Voice-over-internet-protocol (VoIP) phone services are internet-based alternatives to traditional landline phones with features like auto attendant, voicemail, and customer relationship management integrations. We looked at a variety of VoIP providers and compared them on price, features, ease of use, and more to determine the top six, including the overall best VoIP for small business.
Top 6 VoIP Providers for Small Business 2019
|Business VoIP Providers||Best For|
|Nextiva||(Best Overall) Businesses that want the best combination of price and features|
|RingCentral||Larger companies with high call volumes that need enterprise-level features|
|8X8||Businesses that need unlimited international calling and SMS messaging|
|Vonage||Consultants and teams that want collaboration tools like video and chat|
|Freshcaller||Organizations that want a free solution and custom inbound call greetings|
|Grasshopper||Solopreneurs who want a business number on their personal device|
How We Evaluated Small Business VoIP Providers
The best VoIP for small business should be affordable, with plans at price points that accommodate a range of budgets. The service should be easy to set up and use, and also backed by reliable customer support. Features like auto attendants, voicemail, and customer relationship management (CRM) tool integration should be intuitive, user-friendly, and help businesses manage calls efficiently.
Therefore, we evaluated business VoIP phone service based on:
- Price: Each solution’s pricing tiers and packages were evaluated.
- Set up: Each system was reviewed for ease of setup and whether it required upfront costs for equipment and hardware.
- Ease of use: We assessed how easy the service is to use.
- Call management: The types of call management tools each provider offered, such as call transfer, hold, screening, and park were reviewed.
- Auto attendant: We noted whether the business VoIP provider offers an automated attendant for greeting and routing callers.
- CRM integration: We assessed whether each provider offered integration tools for CRM platforms for managing customer relationships.
- Call quality: Online customer reviews of each business VoIP provider’s call sound and quality were considered.
- Customer support: We evaluated the types of online and live customer service support each provider offers
Based on our research, we recommend Nextiva as the best VoIP for small business because it offers the best set of features, including unlimited domestic calling as well as free phone numbers at an affordable price.
Best Overall VoIP for Small Business: Nextiva
Nextiva is a business VoIP provider that ranks as our top business phone system with features like unlimited calling, auto attendants, voicemail-to-email transcription, and conference calling from $19.95 per user, per month. It’s right for solopreneurs and small business owners who want the best combination of features and service at an affordable price. Click here for a free demo.
Nextiva offers three service plans with volume discounts based on the number of users. Pro starts at $19.95 per month and goes up to $35, Pro Plus costs between $22.95 and $38 per month, and Enterprise starts at $29.95 per month. Additional cost savings are available with long-term contracts and prepaid agreements.
Nextiva Tiered Features
|Professionally Recorded Greetings|
|Free Local & Toll-free Number|
|Analytics & Reporting|
Nextiva’s Office Pro package includes unlimited domestic calling, free local and toll-free phone numbers, and an auto attendant. This tier also offers voicemail-to-email transcription and a cloud private branch exchange (PBX) to receive and route incoming calls. With pricing that starts at $19.95, Nextiva Office Pro is a good fit for small companies and teams that want basic business VoIP phone service.
However, this tier lacks the conference bridge, mobile apps, and call recording features found in upper levels. It’s also missing features that Nextiva’s close competitor, Vonage, offers in its first-level package like short message service (SMS) and messaging. However, this plan is priced similarly to other tier one packages on our list.
Office Pro Plus
Nextiva’s Office Pro Plus package adds SMS messaging, one professionally recorded greeting, and a conference bridge for calls with up to nine participants, with pricing that starts at $22.95 per user, per month. This tier also includes mobile apps, and Team Presence, allowing users to set their availability status within the Nextiva app. The Office Pro Plus plan is a good fit for business owners and teams who want to stay connected while outside the office.
This package lacks the reporting, call recording and CRM features offered at Nextiva’s highest tier level. It also doesn’t offer a complete set of call center tools like Freshcaller. However, unlike Freshcaller, Nextiva offers users unlimited SMS messaging.
