The 10 Best Small Business Phone Systems in 2024

Business phone systems

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By using a small business phone system, you can get your staff to work and collaborate more efficiently. Stanford University reports that 41% of US workers are currently working remotely in some capacity, and a small biz phone system will allow you to implement a strong remote working process.

Our meticulous research tested the best small businesses telephone systems and found that 8×8 X2 is the top system that you can currently get your hands on. However, in a market ripe with choice, choosing a telephone system that fits your small business like a glove can be a tough choice to make.

To help you navigate through all the options, in this article, we review the 10 best small business telephone systems, comparing them against the factors that matter most to small businesses so you can be confident that you are investing in the best solution for you. For even more personalized help, try our free quote-finding tool to get tailored quotes from trusted providers.

What Are The Top 10 Best Small Business Phone Systems?

These are the providers we recommend based on our research. Use our cost comparison tool to find the best value service for your business

  1. 8×8 X2 – Best overall
  2. Zoom Phone Unlimited – Best for features
  3. Nextiva Essential – Best for flexible set up
  4. RingCentral Ultra – Best for external connections
  5. Dialpad – Best for conversational AI
  6. net2phone Office Pro – Best for international calling
  7. Nuacom Unlimited – Best for customer satisfaction
  8. Ooma Office Pro – Best for value
  9. Google Voice Standard – Best for security
  10. Vonage Premium – Best for team collaboration

What Is A Small Business Phone System?

A small business phone system is a communication solution that gives companies more functionalities in their call system. Normally, these include the ability to queue, transfer, record, and transcribe calls. It can also allow ring groups to be created and automated menus to be set.

The main types of telephone systems for small business are Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and private branch exchange (PBX):

  • VoIP phone system: this solution allows your company to make calls through the internet. It normally works through cloud-based apps that you can install on your computer or smartphone, and because of that, requires little initial investment. It tends to be favored by small business due to its economical price tag.
  • PBX phone system: this solution is generally based on your company's office, connecting all your hardware (such as phones and modems) through a set of telephone lines. It requires equipment to be bought and installed, which makes it a more expensive option.

The Top 10 Best Small Business Phone Systems

Swipe right to see more
0 out of 0

Zoom Phone Unlimited

Nextiva Essential

Net2Phone Business Lite

Nuacom Unlimited

Vonage Premium

Price (per user, per month)

Custom

Price (per user, per month)

$15

Price (per user, per month)

$17.95

Price (per user, per month)

$34.99

Price (per user, per month)

$25

Price (per user, per month)

$29.99

Price (per user, per month)

$24.99

Price (per user, per month)

$29.95

Price (per user, per month)

$20

Price (per user, per month)

$29.99

Domestic Calls

Unlimited

Domestic Calls

Unlimited inclusive inbound and outbound minutes

Domestic Calls

Unlimited

Domestic Calls

1000 inclusive inbound minutes 2000 outbound minutes per user

Domestic Calls

Unlimited

Domestic Calls

Unlimited

Domestic Calls

Unlimited

Domestic Calls

Unlimited

Domestic Calls

Unlimited

Domestic Calls

Unlimited to domestic landlines

International Calls

Unlimited to 14 countries

International Calls

N/A

International Calls

N/A

International Calls

N/A

International Calls

N/A

International Calls

Free international calling to 40+ countries

International Calls

N/A

International Calls

N/A

International Calls

Free calls to the US from any country

International Calls

N/A

Key Features
  • Onboarding support
  • Call queue
  • Ring groups
  • Analytics
  • Customizable call routing
  • Call recording
Key Features
  • Impressive offer of inbound communication features
  • Competitive price point
  • Lots of management features
Key Features
  • Workspace and email integrations
  • Onboarding support
  • Customisable call routing
  • Call-flow designer
  • Setting up teams
Key Features
  • Onboarding support
  • 90+ platforms to integrate with
  • Call queue
  • Ring groups
  • Web conferencing
  • Internal live chat
Key Features
  • Onboarding support
  • Call queue
  • Ring groups
  • Call recording
  • Analytics
  • Call transcripts
Key Features
  • API
  • Onboarding support
  • Customizable call routing
  • Setting up teams
  • Analytics
Key Features
  • 15 minutes onboarding support session
  • CRM, Helpdesk, Internal live chat, and email integration
  • Call queue
  • Ring groups
Key Features
  • Email and Workspace integrations
  • Call recording
  • Customizable call routing
  • Analytics
  •  

Key Features
  • Analytics
  • Customisable call routing
  • Multi-factor authentication
  • User permissions
  • Password rules
Key Features
  • Onboarding support
  • Call queue
  • Ring groups
  • Call recording
  • Call monitoring
  • Analytics
  • Web conferencing*
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Free Trial
Get personalized phone system prices from the best providers for you
Did You Know?

According to the Stanford University, 13% of US full-time employees are fully remote and 28% are in a hybrid arrangement.

