Online faxing allows you to have all the advantages of a traditional fax machine, with enhancements designed for the digital age. You’ll never have to worry about losing track of paper printouts or tracking down your sent faxes once you switch to an online fax service.
Different brands offer various levels of service and options, so an understanding of the features that should be included in your plan can help you make the best possible decisions for your brand.
What features are most important to you – and which ones don’t matter quite so much? A look at how online faxing works and what to expect can help you choose the best service for your organization.
How Online Faxing Works
When you send a fax via an online service, the entire process is digitized. A special email address or mobile application is used to direct the digitized version of your fax to the recipient.
You’ll create your fax in one of several ways; you can create a document using your word processing program or you can scan an existing document and then upload it.
Once your document is complete, it is converted by your provider will convert it so that it can be read by a typical fax machine – and sends it over traditional phone lines to deliver it to your recipient. You can also receive faxes; you’ll receive a dedicated fax number that people can send to you using a traditional fax machine.
Your service will convert the fax into digital documents and deliver them to you via email. For incoming faxes, the person sending to you can just use their fax machine as usual; you’ll get a digital document via email.
For outgoing faxes, your documents will print out on the receiver’s fax just as if you sent it via a conventional fax machine.
Using an online fax service allows you to cut costs – you have no paper, ink or maintenance to worry about. It also eliminates a piece of equipment from your office and uses less electricity than a conventional fax.
Features you Can’t Miss Out On
While most services operate in the same way, there are some features that are designed to make your experience ideal and to enhance the usability and security of the process. Consider the following items when you review a service:
Can you send and receive faxes on the go, or do you need to use a desktop? A mobile application can help you see documents right from your phone or tablet and allow you to send and receive on the go. Full integration with programs like Outlook can also enhance convenience and make it easier to send and receive faxes no matter where you are.
Can you receive a report of who the fax came from, the time it came in and even when it was first viewed? The ability to access details like this could be important, depending on your field and requirements.
If you can schedule a fax in advance, you don’t have to sit at your desk waiting for the right moment – you can also schedule your fax to go to several recipients at the same time.
Apply your own branding to your cover sheets and materials to create a cohesive look for your organization. A fax service that includes customization can enhance your brand and marketing program without added cost.
Any faxed document has the potential to fall into the hands of someone you did not intend. Enhanced security that included encryption, passwords and more can help safeguard your proprietary information and important business details.
Does the service offer a toll-free number? It may seem minor, but a toll-free number can enhance the visibility and buyer perception of your brand.
How many faxes do you need to send each month? A system that can handle both your sent and received volume and that offers the right kind of plan for your needs should be your first choice.
Make sure there is a team available to help you get started, to make the system work and to ensure you are getting the most from the customer experience. When you choose a provider, the amount of service and the times they are available may be a crucial factor as well. Taking the time to learn more about the features offered by a faxing service, and determining which options are so important you can’t afford to miss them will help you choose the right brand and plan for your needs.
Choosing the right system from the start can ensure you get the most from the process and that you are delighted with your results.