Nextiva’s Office Enterprise business VoIP plan includes inbound and outbound call recording and three professionally recorded greetings. It also adds CRM features and tools for analytics and reporting with pricing that begins at $29.95 per user, per month. Office Enterprise is a good solution for business owners that want to capture call data for quality assurance and strategic planning.
On the whole, Nextiva offers most of the standard phone system features business should expect from a VoIP phone service provider, but Nextiva’s primary differentiator from other solutions is the high standard of customer support it delivers. New customers are assigned a single point of contact that remains in place from setup and training to ongoing support and is a reason why it was named as our top pick in our comparison for business phone systems.
What’s Missing From Nextiva
Nextiva delivers the best balance between features and price. However, this VoIP phone system is missing a few of the more advanced features that RingCentral offers, such as unlimited video meetings with screen sharing, integration with Microsoft, Google, Box, and Dropbox, or toll-free minutes.
Nextiva Customer Support
Nextiva’s customer support services include an online ticketing system, live chat, and comprehensive knowledge base. Phone support is also available from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mountain time Monday through Friday and 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
What Our Readers Say About Nextiva
Our readers give Nextiva positive ratings with an average of 4 out of 5 stars. Customers are happy with Nextiva’s customer service, saying that representatives are helpful and professional. However, users also say Nextiva is difficult to install and use, and they complain of frequent downtimes. For more reviews, visit our Nextiva user reviews page.
Where to Find Nextiva
Businesses that want an affordable VoIP business phone system with the best combination of standard features and reliable customer support should check out Nextiva. The company offers a free demo of its product when you contact the sales team. Visit Nextiva’s website for details.
Best Business VoIP Service for Large Call Volumes: RingCentral
RingCentral is a business VoIP phone service with unlimited calling and a multilevel auto attendant. With pricing from $29.99 per user, per month and advanced features, as well as its scalability and generous toll-free minutes, set it apart from other solutions. RingCentral is good for large sales teams or call centers with high call volumes that want enterprise-level features.
RingCentral’s prices for up to 10 users range from $29.99 to $39.99 per month. Unlimited user plans range from $34.99 to $44.99 per month. All plans have an annual contract option for a discount on the cost per user. Customers who pay by the month can cancel any time without penalty.
RingCentral Tiered Features
|Unlimited Audio & Video Meetings|
|Visual Voicemail & Voicemail-to-Email|
|Integrations With Microsoft, Google, Box & Okta|
|Call Log Reports|
|Multilevel Auto Attendant|
|Automatic Call Recording|
RingCentral Essentials includes 100 toll-free minutes and unlimited calling for $29.99 per user, per month. Companies looking for an alternative to GoToMeeting’s expensive service will enjoy this tier’s unlimited audio and video meetings for groups of up to four people. This level also includes visual voicemail, voicemail-to-email, integration with Microsoft, Google, Box and, Okta and is right for small teams and businesses that want no-frills VoIP phone service.
However, this tier doesn’t offer a large bucket of toll-free minutes or the multilevel auto attendant features found in the higher level packages. It’s also missing CRM integration and media storage found in 8X8’s entry-level package and other RingCentral alternatives. However, not all VoIP phone systems for small business offer basic packages with audio and video conferencing, which is a nice feature of this plan.
RingCentral Standard includes 1,000 toll-free minutes and adds a multilevel auto attendant with several call routing features, including the ability to direct calls to multiple locations or external phone numbers, for $34.99 per user, per month. This business VoIP plan also includes call log reports to track inbound and outbound calls.
This tier doesn’t offer as many toll-free minutes as the higher-level packages automatic or the call recording feature found at the next level. It also lacks an operator switchboard as offered by 8X8’s mid-level plan. However, this tier offers more toll-free minutes than other VoIP providers. RingCentral Standard is right for sales teams and call centers that want a VoIP phone service with inbound call management tools.
RingCentral Premium is designed for businesses with larger teams or higher call volumes and includes 2,500 toll-free minutes as well as unlimited audio and video meetings for up to 100 people. In addition, this tier also adds automatic call recording and voicemail transcription-to-text for $44.99 per user, per month.
