The Top 4 Small Business Phone Systems in Canada

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By Aimee Bradshaw | Writer and researcher | Updated: 19 October 2021

We’ve reviewed phone system providers in Canada to find the best choice for small businesses like yours


The best phone systems for small businesses in Canada are net2phone Canada, Grasshopper, Ooma, and 8×8. During our extensive research, these systems impressed us most with their innovative features, affordable price plans, and easy setup and installation processes.

But exactly which of these top-rated phone systems is right for your small business? Informed by over a decade's experience in comparing and recommending business phone systems, the reviews on this page highlight what each system is best at, and who they're suitable for – so you can find out which is best for your team.

You can also try our free quote-finding tool to receive tailored, no-obligation quotes from the right phone system suppliers for your small business.


The Best Small Business Telephone Systems

The best small business phone systems are: net2phone Canada, Grasshopper, Ooma and 8×8.

1
net2phone Canada (Cloud-based)Best customer service$29.99 – $49.99/user/month
2
Grasshopper (On premise/cloud-based)Best for remote workers$26 – $80/month
3
Ooma (On-premise)Best for very small offices$19.95 – $24.95/user/month
4
8×8 (Cloud-based)Best for small-medium sized businesses$19 – $186/user/month

Pricing correct as of 19/10/2021


1. net2phone Canada (formerly Versature)

Best Customer Service

Ottawa-based net2phone Canada prides itself on its customer-centric, uncomplicated approach to business phone solutions – the company says the phrase “it just works!” is the most common feedback it gets from users. Alongside modern dashboards and cutting-edge technology, net2phone Canada offers friendly, easily-reachable customer service, with a dedicated ‘customer success' team that helps you get the very best out of your system. For small business teams that are a little inexperienced when it comes to VoIP, this level of dedicated support can prove invaluable.

How Much Does net2phone Canada Cost?

net2phone Canada offers three price plans for businesses with more than six system users:

Business Lite$29.99 per user, per month
Business Select$39.99 per user, per month
Business Premier$49.99 per user, per month

However, if your small business has five or fewer team members who'd want to use the system, net2phone Canada offers a Starter Kit plan for £134.99 per month all in.

Pricing correct as of 19/10/2021

Pros:

  • One of the best-rated phone providers around
  • Unlimited calling to 40+ countries in Asia, Central America, Europe, and South America on all plans
  • A Canada-based small business – who better to understand the needs of your Canada-based small business!

X Cons:

  • Not the most cost-effective option for businesses making lots of long-distance calls

2. Grasshopper

Best for Remote Workers

Grasshopper is an innovative technology that turns personal smartphones and computers into business lines and virtual phone systems, enabling your employees to benefit from the credibility of a business number and call features, but while working from home or on the move. Tailored for small businesses, this system is designed so your team can benefit from a proper business phone system, without having to buy specialist hardware. We see Grasshopper as an excellent choice for small business teams that want to save a bit of money and embrace remote working – which, following the COVID-19 pandemic, is a very sensible idea.

How Much Does Grasshopper Cost?

Grasshopper offers three price plans:

Solo1 phone number, 3 extensions$26 per month
Partner3 phone numbers, 6 extensions$44 per month
Small Business5 phone numbers, unlimited extensions$80 per month

Pricing correct as of 19/10/2021

Pros:

  • No need for equipment – Grasshopper works from your mobile or desktop
  • Automated greeting and call direction maintain professionalism
  • Easy to set up – just choose your number, download the app, and go

X Cons:

  • Grasshopper's reduced functionality is fine if you don’t accept/make many calls, but you might outgrow it quickly
  • Pricing information is not transparent – you'll have to get in touch for the details


3. Ooma

Best for Very Small Offices

We recommend Ooma to small offices because it's easy to pay for, and even easier to set up. For starters, Ooma doesn't do contracts – instead, it'll charge you each month for as long as you use it, but won't commit you to using it for a set number of years. Running a small business can be unpredictable, after all, and that flexibility can give you real peace of mind as you grow your company. Second, Ooma's ‘plug and play' phone system works right out of the box, with the company claiming that it only takes 15 minutes to set up – perfect for small teams that don't yet have dedicated tech expertise. Besides all this ease, Ooma's system comes with 35 features, from virtual receptionists to ring groups, so it's likely to provide everything you need to boost your small business's professional image.

How Much Does Ooma Cost?

