An online fax service allows you to send and receive faxes from your computer or smartphone. In this guide, we compare 3 of the best online fax services: RingCentral Fax, Nextiva vFax, and HelloFax. We also uncover the best free fax services for sending/receiving occasional faxes.
Best Online Fax Service: RingCentral Fax
We recommend RingCentral Fax because they offer the best set of features for the price (including digital signatures and cloud storage integrations) and offer a large monthly allotment, starting at 500 pages/month.
RingCentral Fax vs. Nextiva vFax vs. HelloFax
|Basic Plan Price|
|$95.88 per year or $9.99 per month.||$59.40 per year or $8.95 per month.||$99.99 per year or
$9.99 per month
|Basic Plan Pages Allowed||500/month send or receive ($0.06 per page overage)||500/month send or receive ($0.03 per page overage)||300/month send or receive ($0.05 per page overage)|
|Free Trial||Yes, 7 Days||Yes, 30 Days||Yes, 30 Days|
|Keep Existing Fax Number||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Sent / Received Fax Alerts?||Text & Email||Text & Email||Email Only|
|Cloud Storage Integration|
|Box, Dropbox, or Google Drive||None||Box, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, and Evernote|
|Email and Live Chat for basic plan.||Phone & Email||Email Only|
Best Online Fax Service Overall: RingCentral Fax
RingCentral Online Fax is a good balance of professional features and value. For $9.99/month (or less if you buy a year upfront), you can send or receive up to 500 pages per month. This a better value than it’s closest competitor HelloFax, which only offers 300 pages for the same price.
RingCentral Fax offers unique online fax features you won’t find from the value-driven option Nextiva. You can add electronic signatures to your faxes, which is helpful if your documents require your own signature in addition to the recipient’s. RingCentral supports international faxing and integrates with cloud storage services Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive. This allows you to easily attach documents, or automatically store faxes to your preferred cloud drive.
The main downside to RingCentral is the price. While it’s not particularly expensive at $9.99/month, there are free services available if you only need to send/receive occasional faxes. Nextiva is also a less expensive (but stripped-down) option.
We should also note that RingCentral is primarily a business phone service provider. Faxing is included free with a phone service plan, so it’s worth considering a phone service package if you need both.
Best Budget Online Fax Service: Nextiva vFax
At just $59.40/year for 500 pages per month, Nextiva costs about 40% less than RingCentral. If you can do without e-signatures, cloud storage integrations, and international faxing (which are not supported) Nextiva is the way to go.
That’s not to call Nextiva a primitive fax service. It has many of the same conveniences as RingCentral or HelloFax, like the ability to send faxes from your email by using a special email forwarding address. Plus, you can receive SMS alerts when a fax comes in (which RingCentral offers, but HelloFax does not.)
One downside to keep in mind is that month-to-month pricing is not significantly cheaper than the other services. If you don’t want to pay a full year upfront, it’s $8.95/month (compared to $9.99/month for RingCentral and HelloFax.)
Also, like RingCentral, Nextiva is primarily a phone service provider and offers both faxing and voice at a discounted price. Check out our comparison of Nextiva and RingCentral phone packages here on FitSmallBusiness.com.
Best Online Fax Service For Integrations: HelloFax
Like RingCentral, HelloFax offers electronic signatures and integrates with cloud storage programs. They do esignatures a little better, however, since it’s powered by their sister company HelloSign (you can actually draw signatures, rather than having to upload a bitmap).
Plus, they integrate with a wider range of cloud storage programs, including Box, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, and Evernote. This makes it easy to send documents saved in your storage drive, or automatically save your faxes.
Best Free Online Fax Services
|Send or Receive Faxes?||Send Only||Send Only||Receive Only|
|Free Account Limitations||Send up to 2 faxes per day, 3 pages max||Send up to 5 faxes per day, 3 pages max||Receive up to 50 pages per month|
|Are Faxes Ad-Free?||Yes, faxes are completely ad-free||No, faxes contain FaxZero ad on coversheet and on header of each page||Not applicable (can’t send faxes with free account)|
|Support||FAQs, Phone and Email listed||FAQs and Email Support||Knowledgebase and Email Support|
If you just need to send occasional faxes, try GotFreeFax.com. They let you send up to 2 faxes per day (each with up to 3 pages). Unlike other free services, they don’t display any ads on your faxes. Your document will look formal and professional. FaxZero has a higher limit (up to 5 faxes per day) but places a small ad on your coversheet and on the header of each page.
If you need to receive a fax rather than send one, try FaxBetter. You’ll get your own fax number and can receive up to 50 pages per month completely free. The downside is you’ll lose your fax number if you don’t receive a fax at least once every 7 days.
Detailed Comparison: RingCentral Fax vs. Nextiva vFax vs. HelloFax
For the rest of this guide, we’ll compare the 3 paid fax services in more detail:
Nextiva is the least expensive online fax service, starting at $59.40 per year. If you prefer to pay month-to-month, however, all 3 services are priced about the same:
Some online fax providers allow you to add quick digital signatures to your documents. This is helpful if you’re sending a contract that requires your signature. Without digital signature capability, you would need to print out the document, sign it by hand, then re-scan it before faxing. (Or use separate digital signature software.)
If you’re interested in using digital signature software in place of online faxing, check out our article Best Electronic Signature Software – SignNow vs. Docusign vs. Hellosign. Your contact receives the document via email and can add a digital signature directly from their web browser.
Some of the online fax programs we reviewed integrate with additional business/productivity software. Here’s how they compare:
The Bottom Line
If you just need to send/receive occasional faxes, you can usually get by with a free online fax service. If you need to fax regularly, however, we recommend RingCentral. Though pricing is slightly higher than Nextiva vFax, you get digital signature support, integrations with DropBox, Box, and Google Drive, and can send faxes internationally.
If you need phone service in addition to online faxing, be sure to check out our guide to the best small business phone service providers. Both Nextiva and RingCentral offer phone and online faxing in one package at a discounted price.