Overall, while RingCentral offers many of the same features as other business VoIP phone service providers, its unlimited video meetings, generous toll-free minutes, and integrations with business apps work together to give small businesses more options to serve customers better. RingCentral Premium is a good solution for larger call centers and business that want digital records of calls for quality assurance, training, and compliance purposes.
What’s Missing From RingCentral
As the most fully featured VoIP phone service that we reviewed, RingCentral isn’t missing any of the key features of its competitors. However, this comes at a higher cost. What RingCentral is lacking is affordability for smaller teams as it’s the highest priced service we reviewed and costs more than solutions like Nextiva that offers similar features.
RingCentral Customer Support
RingCentral offers an online knowledge base, phone support from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern time, online chat 24/7, and ticket requests. RingCentral also offers weekly webinars on a range of topics for new users who are looking for more self-directed service options.
What Our Readers Say About RingCentral
Our readers give RingCentral positive ratings with an average of 4 out of 5 stars. Customers say RingCentral has all the features that a phone system for small business needs. However, some users are disappointed with RingCentral’s customer service, reporting long phone queues and email response times. For more reviews, visit our RingCentral user reviews page.
Where to Find RingCentral
Call centers and sales teams that want a full-featured business VoIP phone service should look at RingCentral. The company offers a free trial of its product and 30-day, money-back guarantee when you purchase an account. Check out RingCentral’s website for details.
Best Business VoIP Service for International Calls: 8×8
8×8 is a business VoIP phone service provider with service plans from $28 per user, per month. What sets it apart from the competition is its unlimited international calling plans, supporting up to 47 countries. Although not the most economical option on our list, 8×8 is good for businesses with international clients, customers, or vendors.
8×8 offers three packages, all with international calling. The X2 plan is $28 per user, per month with calling to 14 countries. The X5 plan is $38 per user, per month with a calling radius of 32 countries. The X8 plan is $60 per user, per month with a calling zone that includes 47 countries.
8×8 Tiered Features
|Unlimited Calling Zone|
|Audio & Video Conferencing|
|Interactive Voice Response|
8×8’s X2 tier includes a phone number, unlimited calling to 14 countries, audio and video conferencing for up to 100 people, and 1GB of media storage for $28 per user, per month. This level also includes voicemail, CRM integration team messaging, and an auto attendant. 8×8’s X2 is a good choice for sales teams, consultants, and business owners that want basic business VoIP phone service with CRM tools.
This plan is missing the larger storage and advanced analytics offered with the upper-level packages. It also lacks the voicemail-to-email transcription featured with Nextiva’s basic plan. However, 8×8 pulls ahead of competitors like Nextiva because it is the only VoIP provider on our list to include unlimited international calling with a tier-one plan which may be a more valuable feature for some companies.
8×8’s X3 plan includes everything in the entry-level plan plus 5GB of media storage for $35 per user, per month. It also increases unlimited international calling to 32 countries. 8×8’s X3 plan is right for businesses that want a larger international calling radius and need more storage.
This tier lacks advanced reporting and interactive voice response tools offered at the premium level. It’s also missing the call recording feature offered with Freshcaller’s mid-level plan. However, with an even wider scope for international calling the lack of those features may not be a deal breaker for organizations with overseas customers and clients.
8×8’s X5 package includes unlimited international calling to 47 countries and an interactive voice response (IVR) system to route inbound calls based on the caller’s response to voice prompts. This $55 per user, per month plan also features advanced reporting to provide data on contact center, service quality, and supervisor analytics. 8×8’s X5 plan is best for larger businesses, sales, and call centers with a high volume of customer calls.
8X8 sets itself apart from its competitors with generous international calling plans to more than 40 countries. For small businesses who will use their phone system to make a lot of international calls, this business VoIP phone system provider may offer significant cost savings over the long-term when compared to options like Nextiva ― RingCentral.
What’s Missing From 8×8
8×8 is missing integration with business and CRM apps like Dropbox and Salesforce. 8×8’s upper tiers also lack the affordability of some of its competitors, but businesses that make many international calls may prefer an unlimited global calling plan over the per-minute rates offered by VoIP providers like RingCentral.
