If you’re someone who’s owned or managed a business, odds are you’ve heard of cloud communications, and know what a cloud communication platform is. Probably ad nauseum.
But do you really understand the core features of a cloud communication platform – what makes it what it is? And do you understand how they could impact your business? If not, then this blog post is here to help! Below we explain 3 main features of a cloud communication platform, giving you the information you need to pick the best platform for your business.
If you’re ready, then let’s get started!
Core Feature #1: VoIP-Based Calling
A cloud communication platform allows companies to make and take calls over the internet using Voice over Internet Protocol. As such, cloud communication platforms have a strong, reliable VoIP network infrastructure. This infrastructure consists of a few basic parts:
A reliable Internet connection.
Because VoIP uses the internet to make phone calls, the quality of the call relies heavily on the quality of the connection. Slow connection? Choppy calls. Fast connection? Crystal-clear calls.
This acts as the “hub” for the VoIP system. It converts voice signals from your computer or phone into digital data, which can then be transmitted over the internet. The server also controls how many calls can be made at one time, how long a call can be, and how calls are routed from one place to another.
These electronic devices are used to connect VoIP devices to one another within a network and allow those devices to share data and “talk to” each other.
This piece of hardware connects all the devices in your network to the internet. It also ensures that data can travel from one device to another. Without the router, none of the VoIP devices in your network could communicate with each other. Many routers are also equipped with a firewall to protect the network from malicious cyberattacks.
Ranging from IP phones and desktop computers, these devices allow users to connect to the VoIP server via the router and make and receive calls using their Internet connection.
If all these parts are in good working order and set up to your provider’s satisfaction, your cloud communication platform will run smoothly and support all your important day-to-day calls. If it isn’t? It’s going to be a very bumpy ride.
Look for cloud communication platform providers that:
- Offer a built-in network
- Provide 99.999% uptime
- Know how to troubleshoot your devices if an issue arises.
Core Feature #2: Cloud-Based Software
Ever wonder what “the cloud” is? So do many people. But “the cloud” is just a nickname for a network of computers and storage systems connected to the internet where you can store important data. This allows you to access it securely from anywhere – no need to sit at a specific computer or locate a specific hard drive.
Which is what makes cloud communication platforms so useful. Because they are based in “the cloud” users can manage and share data, make and take calls, and more just by just logging into their online account. It also makes it easier for admins to add new users with just a few clicks. All they need is an internet-connected device.
But not all cloud communication platforms are created equal. So be sure your provider’s cloud-based software:
- Offers top-notch cloud security features to protect your data. This is an absolute must. While storing your data online is the standard for most businesses, it also can be risky.
- Has an easy-to-use interface. No one’s going to want to use a system that’s counterintuitive.
- Is equipped with all the features you currently have and the ones you’d like to have in the future (business messaging, voicemail-to-email transcription, advanced call management, etc.). Why pay for a system that doesn’t have what you need?
Core Feature #3: API Connectivity
One of the key components of a cloud communication platform is the ability to connect with other platforms via custom-built APIs. API stands for “Application Programming Interface” and it is a set of virtual protocols that help different software to communicate with one another.
The best cloud communication platforms have APIs that:
- Allow businesses to create a unified communication platform unique to their needs quickly and easily.
- Are built on industry standards, allowing developers to use code they are familiar with.
- Connect to a wide variety of products, so businesses can pick one that is most appropriate for their needs.
- Come with clear documentation and support so businesses can integrate with other tools without any problems.
- Give businesses the chance to keep up with changes in communication technology and provide new services for their customers.
By utilizing APIs provided by their cloud communication platform, businesses can automate internal processes and find important information faster. And these benefits result in a better experience for their customers.
So, if you’re hunting for a cloud communication platform provider, be sure that they offer API connectivity with your current software. Whether it’s SalesForce, Asana, Zendesk, or any other app, having the ability to fully integrate your software with your communication platform is invaluable.
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With our extensive VoIP network, secure cloud software, custom APIs, and a whole lot more, our exCloud platform’s a powerful, all-in-one communications tool for any business. But don’t take our word for it! Try exCloud yourself today with a free week-long demo and see how it can transform your business!