Ooma offers two price plans (prices are in USD):

Ooma Office$19.95 per user, per month
Ooma Office Pro$24.95 per user, per month

Pricing correct as of 19/10/2021

Pros:

  • One of the most affordable suppliers we've come across
  • Ooma Office Pro comes with Ooma Meetings, for integrated video conferencing
  • Can provide an unlimited number of lines
  • A free 30-day trial is available

X Cons:

  • There are some additional costs, potentially including around $13 per month for your phone number

4. 8×8

Best for Small to Medium Sized Businesses

8×8's X Series is an all-in-one cloud-based solution that rolls phone calls, video meetings, collaboration tools, and call centre features into one system. The system starts at a very small-business-friendly $19 per user, per month, but it does get a little more expensive than the others on this list (or a lot more, if you go for the higher-tiered packages) as you plump for more advanced features. That extra investment does pay off, though, and 8×8 is a great option for growing businesses that want a variety of productivity-enabling communications features. Plus, 8×8 makes it easy to upgrade from one plan to the next, so it can grow alongside your operation – which is perfect for small businesses with big ambitions.

How Much Does 8×8 Cost?

8×8 offers six main price plans for Canadian businesses. As a small business, you'll most likely be choosing between X1, X2, and X4. Meanwhile, X6, X7, and X8 add features for contact centres.

X1$19 per user, per month
X2$30 per user, per month
X4$55 per user, per month
X6$133 per user, per month
X7$143 per user, per month
X8$186 per user, per month

Pricing correct as of 19/10/2021

Pros:

  • Good deals for businesses that make long-distance calls
  • Easy to upgrade as you need
  • Great onboarding process – you and your team don’t need to know anything about VoIP to get started

X Cons:

  • Some reviews complain of patchy customer support

Expert Verdict

Each of the phone systems featured on this page are excellent options for small businesses that are looking to supercharge communication and collaboration, without breaking the bank or facing hours of unwieldy setup.

We believe net2phone Canada and Ooma are excellent all-rounders for remote and office working, while Grasshopper could be just what you need if your workforce is remote more often than not. Meanwhile, quickly scaling small businesses that will need advanced features and call centre capability soon could benefit more from 8×8‘s plans.

Need a phone system for your small business? get quotes

FAQs

How will a good telephone system help my small business?

1. Integrate with your CRM software

Combining a tech savvy telephone network with a CRM – Customer Relationship Management system can have big benefits for small companies.
A good CRM will ensure incoming and outgoing sales leads are managed and followed up, and excellent customer service thrives. Combining with a phone system makes dialling, logging calls and responding to orders, amongst other factors including the management of the sales process, much easier.

2. Ensure every call is answered quickly and well

Efficient customer service is where small businesses can get the upper hand. A good telephony system will allow management of extension numbers to quickly direct calls to the right person or department. It will enable calls to be diverted to mobile and either picked up or managed with caller display and voicemail.

This is absolutely essential for a smaller business where some or all employees could be out of the office, in meetings, or making sales in the field when the phone is still ringing at base. If nobody’s available to pick up the call, your telephone should direct the call to the appropriate queue.

3. Save you time and space

With today’s technology there is no longer the need for large and costly cabinets of equipment. A desktop phone is compact and low cost, and much of the software and connectivity can be managed in the cloud. Training and support can be in the form of tutorials, email and chat support, negating the costs of site visits and lengthy set up calls.


What types of small business phone systems are there?

Here’s a quick overview of the three different types of phone system you can choose for your small business:

KSU

A KSU or Key System Unit is popular for small businesses as it’s a basic system with a limit to how many phones can be connected. It has the basic features a small business requires and will have a base unit. Wireless KSU systems are also available.

PBX

PBX or Private Branch Exchange systems are more advanced than KSU’s and automatically route calls. They have an uninterruptible power supply which can be of benefit where downtime due to power outages would have serious consequences. They work well for services and facilities companies for this reason. PBX systems are available as hosted systems or with a physical base unit.

VoIP

VoIP or IP technology is the most advanced, transmitting calls over an IP network rather than the traditional PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) that KSU and PBX systems use. VoIP units can be software based phones and are more flexible, integrated and controllable. VoIP phone units are more advanced can display and transmit data digitally.


How much does a small business phone system cost?

You can expect your small business phone system to cost between around $25/month per user, to upwards of $50/month per user depending on your plan. You’ll then also need to factor in any additional set-up costs, and the cost ($0 to $200) and of the telephones themselves ($50 – $200+ each).

Here’s a complete list of possible costs to consider:

  • Base system
  • Phone units
  • Installation
  • Training and support
  • Network and call charges
  • Monthly maintenance and contracts
Aimee profile image
Aimee Bradshaw Writer and researcher

Aimee is Expert Market’s resident telephone systems and point of sale go-to. If she’s not writing about business products, you’ll find her daydreaming about dog walking on Dorset beaches.

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