8×8 Customer Support
8×8 offers a comprehensive online knowledge base, live chat, and phone-based support. 8×8 also crowdsources part of their support team from among their most active power users, who then share their first-hand insights, experience, and knowledge of the service with other customers.
What Our Readers Say About 8×8
Our readers give 8×8 a mix of ratings with an average of 3 out of 5 stars. Users say compared to other VoIP business phone systems, 8×8 offers more features for a lower price. However, some customers report generally unreliable service, from phone quality to customer support. For more reviews, visit our 8X8 user reviews page.
Where to Find 8×8
Businesses that make and receive a lot of international calls and want the predictable billing that comes with unlimited calling plans should consider 8×8. Call the company’s toll-free number to sign up for an account or request a customized quote through 8×8’s website.
Best Business VoIP Service for Collaboration: Vonage
Vonage is a business VoIP phone service provider offering unlimited calling, video meetings, and chat with pricing from $19.99 per month. This is the best VoIP for consultants and sales teams using multiple collaboration techniques to stay connected. Vonage’s pricing is industry standard but a la carte features, while flexible, could quickly add to the bottom line.
Vonage offers three packages. Mobile starts at $19.99 per month, Premium begins at $29.99 per month, and Advanced starts at $39.99 per month. Pricing is per user, and prices decrease as more users are added. Plans include unlimited calling, text, and more. A la carte options are also available for added customization.
A la carte features include:
- Local phone number: $9.99 per month
- Toll-free phone number: $39.99 per month
- Toll-free paperless fax number: $14.99 per month
- Automatic call recording: $49.99 per month
- Conference bridge: $14.99 per month, plus 3 cents per minute
Vonage Tiered Features
|Music On Hold|
|On-demand Call Recording|
Ranked as one of our best VoIP apps for mobile, Vonage Mobile includes unlimited calling, SMS messaging, voicemail, and team messaging. This level also includes call management tools, call screening, and call continuity to prevent service interruption during a power or internet outage. Vonage Mobile pricing starts at $19.99 per user, per month and is the best VoIP for teams without a central office relying on their cellphone plan for all calls.
This tier doesn’t include CRM integration, video conferencing, and the multilevel auto attendant offered at the next level. It also lacks a free local and toll-free phone number offered by Nextiva’s first-level price plan. However, a local phone number is available for an additional $9.99 per month, and a toll-free number is available for an additional $39.99 per month.
Vonage Premium adds video conferencing, chat, and file sharing through Amazon Chime to desktop and mobile devices for up to 100 people with pricing that starts at $29.99 per user, per month. This level also includes a multilevel auto attendant and CRM integration for Salesforce, SugarCRM, Zoho, and more. Vonage Premium is right for companies that want a business VoIP phone system that communicates with their business apps and customer relationship tools.
This tier lacks the call recording and visual voicemail offered at the premium level. It’s also missing a conference bridge and online faxing offered standard by Nextiva. However, both features are available for an additional $14.99 per month, plus 3 cents per minute $14.99 per month, respectively.
Vonage Advanced adds visual voicemail and 15 hours per month of on-demand call recording, allowing employees to decide when they want to record calls. It also includes “call group” to forward calls to multiple extensions simultaneously. At $39.99 per user, per month, Vonage Advanced is a good choice for business owners that want assistance setting up new VoIP phone service.
Altogether, Vonage offers many of the same call management features as its competitors, whether standard or a la carte. However, its partnership with Amazon Chime that integrates communication and collaboration tools with Vonage’s VoIP phone service sets the solution apart as a complete VoIP provider for business collaboration solution.
What’s Missing From Vonage
Vonage is missing a few of the more advanced features that Nextiva and RingCentral offers, such as unlimited video meetings with screen sharing, business app integration, and toll-free minutes. While Vonage is more affordable than RingCentral, it’s more expensive than Nextiva and significantly more expensive than 8×8.
