03 Apr 7 Reasons Not to Buy Your Hosted VoIP Business Phone System from a Big Box Retailer
There are times when it makes sense to hop in the car and head to your nearest big-box retailer, such as when your kids (read: you) want the latest PS4 or Xbox One video game, or when you need to pick up a flash drive to store pictures of your “bucket list” dream trip to Augusta National (wait until you get to the glorious 13th hole).
However, there are also times when big box retailers don’t have the solution you need — in fact, they will add to your problems. And this is definitely the case with a hosted VoIP business phone system.
Here are the 7 reasons why big box + hosted VoIP = massive regret.
1. The “expert” giving you advice and answers probably knows less about hosted VoIP than you do.
Have you ever walked into a car dealership and, within about 30 seconds of talking with a salesperson, it becomes abundantly clear that you know more about the cars you’re looking at than he does? Well, that’s pretty much the same story at big box retailers.
The employees on the floor are not hosted VoIP specialists, for the simple reason that hosted VoIP specialists don’t work at big-box retailers. They work at reputable telecommunications companies that do not sell business phone systems one minute, and ergonomic staplers or vacuum cleaners the next.
2. Demo? What demo?
The closest thing you’ll experience to a demo at a big box retailer is watching a video or being handed a pamphlet with pictures of shiny, happy people making phone calls and giving each other high five’s (obviously because they are so elated with their phone system). But what if you actually want to peek under the hood and see how the system looks and works? Forget it.
3. You’ll be pushed into a purchase.
Some big-box retailers cheerfully advertise that their staff is non-commission based. That’s good, but as we’ve all experienced, this doesn’t mean that the buying process is pressure-free. Employees still need to “make their numbers” — and if they fail to do so, then it’s pink slip time. That may not be fair (and it often isn’t), but that’s the deal.
Because of this, if you start asking intelligent questions about things like jitter, lag, quality of service, routers — and so on — then one of two things will happen: you’ll either get tossed into the “look-i-loo” pile and the employee will brush you off and focus on another customer, or you will be aggressively pushed into making a purchase before you get the answers you need.
4. You won’t save money.
About the only reason, people head to big-box retailers is to save money — except this isn’t always the case! Contrary to popular belief, many items that are available at a lower (and sometimes significantly lower) price position are available at local specialty businesses, and hosted VoIP phone systems are no exception. When you compare apples to apples, you’ll pay more to get less. When has that ever been a good idea?
5. Forget about replacing parts.
Over time, you may want or need to replace a component of your hosted VoIP business phone system, such as a managed router. Big box retailers won’t be interested in selling you this part, and they may not even carry it. Why not? Because they’ll want you to buy a brand new system, which is much more profitable for them — and much more costly for you.
6. Local support is non-existent.
When you purchase a hosted VoIP phone system from a big box retailer, any support issues are between you and the mass market company that delivers the system. That means you’ll be spending a lot of time (we’re talking hours here) speaking with various so-called technical support reps who have very little interest in solving your problems. They made their money from you when you bought the service, and there is no profit margin for them to hire actual experts. So, when you have a problem, clear your day and prepare for plenty of frustration. If makes getting support from your cell phone provider seems like a walk in the park.
7. Loyalty will be a one-way street.
Big box retailers won’t lean forward to earn your loyalty, because their business model is based on volume, volume, and more volume. This is perfectly fine if you are aware of this from day one — i.e. that in terms of the financial value you are not even a pixel on their balance sheet, and they really don’t need you to refer them to other businesses in your network, or write testimonials about your experience. In fact, if you call them for support and say something like “I thought we had a strong business relationship,” the response will be either awkward silence or outright laughter.
The Carolina Digital Phone Difference!
At Carolina Digital Phone, we don’t operate on a “get ‘em in, get their money, and get ‘em out” model. We invest quality time to learn about your business’s unique needs and goals and provide a free live guided demo delivered over the web or in-person at your location.
And if you ultimately decide to choose us as your hosted VoIP business phone system partner, you can be assured that you will get exceptional value, total support before AND after the sale, and ongoing loyalty and commitment that you expect and deserve. Customers aren’t a number to us. They’re the most important people in our company, and they have been for 20 years.