The Use of SIP Trunks and SIP Lines in Business Communications

In business, choosing a telecommunication solution can be an overwhelming experience. The variety of services on the market and the different jargon used to describe the products can make the process quite confusing.

A term you may encounter often is "SIP trunking." Here's what it means and what you need to know about it:

What's the Difference Between a SIP Trunk and SIP Line?

Session initiation protocol, or more commonly referred to as SIP, is a virtual connection that allows business phone systems to operate via an Internet connection rather than a physical phone line. It's the standard communications protocol in a unified communication solution for voice and video calls across a data network.

You can think of a SIP trunk as a virtual version of a traditional analog phone line. It holds multiple SIP lines, each of which is able to transmit calls via VoIP, enabling callers to use the Internet to make voice calls by sending voice data in packets.

The number of SIP lines that a SIP trunk holds varies and depends largely on a customer's needs. Higher call volume means more concurrent calls and requires more SIP lines to provide the necessary bandwidth.

The Benefits of SIP Trunking

SIP trunking enables the transmission of VoIP calls, which is superior over traditional phone lines for a variety of reasons:

  • Quick setup and low maintenance: A SIP trunk is "installed" virtually over a business's existing Internet connection and does not require the use of traditional analog phone lines. Moreover, SIP trunking eliminates the need for physical connections to a phone company, so there is no hardware, wiring or circuit box to install and maintain.
  • Scalability: Businesses using VoIP only have to pay for the number of SIP lines they use, rather than being locked into excessive capabilities they may not need. They can also scale up quickly by purchasing more lines or modifying the services without having to wait for the installation of hardware or infrastructure.
  • Reliability: VoIP using SIP trunking provides a level of redundancy that increases the reliability of services. The use of redundant data lines allows providers to minimize costly downtime by re-routing services or forwarding calls to mobile phones in the event of an interruption.
  • Flexibility: SIP trunking makes it possible for VoIP services to leverage shared lines, such as those used for Internet connections, to increase flexibility in the use of communication resources. Additionally, traditional phone systems that are not VoIP-enabled can be connected via common VoIP gateways to SIP lines and benefit from the cost-savings.
  • Communication capabilities: SIP trunking allows the use of VoIP and UCaaS (Unified Communications as a Service) that offers businesses the capabilities to use voice and video calls, as well as chat and file sharing, to enhance real-time communication and collaboration among employees.
  • Cost-efficiency: By replacing multiple phone lines with a single point of entry, SIP trunking can reduce charges for incoming lines, as well as the IT costs associated with maintenance of these phone lines without compromising call quality. Also, the costs for local, long distance and international calls are much lower than traditional phone services, while all in-network calls are free.

Factors to Consider When Buying a SIP Trunk

When purchasing a SIP trunk for your business, consider the following factors:

  • Technical support: Around-the-clock support to ensure uninterrupted service
  • Security: The use of encryption, anti-virus software and firewalls to protect your data
  • Equipment quality: The use of high-quality equipment to minimize breakdowns that can lead to costly downtime
  • Network design: Fast, reliable and secure networks designed to meet the specific needs of your business
  • Sufficient bandwidth: The ability to support a company's growth by building in the capacity to accommodate the number of employees and devices as projected by the business plan
  • Backup and redundancy: A well-designed backup plan and redundant connections to prevent costly downtime or loss of data in the event a network goes down for any reason
  • Service plans: Pricing and capabilities to meet the requirements and budget of your business

Support the Growth of Your Business

SIP trunking supports the use of VoIP and UCaaS to enhance a business's communication capabilities. However, in order to get the most out of the communication solution, be sure to use a provider that offers versatile, scalable and secure services and solutions to support the growth of your business.

Choosing the right technology is crucial to a growing business. Take the uncertainty out of the equation by choosing a SIP technology provider that can scale to meet your business' needs, whatever they may be at any given time. Call 1-866-879-8647 or fill out an online form to request a no-obligation quote from an 8x8 product specialist.

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