Vonage Customer Support
Vonage offers phone-based support Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern time and 24/7 emergency on-call support. In addition, they offer a business support website with an online knowledge base, getting started guides, technical troubleshooting, and a guide for many of their individual features.
What Our Readers Say About Vonage
Our reader reviews are mixed with an average of 2 out of 5 stars. Some customers say Vonage’s call quality is better than other small business VoIP systems out there. However, others report that customer support is slow to respond to users who do experience call quality issues. For more reviews, visit our Vonage user reviews page.
Where to Find Vonage
Organizations and teams that rely on collaboration tools like video meetings, file sharing, and chat should consider Vonage. The company offers a 14-day free trial to try before signing up for an account. Visit Vonage’s website for details.
Best Business VoIP Service for Free Calls: Freshcaller
Freshcaller is the best VoIP for small business with a free entry-level tier and paid plans from $19 per user, per month. It also features custom greetings, caller ID, and call center tools. Freshcaller is a good match for small businesses and sales teams with no room in the budget for a paid VoIP plan.
Freshcaller offers three service plans. Sprout is free, Blossom costs $25 per user, per month, and Garden is $49 per user, per month. All plans include per-minute call rates that start at 16 cents. Local virtual phone numbers are $1 per month, and toll-free numbers are $2 per month.
Freshcaller Tiered Features
|Basic Call Queues|
|Call Forward to Mobile Phone|
|Advanced Call Queues|
|Business Hours Call Routing|
|Non-business Hours Routing|
|Advanced Call Metrics|
|Custom Call Center Reports|
Freshcaller’s free Sprout plan supports an unlimited number of users and includes basic call queues and custom greetings. It also features ringtone customization and call forwarding to mobile phones. With its limited number of features at this level, the Sprout plan is best for solopreneurs, freelancers, and emerging businesses who don’t have room in the budget to pay for a VoIP service plan.
This level doesn’t include voicemail or call recording as offered by the next tier. It also lacks the variety of call management tools offered by Grasshopper’s VoIP packages. However, Freshcaller is the only VoIP phone system for small business that offers a free plan with a more robust set of features than free VoIP services like Google Voice and other alternatives.
Freshcaller’s Blossom plan adds call center tools like call routing during business hours, advanced call queues, and voicemail for $19 per user, per month. It also includes call recording for training and quality assurance purposes. The Blossom tier is great for organizations that want greater control over how incoming calls are managed.
This tier doesn’t include conference calling that comes with the upper-level plan, which could be a deal breaker for businesses looking for alternatives to Join.me or other call conferencing services. It also doesn’t feature a robust multilevel auto attendant like RingCentral. However, The Blossom plan is on par with RingCentral’s entry-level price plan and also includes a call center system.
Freshcaller’s Garden plan is $40 per user, per month adds after-hours hours call routing and custom call center reports with details on important call data like queue time, hold time, talk time, and more. The Garden tier also features conference calling and call monitoring tools to increase agent productivity and manage calls remotely. This plan is the right choice for sales teams that want a VoIP phone system with a complete call center system package.
Unlike Grasshopper, this plan doesn’t feature advanced voicemail tools like voicemail-to-email, which are helpful for managing voicemail messages at times when listening to voicemails or returning phone calls isn’t possible. However, Grasshopper doesn’t offer any call center tools, and its call routing options are limited.
What’s Missing From Freshcaller
Freshcaller does not include phone numbers in the cost of its service plans. However, they are available for an additional fee. Local phone numbers are $1 each per month, and toll-free numbers are $2 per month. Businesses that need a VoIP provider that includes a local or toll-free number should look at Nextiva or Grasshopper instead.
What Users Think About Freshcaller
Online reviews of Freshcaller are favorable overall. Customers say the platform is easy to use and setting up custom greetings and call routing rules is a breeze. However, some users say the Freshcaller dashboard can be somewhat cluttered.
Where to Find Freshcaller
Organizations looking for the best VoIP for small business with a free service plan should give Freshcaller a try. The company offers a 14-day free trial that includes the features of all its service tiers. Visit Freshcaller to learn more.