1. 8×8 X2 – Best Overall Small Business Phone System

8x8 logo
8x8 X2
4.7
Pricing Custom
Quick overview

Chosen by over 2.5 million users, 8x8 has a proven track record of success. According to Forrester Consulting, clients that opted for 8x8 reported a 158% growth in ROI! Known for its customizable, drag-and-drop dashboards and intelligent coaching and collaboration tools, 8x8 offers a wide menu of subscription options that will allow you to gradually – or rapidly – scale up your small business.

With features like ring groups and call queue offered at its X2 subscription plan, it will be easy for your small business to deal with large volumes of callers. What’s more, with web conferencing and internal live chat integrations, with a wide range of platforms including Telegram and Slack, your team will be able to work remotely, giving you more flexibility at reduced costs.

Strengths

Boasts some of the most generous customer support in the VoIP-verse

Unlimited inbound and outbound minutes to 48 countries

Offers real-time dashboards and wide range of seamless integrations

Weaknesses

Provider's best features not available for X2 subscribers

Unclear if Customer Success Managers (onboarding support) come at an extra cost

Pricing
Custom
Based on your businesss' size and requirements

What Makes 8×8 X2 A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: starting at the X2 subscription, it is integrable with CRM, Helpdesk, Web Conferencing, external and internal live chats, email, and more. This makes 8×8 a powerful tool that your team can leverage to create a quick and personalized customer experience.
  • Onboarding support: provided through 8×8’s Customer Success Managers, although it’s unclear whether this comes at an additional cost.
  • Scalability: you and your team can work remotely because 8×8 X2 allows you to sync your internal communications because it’s compatible with platforms like Slack, Telegram, and Teams.. It’s also equipped with call queue, ring groups, analytics, customizable call routing, and call recording, all of which allows you to handle large numbers of callers and gather data to optimize your small business.

How Does 8×8 X2 Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Awarded a 4.6/5 by our independent researchers – who’ve put 8×8 X2’s features, pricing, and customer support to the test – it ticks off all the boxes on your small business phone system checklist, whether your small business needs a comprehensive, savvy system or you just want the essentials. We believe it stands out due to its flexibility of choice.

We’ve given 8×8 a stellar 5/5 for its pricing, a score that is equalized by other providers like Nextiva, net2phone, Nuacom, Ooma, and Google Voice. This means that the bucks you’re putting down are a worthy investment, thanks to 8×8’s broad range of features. We have also awarded 8×8 a stellar 5/5 for its generous customer support and security, which is unrivaled by all other providers featured here.

What's New For 8x8?

As of September 2023, 8×8 stopped advertising its plan prices and rolled out custom pricing, which means now you need to contact its sales team to know how much your company would pay to use it. When we last tested 8×8 X2 in June 2023, it cost $24 per user per month. It also stopped offering free trials.

2. Zoom Phone Unlimited – Best Small Business Phone System For Features

Zoom logo
Zoom Phone Unlimited
4.5
Pricing $10 - 20
Quick overview

Scoring an excellent 4.2/5 score for features in our research, the reason we like Zoom Phone Unlimited is because you get access to all sorts of inbound communication, conversation, and nearly all management features you might possibly need. This makes it an impressively functional tool for any small business that is looking to adopt a new unified communications system. It also scores a perfect 5/5 for price because for as little as $10 per user, per month, you can access a wealth of VoIP features you need to enhance your communication capabilities.

The bad news is that Zoom Phone Unlimited performs very poorly on the security front. Scoring a measly 2/5 for security in our research, you’re only promised compliance certifications and TLS encryption. It’s therefore not the best system to choose if you want to protect your unified communications system from prying eyes. If top-notch security is an absolute must for your small business, we’d recommend looking at 8x8 X2 instead.

Strengths

Impressive offer of inbound communications features

Lots of management features on offer, making it a scalable solution

Competitive price point

Weaknesses

Poor range of security features

Email, phoneline, and live chat support all come at an additional cost

Pricing
PlanPrice (per user, per month)
Metered $10
Unlimited $15
Global Select $20

What Makes Zoom Phone Unlimited A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: Zoom Unlimited has a solid range of software integrations on offer, including CRM, Helpdesk, Web Conferencing, Internal Live Chat, API, Email, Workspace, and SSO integrations. You only miss out on analytics and external live chat integrations.
  • Onboarding support: not offered
  • Scalability: unlimited number of users, call queue, ring groups, wide range of management features are all offer which makes a solid scalable solution (4.3/5 for scalability in our research)

How Does Zoom Phone Unlimited Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

When it comes to range of features, Zoom Phone Unlimited is practically unrivaled. It scores a 4.2/5 for features in our research, which is the highest score we awarded and is only equalized by Dialpad Pro. This means that if you’re looking for an affordable and highly functional system, then Zoom Phone Unlimited is a great choice for your small business.

