quickly.
Sending Faxes Online: In-Depth
Advantages of Online Faxing
There are a lot of advantages to using an online faxing service that go beyond saving the cost of an additional phone line and expensive fax machine.
You will save money on printer ink and paper. That might seem to be a small concern, but depending on how often you need to fax, those costs can really add up.
You will save time. It's time you would waste going to the fax machine, dialing the number and waiting and waiting and waiting for that fax to send. With online faxing, you're already at your computer. It only takes a few points and clicks to send a fax, and then you're back on task.
Online faxing contributes to saving the environment. With so many small and large businesses "going green," online faxing can only help the cause. If you invest in an online faxing service, you will avoid wasting paper which saves the trees and reduces logging which then contributes more oxygen and lessens energy and water consumption. So, use online faxing, and save the world!
Online Faxing For The Modern Era
We have already pointed out how technological communication has become the norm for conducting business. More and more people are telecommuting or running businesses out of their homes thanks to the convenience of the Internet.
Taking this one step further, mobile technology has made it possible to not only work from home but to work from anywhere using a mobile phone, tablet, or laptop. You can keep all of the necessary work files right in your pocket and only need a reliable Internet connection to communicate with your clients. That's where online faxing is even more beneficial. Not only can you send and receive faxes from your home or office computer, you can do so from your mobile phone or tablet while you're waiting for your flight or lounging on the beach.
Using online faxing is far more secure than other methods of electronic communication. Online faxing services provide you with a secure account login and password so that only you can access your important documents. You get decide who receives your faxes and who gets to send faxes to you. Some services allow you to keep all of your files backed up onto a cloud service so you can access them from anywhere using your password. Online faxing can go directly through your private email keeping documents safe from prying eyes.
Big Industries Still Use Faxing
There are five major industries that still using faxing on a regular basis even though many of their systems have been updated to modern technology. They are:
If you deal with any of these four industrtires on a regular basis through your business, it's probably a good idea to consider an online faxing service.
Online Faxing Options
When you are choosing an online faxing service, consider the range of options available so you can make a decision based on what is best for your business.
Many small and large business want an online faxing service that easily integrates with Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Office.
Some faxing services offer mobile alerts and the ability to schedule faxes to send at a specific time and date.
Many business want the ability to apply digital signatures to eliminate the need for printing, signing, and scanning to save time and money.
Many services will provide you with the option to send faxes to multiple recipients at one time and to automatically forward incoming faxes to specific email addresses.
Consider the online fax service's security features and policies.
Also find out the maximum number of pages you can send and receive per month without incurring extra costs. If you are a large business that sends multiple faxes in a day, you will want to sign up with an online faxing service with a high page limit.
Most services offer you the option of a toll-free or local fax number.
Consider the number of faxes your chosen service allows you to store and archive in the system and on the cloud.
Finally, make sure you consider overall cost and the quality of customer service you will receive. If you pay a high price per month for many additional features, you will need high quality customer service including things like 24-hour customer support by telephone and web chat. Make sure you thoroughly browse the vendor's website including the frequently asked questions and troubleshooting sections.
History of Faxing
Faxing has been around for nearly 150 years, and despite what many in the world of business and technology tend to think, it's not going away anytime soon.
The first fax was sent by Alexander Bain in 1846. Faxing was initially referred to as "electric printing" and later called "facsimiles." This word was later shortened ot "fax."
The first official fax machine created in 1951 was an improvement on the original invention and developed by Frederick Bakewell, an English physicist.
An Italian physicist named Giovanni Caselli later invented a machine that he called the "Pantelgraph." This machine gained a lot of steam and became popular in Europe. Systems were quickly created among multiple European cities, and the first one was built in France in 1865 between the cities of Lyon and Paris.
Once Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone in 1875, phone systems were used to revolutionize the fax industry.
Fast forward to 1964 when Xerox created the first commercial fax machine and paved the way for faxing as we know it today.
It wasn't clear as of yet, but the invention of the Internet in the 1980s would eventually change communication and reduce the need for faxing. While faxing has ultimately seen a decline in popularity, there are still plenty of business owners and clients that see merit in using faxing to communicate, especially when it becomes necessary to sign documents or share sensitive information electronically.
Faxing Isn't Going Away Any Time Soon
Faxing as a form of business communication appears to be here to stay for the foreseeable future. Online faxing has combined the convenience of modern technological communication with the security, confidentiality, and personal service of faxing. You can utilize your current resources without adding new equipment while still meeting the needs of your customers and clients. Online faxing allows businesses to seemlessly bridge the gap between "old school" faxing technology and fast-paced mobile business.