The choice that businesses now face is not whether or not to choose VoIP, but rather, which business VoIP provider to choose. Two of the leading VoIP providers for businesses of every size are Vonage and RingCentral. Vonage Business is our preferred premium VoIP product for businesses of every kind looking for 10+ phone lines. RingCentral gets the edge for smaller businesses that need fewer VoIP lines. Read on for our detailed comparison of these two business VoIP leaders.
Vonage Business VoIP vs. RingCentral Business VoIP
How did we decide who's better? We looked at 4 crucial factors common to all business VoIP - basic features, integration, customer support, and pricing.
These features are absolutely essential for any business VoIP package:
Virtual Receptionist. This feature means that the call is answered by an automatic switchboard. You get a greeting and are given options on which department you want to speak with. It saves time and money for your company, reducing the need for extra reception workers. Both Vonage and RingCentral provide this for free, so it’s a draw on virtual receptionists. No additional cost.
Time-Based Call Routing. This incredibly useful feature allows you to route inbound calls to wherever you are, based upon what day and time it is. For example, you might want your calls routed to a particular member of staff on a particular night. The great news is that both companies provide this for free in their packages. No additional cost.
Toll Free Numbers. An 800 number can add as much as 30% more volume to your inbound inquiries. For many businesses, they're indispensable inbound marketing tools, encouraging potential customers to get in contact without losing out on the call cost. Toll free numbers are offered by both Vonage and RingCentral, but they do charge a monthly fee for the number. Additional cost $30-$39.99.
Call Transfer. You’ve got someone on the line, but you think your colleague can help them better. This is where call transfer is invaluable. It saves your customer time, and you don’t lose the customer by asking them to call back on another line. Both companies offer this free as part of their standard packages. Vonage and RingCentral are neck-and-neck on call transfer. No additional cost.
Do Not Disturb. Not a good time to pick up? Are you on vacation? Want to screen calls? The DND function allows you to redirect calls directly to voicemail or the switchboard. You can even set rules for how internal and external calls are handled. Both Vonage and RingCentral offer this userful service at no extra charge in their packages. One point each on this criteria. No additional cost.
Call Queue. Flooded by calls? Worried too many callers hear the busy tone? You can set up a queue system to distribute incoming calls, meaning all your customers get answered. You can even choose which calls are prioritized. RingCentral offers call queueing as part of its package. With Vonage, you'll be paying $14.99 a month. One point each here for both companies. Additional cost $0-$14.99.
Incoming Fax to Email. Faxing may feel like part of the business culture from the previous century, but it's still very important for many businesses. Instead of getting your faxes on a traditional fax machine, both Vonage and RingCentral offer a service which converts inbound faxes into emails. It's $14.99 on Vonage and $7.99 on RingCentral. Both providers score with fax. Additional cost $7.99-$14.99.
FollowMe. An unbelievably useful service for individual staff members. If someone calls your VoIP phone number, your cell phone, office phone and home phone ring until you answer. If you don't, it goes to voicemail. Alternatively, your cell phone rings. No answer? Your office phone rings. No answer? Your home phone rings. No answer? Straight to voicemail. FollowMe can be programmed to match a co-worker's scheduled activities and locations. This is available on both Vonage and RingCentral. No additional cost.
The Results: 8/8 for both Vonage and RingCentral for our criteria. However, if you take all these services, RingCentral is at least $31.98 a month cheaper.
How do Vonage and RingCentral services’ connect with other office tools? Making VoIP calls on the move is important. Therefore, having Apple and Android apps is crucial. You will find both options with RingCentral and Vonage.
Vonage also offers integration into Bullhorn, Clio, Connectwise, Google Apps, Microsoft Dynamics, Office 365 and Salesforce. This is available across all packages, as is its proprietary desktop app.
RingCentral integrates with Microsoft products, Google, Box and Dropbox on all packages. However, you have to pay for a higher package for Salesforce, Zendesk and Desk.com functionality.
Knowing that your VoIP business provider has your back is important. Both companies’ customer service teams are based in the US.
Vonage prides itself on its customer service. Customers can get in touch by phone, email or a ticketing system. Staff are trained in all areas of the customer experience, from initial setup, to helping when things go wrong. Vonage offers significant out-of-hours support as well.
RingCentral's customer service is also very impressive. If you're just using one handset, customer support is available from 5am to 6pm Pacific Time only. For customers with more than one handset, live phone support is available 24/7. There's an online learning center to help with all aspects of using RingCentral, from set-up to using different features. You can also sign up for a personalized demonstration of a product with a specialist.
There's not much to differentiate between the business VoIP systems where customer service is concerned, they both do a great job.
Pricing and Packages
$29.99 - $39.99/user per month
$24.99 - $44.99/user per month
RingCentral offer a tiered structure, each packed with extra features. The $24.99/month package offers 1,000 toll-free minutes a month. The Enterprise package comes in at $44.99 with 10,000 minutes.
Vonage wins this round. It offers solid discounts and the free handsets, together with unlimited toll-free minutes, making the advantage it offers hard to ignore.
Overall Winner: Vonage
Vonage and RingCentral are both technology-driven, customer-focused companies. For us, Vonage wins by a close margin, particularly if your company needs more than 10 and up to 250 lines. Unlimited toll-free calls, more features, free handsets and enhanced integration push it out in front.
For very small businesses, RingCentral gets the nod due to its low cost-of-entry and the fact that its features are superb for one- or two-person businesses.
See our extensive review section for more about Vonage, RingCentral and all of the other leading business VoIP providers.