Zoom Phone Unlimited is also in the major leagues when it comes to price, scoring a perfect 5/5 in this category in our research. However, this isn’t necessarily a unique selling point for Zoom Phone Unlimited given that 8×8 X2, Nextiva Essential, net2phone Office Pro, Nuacom Unlimited, Ooma Office Pro, and Google Voice Standard were all awarded the same score. Therefore, if you want an affordable system but aren’t convinced by this particular provider, you have plenty of alternatives.

Where Zoom Phone falls significantly behind is for security features. Scoring a poor 2/5 in this category in our research, you’re better off looking at 8×8 X2 if you want to keep your unified communications safe.

What's New For Zoom Phone?

Since we last tested Zoom Phone, it enhanced its spam detection on June 18, 2023, allowing admins to set spam thresholds for call marking, in addition to the automated spam identification that's standard in the service

3. Nextiva Essential – Best Small Business Phone System For Flexible Set Up

nextiva
Nextiva Essential
3.9
Pricing $23.95
Quick overview

Boasting its own first-party hardware and compatibility with third-party desktop phones from Cisco, Yealink, and Polycom, Nextiva is pretty flexible when it comes to set up. This is particularly handy if you prefer to have a desktop phone as part of your VoIP system. Although Ooma also offers first-party desktop phones, Nextiva drives ahead in this category because it has a wider range of third-party desktop compatible phones.

With a 99.999% uptime guarantee, 24/7 Live Support, live chat, and onboarding support, we like Nextiva Essential because of its expansive customer support – our researchers also gave it an excellent 4.5/5. So you can be confident in knowing that if you have difficulties when using your VoIP system, Nextiva’s customer service will be there to offer a helping hand.

Strengths

Competitive price point

Fantastic customer support

Weaknesses

Very limited offering of external connections

Not many management features on offer, which doesn’t help scalability

Missing multi-factor authentication and password rules, limiting its security

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Essential $18.95
Professional $22.95
Enterprise $32.95

What Makes Nextiva Essential A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: Nextiva Essentials has a really limited offering of software you can sync your VoIP system with. Only offering Outlook email integration and Google Workspace Integrations, you really miss out on a bunch of key software, including CRM, Helpdesk, and Web Conferencing.
  • Onboarding support: this is offered to Nextiva Essential subscribers.
  • Scalability: Nextiva Essential is not the most scalable solution because of its limited range of management features. If you choose to go for Nextiva, you’ll only have access to customisable routing, call-flow designer, and setting up teams. You could, potentially, also access call monitoring and analytics, but both of these need add-ons that are going to cost you a little extra. The good news is that Nextiva Essential does offer ring groups and team messaging, both of which help with managing large volumes of callers, and working remotely with your team.

How Does Nextiva Essential Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Compared to some of the best business VoIP phone systems, Nextiva Essential comfortably sits at a 4.5/5 for customer support, placing it above others like Dialpad Pro, Vonage Premium and net2phone. We also think Nextiva is great for what it offers at its price, explaining our 5/5 in this category. This places it on equal standing as 8×8, net2phone, Nuacom, and Ooma Office Pro. However, if you’re gonna go for Nextiva, keep in mind that it’s not fantastic for scalability – scoring a low 2.8/5 in our research. It has a limited offering of management features which might mean you could outgrow the system as your small business grows.

What's New For Nextiva?

Since August 2023, the provider bettered its meeting features. Users can now auto-accept meeting guests and create both future and instant meetings.

4. RingCentral Ultra – Best Small Business Phone System for External Connections

RingCentral logo
RingCentral Ultra
3.9
Pricing $35
Quick overview

If you’re a business that values compatibility with your software anatomy above all else, RingCentral is a great option thanks to all the external connections it can link to. Trusted by industry giants like Waitrose & Partners, Costa Express, and Mobica, RingCentral has carved itself a reputable spot as a leading VoIP provider. With nearly 20 years in the cloud telephone services sector, RingCentral is a robust option for your small business thanks to its rich menu of management features, integrability, and onboarding support.

With personalized, data-backed routing, you’ll be able to deepen relationships with your customers. What’s more, with RingCentral’s reports and intuitive dashboards, you’ll gain valuable insights that will guide business-critical decisions.

Strengths

Tightly integrated IVR and automatic call distribution (ACD), allowing you to leverage customer data

Rich menu of management features

Weaknesses

Pricier than other providers

Needs RingCentral Engage to use power and auto dialer, predictive dialing, and custom call lists

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Core $20
Advanced $25
Ultra $35

What Makes RingCentral Ultra A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: You can sync your phone system with over 90 CRM platforms. This includes key Helpdesk integrations like Salesforce and Zendesk, analytics, and other platforms like Slack, WhatsApp, and Facebook. This makes the customer service arm of your business stronger, and it allows you to instantly draw on customer-specific data to provide a frustration-free experience.
  • Onboarding support: this is available to RingCentral Ultra subscribers.
  • Scalability: RingCentral Ultra has an impressive offer for scalability, equipping you with all the right tools – call queue, ring groups, web conferencing tools, internal live chat, and pretty much all the management features you could ever need as a small business! It also includes multi-factor authentication, password rules, compliance certifications and encryption, which will help shield your operation as you continue to scale up.