Best Business VoIP Service With Virtual Phone Numbers: Grasshopper
Grasshopper is a VoIP phone system and virtual phone number service that gives you a business line on your personal device. It features call forwarding, texting, and voicemail transcription with pricing from $29 per month. It’s best for solopreneurs or traveling salespeople who want a business phone number they can use on an existing mobile device or landline.
Grasshopper offers three plans that all include the same features, like a local phone number, unlimited calling, and voicemail for one monthly price. The $29 Solo plan includes one number and three extensions, the $49 Partner plan has three numbers and six extensions, and the $89 Small Business plan includes five numbers and unlimited extensions.
Grasshopper, which ranks as a top cheap VoIP service, features include unlimited domestic calling, desktop, and mobile apps, call forwarding, Wi-Fi calling, inbound fax, business texting, and voicemail and voicemail transcription. Additional phone numbers are available for a small fee through the customer support team, and international calling is available at a per-minute rate based on location.
Grasshopper’s automated attendant answers inbound calls, then forwards it to the employee or the department the customer or client is trying to reach. Similar to Nextiva and 8×8’s auto attendant, users can record personalized messages and announcements via Grasshopper’s desktop app to use with the system’s custom phone greeting feature that plays automatically when a customer calls.
Phone Numbers and Extensions
Grasshopper accounts include one to five phone numbers and a bundle of extensions, depending on the plan selected. Like Freshcaller and other Grasshopper alternatives, additional phone numbers are available for a small fee, and extra extensions can be added by contacting customer support.
Grasshopper’s call management tools include call forwarding, call transfer, call block, and custom call control schedules for your business hours. Like Vonage, Grasshopper also offers call screening. This feature allows you to hear the caller’s name or number before deciding whether to take the call, which is helpful if you take personal and business calls on the same phone.
Grasshopper Customer Support
Grasshopper provides a comprehensive online knowledge base, which is organized by the service’s most common features and frequently asked questions. For more personal assistance, Grasshopper also offers telephone support ― although they don’t specify hours of availability ― and the option to open a ticketed case should your issue require escalation.
What’s Missing From Grasshopper
Grasshopper lacks advanced calling features that larger VoIP providers like Nextiva or Vonage offer, but this is reflected in Grasshopper’s lower cost. However, because Grasshopper is a virtual phone service, the most significant missing feature is the phone service itself. That means you’ll use your mobile phone plan’s minutes in addition to Grasshopper’s.
What Our Readers Say About Grasshopper
Our readers give Grasshopper mixed reviews with an average of 3 out of 5 stars. Most customers are satisfied with Grasshopper’s pricing and customer support. However, some reviewers say it took days or weeks to get their phone number back from Grasshopper after canceling their account. For more reviews, visit our Grasshopper user reviews page.
Where to Find Grasshopper
Solopreneurs and very small business owners who want a VoIP provider that offers virtual business phone numbers for personal phones should check out Grasshopper. Call the sales team or visit the company website for more information or to try Grasshopper with a 30-day money back guarantee.
How VoIP Works
VoIP technology transmits your voice as data over the internet instead of over copper wire used in landline phone systems. Digital voice data converts to a regular signal automatically when calling a regular telephone so VoIP calls can be made to any phone number including mobile devices and long distance numbers. VoIP technology works the same way as the audio versions of apps like Facebook Messenger and Skype.
What to Look for in a VoIP Provider
VoIP phone service is packed with tools to help small businesses establish and nurture communications with customers. From CRM integration to multilevel auto attendants, it’s important to choose the right features to help your business succeed. However, the best VoIP for small business phone service should also be easy to use and have exceptional customer support that’s easy to access to keep potential downtime to a minimum.
VoIP phone systems for small businesses are an affordable option to replace landline phones. They offer features like unlimited calling, local and toll-free phone numbers, text messaging, and an auto attendant that enhance communication with customers in ways traditional phones can’t.
Businesses that want the best VoIP for small business that’s easy to use and has a great combination of features at an affordable price should check out Nextiva. The company offers a free demo of its product when you contact the sales team. Visit Nextiva’s website for details.