How Does RingCentral Ultra Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Factoring in price, integrability, features, and customer support, our in-depth research has awarded RingCentral a great 3.9/5 for its value as a system for small businesses. With access to key features like call queue and ring groups, you can easily take on a large number of callers. Because of this, we’ve awarded RingCentral a 4.1/5 for features – the second highest score in this category among the providers we’ve looked at!

What’s even more impressive is that, compared to competitors like Vonage and Dialpad, RingCentral is miles ahead in terms of customer service features. In our research, it scores a stellar 5/5 in this category. So, you can be confident you’ll have a whole dashboard of nifty features to power your small business.

What's New For RingCentral?

In August 2023, RingCentral started allowing admins to turn auto-answer on and off in account-level, and create multiple call queues by downloading and then uploading a template file. Also, since we last tested, it stopped offering its then-more expensive plan (Ultimate) and changed the names of the remaining plans (Essentials, Standard, and Premium).

5. Dialpad Pro – Best Small Business Phone System For Conversational AI

Dialpad Pro
3.7
Pricing $25
Quick overview

With one foot in the present and another in the future, Dialpad is known for its innovative use of conversational AI. Known as Dialpad AI, this function accurately transcribes your phone calls in real time, flags whether or not the conversation features happy or frustrated customers, automates post-call summaries, and enables you to create notes with tips and advice that appears on screen when certain keywords or phrases are spoken on call. You can also choose to turn off this feature for more confidential conversations.

Strengths

Great customer support, including a user forum, knowledge base, and live chat

Fantastic customer reputation, with an aggregated review score of 4.4/5

Offers the best range of features, right after 8x8

Weaknesses

Not very easy to scale, scoring 3.3/5 in our scalability analysis

Doesn’t have an uptime guarantee at the Pro subscription level

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Standard $15
Pro $25
Enterprise Custom

What Makes Dialpad Pro A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: Dialpad Pro is syncable with CRM, helpdesk, web conferencing, email, workspace, internal live chat and SSO, giving you access to platforms like Salesforce, Zendesk, Hubspot, G Suite, and Slack. However, it does miss out on its own API, and external live chat and analytics integrations.. Overall, it does have a pretty limited offer of syncable platforms, particularly on the CRM front, as your menu only includes three possible CRM platforms.
  • Onboarding support: available to Dialpad Pro subscribers.
  • Scalability: with access to call queue, ring groups, and a variety of management features like call recording, analytics, and call transcripts, Dialpad Pro offers a good range of tools you can rely on to build up your business. If you choose to keep your operation remote, you can also use internal live chat and web conferencing features to slash costs. However, its security measures do miss out on multi-factor authentication and password rules, making it less secure than other providers like Google Voice and 8×8.

How Does Dialpad Pro Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Our thorough research at how suitable Dialpad Pro is for small businesses, and it achieves a 3.7/5. This is mostly because it’s pricier than other options, and because it could have a more lush offering of external connections. Despite this, we do know that Dialpad Pro is nifty and futuristic thanks to its conversational AI, which allows you to do a lot of things hands free and focus your attention on other tasks.. Despite its faults, we awarded it a great 4/5 for its customer support, ranking above other providers like Nuacom.

What's New For DialPad?

Since we last tested it, Dialpad introduced an on-demand functionality for its AI Recap feature in August 2023. It's an extension of a feature first rolled in April 2023, which allowed users to receive a four-sentence synopsis of every conversation, including call details, speakers, and general discussion topics. It also updated users' inbox settings, grouping messages by contacts rather presenting a running list of them all, similarly to Gmail's main layout.

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6. net2phone Office Pro – Best Small Business Phone System For International Calling

Net2Phone logo
net2phone Office Pro
3.6
Pricing $22.99
Quick overview

All the systems we discuss here provide unlimited US calls at no extra cost – but what about calls to other countries? Most systems charge extra fees for them, but Net2Phone stands out because it comes with unlimited calling to more than 40 countries. This means speaking to clients and teams across the world is completely free, allowing you to maintain and expand your international reach.

Net2Phone can also give you virtual phone numbers and dial tones in over 50 countries and 300 cities. So, if you’d like to establish a presence in places like Europe or Asia, your contact options are easily taken care of. We’re also quite impressed by Net2Phone’s international presence as its offices and data centers around the globe hosts more than 33 billion international minutes every year – so we’d say it’s a pretty safe bet if you’ve got plans to expand internationally in the coming years!

Strengths

Net2Phone will supply you with free upgraded desk phones when you switch to the system

The company provides free, 24/7, US-based customer support via phone or email

The system is very user friendly, and includes a simple management console that makes it easy to make changes to your system

Weaknesses

Doesn’t come with audio conferencing or team messaging

Very limited software integrations compared to competitors

Doesn’t offer call flip, barge, or whisper and is limited in management features

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Office $18.99
Office Pro $22.99
Office Power $29.99

What Makes net2phone Office Pro A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: overall, net2phone Office Pro has slim pickings when it comes to software integrations. Subscribers only get access to an API, and if you want to integrate it with Zoho or SF to sync your CRM and Helpdesk systems, you need to purchase it at an extra cost of $2 per user per month. All other key integrations, like email and workspace, are not offered, which severely handicaps the quality of your unified business communications.
  • Onboarding support: this is offered to net2phone Office Pro subscribers.
  • Scalability: our researchers gave net2phone a 3.⅕ for scalability, mostly because it’s missing a bunch of important management features – you only really have access to customizable call routing, setting up teams, and analytics. Even though you have access to ring groups, you miss out on call queue, which can complicate managing a large number of incoming calls. The silver lining, however, is that you do have access to team messaging and video conferencing, which helps with remote working.

How Does net2phone Office Pro Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Scoring a stellar 5/5 in our research, one of the reasons we love net2phone Office Pro is because of its competitive price. However, there are other providers who are just as competitive because they all occupy the same top spot, including 8×8, Nextiva, Nuacom, Ooma, and Google Voice. So, while not unique, it’s still a really safe bet if you want something that won’t stretch out your wallet. Having said that, net2phone Office Pro is far from perfect. Our research gave it a measly 2.4/5 for external connections because of the limited menu of systems you can sync it with. It also scores a 3/4 for features and security, placing it behind others like Dialpad Pro, RingCentral Premium, and 8×8 X2.

What's New For net2phone?

Since our last round of tests, net2phone reduced the price of its two cheapest plans: Office went from $24.99 per user per month to $18.99 per user per month, and Office Pro went from $26.99 per user per month to $22.99 per user per month.

7. Nuacom Unlimited – Best Small Business Phone System For Customer Satisfaction

nuacom scorecard 2
Nuacom Unlimited
3.5
Pricing $24.99
Quick overview

Based on our in-depth research, Nuacom has the highest customer satisfaction in the VoIP sector, earning an average of 4.6/5 from its users from sites like Capterra, Trustpilot, G2, and TrustRadius. Although more limited in its features for small businesses, when compared to providers like 8x8, Nuacom has been trusted by key clients like Credit Union and Volkswagen. If you’re looking for a provider that has a track record of pleasing its users, you should look no further than Nuacom.

Strengths

Impressive collection of positive customer reviews

Unlimited user limit

Generous inbound communication features

Weaknesses

Does not offer analytics or email integration

Not transparent about its compliance certification, and does not provide multi-facet authentication or password rules

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Unlimited $24.99
Enterprise Custom

What Makes Nuacom Unlimited A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: compared to other providers like 8×8 and Vonage, Nuacom has a limited offering of external connections. Although you can sync your telephone system with CRM, Helpdesk, internal live chat and email integration, you can only do so with Hubspot, Slack, and Google Workspace. This means Nuacom is not integrable with Web Conferencing, external live chat, analytics, SSO, and does not offer an open API.
  • Onboarding support: it’s offered as a 15-minute onboarding support session.
  • Scalability: with a requirement to have at least two users, Nuacom comes equipped with call queue and ring groups, which can help you manage a large call volume. However, this isn’t necessarily the most scalable solution as you’d be missing out on a number of management features, like customizable call routing, call monitoring, call-flow designers, and setting up teams. You also won’t have access to video conferencing, which can complicate keeping your team connected when working remotely

How Does Nuacom Unlimited Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Our research has given Nuacom a 3.5/5, which places it in the seventh spot on our best telephone systems for small business comparison – right before Ooma. Nuacom’s average customer review score of 4.6/5 places it in the pole position of customer satisfaction, with Ooma and Dialpad racing close behind at 4.4/5. That said, Nuacom scored just 2.6/5 for its features and 2/5 for security, so if you want lots of features and more stringently protected data, 8×8 or Dialpad would be a better phone system for your small business.

What's New For Nuacom?

Since our last assessment, Nuacom introduced mandatory call tags and notes features in July 2023. It also stopped offering its Call Center plan: this solution is now available as a separate feature to its main plans, for a custom price.

8. Ooma Office Pro – Best Small Business Phone System For Value

Ooma Office Pro
3.5
Pricing $24.95
Quick overview

Offering one of the cheapest price points of all the providers we look at here, it’s pretty obvious why we think Ooma Office Pro is the best small business phone system for its price. Although it is quite limited in terms of external connections and security (we gave it a 2/5 and 1/5, respectively), it’s a good option if you’re simply not in a position to invest a bunch of cash in a VoIP system. What we do like about Ooma is that its system is incredibly easy to set up. Ooma can supply dedicated desk phones that work out of the box, and they can be configured in less than 15 minutes.

Strengths

Roster of features specifically tailored toward small businesses that work remotely or from the office

Not tied to a contract – can use the system for as long as needed and can be easily canceled on demand

Competitive pricing that won’t break the bank

Weaknesses

Only comes with 35+ features, less than others on this list

Scores 1/5 for security in our research

Very limited offering of external connections

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Essentials $19.95
Pro $24.95
Pro Plus $29.95

What Makes Ooma Office Pro A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: similar to net2phone Office Pro, Ooma Office Pro has a very thin offering of software integrations. The only options you to sync it with are Gmail and Outlook for email integrations, and Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 for Workspace integrations. For this reason, we’ve given it a sad ⅖ for external connections. It would be best to look elsewhere if you are in the market for the Swiss army knife of unified small business communications.
  • Onboarding support: this is not offered to Ooma Office Pro subscribers.
  • Scalability: Ooma Office Pro is quite limited in terms of scalability. Within management features, you only have access to call recording, customisable call routing, and analytics. Although it does offer ring groups and video conferencing, the lack of call queue and team messaging does limit Ooma Office Pro’s usefulness when it comes to dealing with large call volumes and working remotely.

How Does Ooma Office Pro Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

As the provider with one of the cheapest subscription plans for small businesses, Ooma Office Pro comfortably scores a 5/5 in our research, placing it on the same league as 8×8 X2, Nextiva Essential, Nuacom Unlimited, and Google Voice Standard. However, keep in mind that the low upfront cost does come with some setbacks. Our research has given Ooma a 2/5 for external connections because it doesn’t offer a great range of software to sync with. So, if this is make or break for you, you’d be better off choosing RingCentral Premium, which scored 4.3/5 in the same category. Ooma also isn’t great for security, scoring 1/5. Want a safety guarantee? 8×8 X2 and Google Voice are better alternatives because they both score a stellar 5/5.

Did You Know?

VoIP saves businesses an average of 32 call minutes daily.

9. Google Voice Standard – Best Small Business Phone System For Security

google voice
Google Voice Standard
3.5
Pricing $20
Quick overview

Chosen by companies like Dow Jones and ZPG, Google Voice is a top player for clients who are already big fans of Google in their workspace. Using Google AI within multiple aspects of its operation, from blocking spam to transcribing voicemails, Google Voice is known for its robust security features and its seamless integration with all other things Google.

Although our research has given Google Voice a 2.8/5 for external connections and 2.6/5 for features, which puts it far behind 8x8 and RingCentral, if you’re already happy with all the Google products that businesses tend to use, the setup will be fairly straightforward and painless.

Strengths

Fantastic for Google users

Top-rated security features

Weaknesses

Difficult to integrate with other non-Google systems

Customer support is quite restricted compared to other providers

Limited range of available features

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Starter $10
Standard $20
Premier $30

What Makes Google Voice Standard A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: although you can sync Google Voice with CRM and helpdesk platforms like Zoho, Copper, Pipedrive, Salesforce, and Hubspot, you’ll have to use flagship Google products for email, web conferencing, and workspace capabilities.
  • Onboarding support: this is not available to Google Voice Standard subscribers.
  • Scalability: although Google Voice offers the bare minimum of management features — just analytics and customizable call routing — it does have pretty much every single security feature you’d need to feel confident your operation is properly protected. It also includes web conferencing and internal live chat if you’re happy to use Google Meet and Google Chat. Therefore, what it lacks in management features is made up for in terms of security. Keep in mind that this isn’t a golden solution to scale up your business.

How Does Google Voice Standard Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Our researchers have put the key features offered by Google Voice for small business to the test and have given it a 3.5/5. While it’s a great option for Google users, its limited offer of features gives it a 2.6/5 in this category. In terms of features, it matches Nuacom, but lags far behind others like RingCentral and 8×8. However, what it does excel in is security, which is the reason we gave it an excellent 5/5. Only 8×8 is able to equal Google Voice in security.

What's New For Google Voice?

Since our last testing, Google Voice upped the prices of its two top tiers. Standard went from $16 per user per month to $20 per user per month, and Premier went from $24 per user per month to $30 per user per month.

10. Vonage Premium – Best Small Business Phone System For Team Collaboration

Vonage logo
Vonage Premium
3.5
Pricing $29.99
Quick overview

Boasting a set of shiny team collaboration features like team messaging, document sharing, and video conferencing, we like Vonage because it helps keep your entire team on the same page, with a healthy workflow, that helps optimize the operation of your business.. Also, Vonage embraces AI in its Premium subscription plan and it will give your small business the flexibility it needs to keep customers happy and scale up your operation. Its provision of tools, metrics, and data gives you a 360-degree view of the interactions between your customers and agents. This enables you to turn insights into actionable items that can heighten your ROI.

Vonage Premium offers a wide range of customer support features and its low monthly costs are a recipe for scaling up your operation. Although these come at an additional cost, Vonage lets you tap into its wide set of ready-made integrations, as it’s compatible with Hubspot, Salesforce, Zendesk, Slack, and Office 365. This allows you to unify all your business communications in one spot, giving your agents all the necessary tools to provide the best possible customer service.

Strengths

Customizable dashboards and wallboards give you real-time visibility of KPI progress

Displays a local number when reaching out to customers, improving response rate

Solid customer support service

Weaknesses

Security is not as robust compared to other phone system providers

Some useful training and management features not available at Professional

Pricing
PlanStarting price (per user, per month)
Mobile $19.99
Premium $29.99
Advanced $39.99

What Makes Vonage Premium A Top Small Business Phone System?

  • Software integrations: although it comes at an additional cost, you can integrate Vonage’s phone system with a wide range of software platforms, including Hubspot, Slack, Office 365, Salesforce, and Zendesk. However, if you want to access web conferencing, you’ll need to use Unytalk, which costs extra.
  • Onboarding support: this is only available at an additional cost.
  • Scalability: Vonage Premium gives you the right foundations to scale up your business through call queue, ring groups, an unlimited number of users, call recording, call monitoring, and analytics.. It also integrates seamlessly with Slack, which allows you to set up a remote operation that could slash costs.

How Does Vonage Premium Compare To Other Telephone Systems For Small Businesses?

Backed by our thorough research, which considered software integrations, onboarding support, and the scalability of each small business phone system, we gave Vonage a 3.5/5 for small businesses. Although other providers like Google Voice, Ooma, and Nuacom race at the same speed, Vonage strides ahead of them because of its solid offer of scalable features. For this reason, we awarded it a 4.5/5 for scalability.

However, we did give Vonage a 3/5 for security because it’s missing multi-factor authentication and password rules, features provided by competitors like Google Voice, RingCentral, and 8×8.

Get personalized phone system prices from the best providers for you

Should I Switch My Small Business Phone System?

If you already use a small business phone system and is looking to switch, you should consider these two factors.

Switch cost

Signing up with a VoIP provider, like the ones we featured on this list, is very straightforward. If your current contract is running out, you can dive right into your potential providers' features and choose based on that.

However, if you're thinking of leaving your current provider early, you do have to check if you'll incur an early termination fee by doing that.

Take this cost and divide it for the number of months you still have left in your contract. If it's more than the monthly cost of the provider you're looking to sign up with, it's cheaper to wait it out and switch later.

Business plan

You also need to consider your expectations for your next small business phone system and those go hand in hand with your company's current business plan.

  • If cost-cutting and rightsizing are your top priorities at the moment, go for economical providers like Zoom Phone and Ooma Office;
  • If you're aiming to scale up, then providers such as 8×8 and RingCentral will serve you better;
  • Or if you're looking to amp up efficiency with the best technology available, AI-assisted providers like Dialpad can really expand on what a VoIP system can do.

The Best Features Of A Small Business Phone System

As a small business, there's three main aspects and pain points that you'll want to be addressed by your new small business phone system.

  • Money: you'll want to find a provider with low up-front monthly fees, inclusive domestic minutes, a provision of multiple communication channels like messenger and video, and solid customer support
  • Integrability: at this stage of growth, your business will likely already have an existing IT infrastructure. As such, you'll want a provider that can seamlessly integrate into your business's operation like ready-made integrations for CRM, Workspace, email, web conferencing, internal messaging, external messaging, and onboarding support. You'll also want a system that is compatible with multiple brands of desktop phones.
  • Scalability: you want to avoid adopting a system you'll outgrow with time so you'll want to go for a provider that offers unlimited amount of users, call queue, ring groups, a solid set of management features to help organize business-wide communications, internal messaging, video conference, and good security features.

How Much Does A Telephone System For A Small Business Cost?

The cost of a phone system for a small business can vary depending on various factors. On average, a small business can expect to spend between $20 and $50 per user per month for a cloud-based VoIP phone system.

Monthly costs vary among providers and are influenced by factors such as the number of lines required, inbound/outbound minutes, international calls, and desired features. For instance, 8×8 offers different pricing tiers starting from $12 per user per month for their X2 plan, which includes unlimited calling within the US. Zoom Phone provides plans starting at $10 per user per month, offering features like domestic and international calling. RingCentral offers different pricing tiers, with their Essentials plan starting at $19.99 per user per month and including features like unlimited calling within the US.

Upfront costs may include purchasing or leasing hardware equipment like desk phones. For example, the cost of desk phones for 8×8 can range from $80 to $500, depending on the model and features.

Training costs depend on the complexity of the system and the level of support provided by the vendor. While some providers offer self-service training materials and resources at no additional cost, others may charge for personalized training sessions or on-site support. It's essential to consider these potential training expenses when evaluating the overall cost.

Scalability costs come into play as the business grows and additional lines or features are needed. Providers like 8×8, Zoom Phone, and RingCentral offer scalable plans that allow businesses to easily add or remove users and adjust their subscription based on evolving needs. The cost of scaling up the phone system can vary depending on the specific requirements and the provider's pricing structure.

Methodology: How Did We Compare The Best Phone Systems For Small Businesses?

Our team of independent researchers has conducted an extensive analysis of 11 leading phone system suppliers to identify the top 10 providers for small businesses. We prioritized the key features required by small businesses in a VoIP phone system, focusing on onboarding and management capabilities, as well as ready-made integrations to enhance your operations.

We’ve also aggregated customer reviews from platforms like Trustpilot and Capterra to assure you that our knowledge is not only robust on paper, but also in practice. Regardless of which choice you make to meet the demands of your small business, our research-backed recommendations will match you with the most suitable players in the VoIP market.

We looked at various research areas including:

  • Features: including inbound communication, outbound communication, and conversation features.
  • Support and security: this looked at whether the provider has features such as 24/7 support, live chat, and a knowledge base.
  • Scalability score: this score is based on the system's ability to scale with business growth.

Each area is scored and combined to produce an overall score for each provider.

Verdict

Even though you’re spoilt for choice with ten great VoIP providers out there, our top-rated recommendations are 8×8 X2 and Zoom Phone Unlimited. Whether they’re the right choice for your small business is, of course, up to you. But we believe they offer affordable packages and come with modern, unified communications features, and they’re more flexible and easy to use both remotely and in the office – all points to consider if you’re a small business!

You’re not alone in decrypting all the options in the VoIP-verse and we want to help you cut through the noise and find you the right small business phone system

Whether you’re feeling ready to make a choice, or you’d still like to ask more questions to providers, you can fill in our quick and free comparison tool to fast-forward you into adopting your new small business phone system. Simply answer a few questions about the needs of your business and we’ll match you with the phone system providers you should know about. They’ll be in touch with free, tailored, no-obligation quotes and answers to your questions.

The Best Phone Systems For Small Businesses: FAQs

What is the best phone system for a small business?
Based on our in-depth research, we’ve found that the best options out there for small businesses are 8×8 X2 and Zoom Phone Unlimited. They’re relatively affordable, come with unified communications features, and they’re more flexible and easy to use both remotely and in the office – all points to consider if you’re a small business! If you want to learn more, scroll up and read our reviews of 8×8 and Zoom Phone.
How do I choose the best small business phone system?
When making the crucial choice of which VoIP phone system to bring into your small business, there are a couple of key features that can help you make your decision less stressful and complicated. You can consider money, compatibility, and scalability.
How much does a small business phone system cost?
A small business phone system doesn’t need to cost you a fortune! Depending on what you’re looking for, and the anatomy of your small business, a VoIP phone system can cost anywhere from $16 per user, per month up to $34.99 per user, per month. These costs also mean that you pay way less than you usually would for a landline phone, which often requires pricey hardware and maintenance.
What is the best office phone system?
The best business office phone overall is the Cisco 7841. Ticking all the business phone boxes, the Cisco 7841 is an affordable and reliable companion for any desk, suitable for organizations with wide-ranging needs.

It offers wideband audio (high-definition sound), high-resolution displays, a built-in speakerphone, and dedicated short cut fixed keys, enabling you to seamlessly switch to speakerphone, the directory, messaging, and other functions.

This phone is our top pick for offices because it provides quality and cost-effectiveness in equal measure, giving all the features your team should need for a very reasonable price.

Do small businesses still use landlines?
Not really! Thanks to their competitive prices and a wide ranging menu of features, it comes as no surprise that small businesses are choosing to make the transition to VoIP.. VoIP systems are more intuitive, better at dealing with a large number of inbound callers, and offer a lot of flexibility as you can make calls using the internet.
Should I get a cell phone for my business?
With the blessing of VoIP technology, you actually don’t need to! If you have a VoIP provider and a reliable internet connection, you can make and receive calls from your computer, a deskphone, or your mobile device.
Written by:
Fernanda is a Mexican-born Expert Market writer, specialising in providing in-depth insights about business software to help businesses of all shapes and sizes thrive. From VoIP systems to project management software, she’s passionate about helping businesses find the tools and methods that will help give them an edge over their competitors. Fernanda has ample journalistic experience, having written for a multitude of online magazines about topics ranging from Latin American politics to cryptocurrency.
Reviewed by:
James thinks all businesses can improve if they use the right technology. At Expert Market, he utilises his 4+ years experience as a researcher to offer specialised advice on a wide range of categories from CRM to Fleet Management.