Find out more about Communications Software
What is Communications Software?
Communications Software is a set of web applications that make it possible for team members to exchange data and discuss corporate operations in real time. You can use it to transmit information from one system to another, exchange files in various formats, or simply discuss sensitive corporate data in a protected, internal environment. Popular communication software types are messaging apps, live chat systems, FTPs (file transfer protocols), VoIP, and email providers which make it possible to communicate at low to no cost. If looking for the best communication system on the market, consider our leader RingCentral, and other popular performers we listed in this category.
Top 10 Most Popular Communications Software
How To Choose The Best Communications Software
Though communications software programs are becoming increasingly popular, many SMEs are not aware of their usefulness and how they can help their business. Most platforms in this category have been traditionally targeted at large organizations that have their own call centers. Of late, online tools have been launched that can be used by businesses of all sizes and types. This article details the different types of communications software, which businesses they are targeted at, the top communications software providers in each category, the list of key features, and main benefits. You can also read our detailed reviews of the top 10 communications software.
Get to know each product with a free trial
In most instances, you should go and try out at least a few free trial plans or demo from the most popular and best communications software. With that approach you will be able to try out the major features and you should get a good comparison of the best Communications software solutions before you spend any money on one. The best thing to do is to try services that currently have the highest SmartScore rankings and Customer Satisfaction Rating in our communications software reviews: RingCentral reviews, 8×8 VoIP, CDMessenger, ClickDesk, 8×8 Call Center, Vocalcom, Campaign Monitor, LiveChat, Zoho Meeting, DeskRoll, and MyOwnConference.
For Unified Communications Software and Call Center Software:
- These products are ideal for companies focused on relationship and support management and looking to add customer support and call center capabilities.
- High-volume call centers that wish to invest in desktop devices for their agents.
- Headquarters of big companies that have in-house customer service and numerous telephone lines.
- Small businesses such as e-commerce companies and marketing agencies that provide customer support over phone.
For Web Conferencing and Video Software:
Ideal for businesses with multiple branches and clients in many locations. This software can be used to reduce travel costs as it can be utilized for conference calls, training purposes, and interactions with team members and customers.
For Live Chat Software:
- E-commerce sites and IT vendors can offer live help to improve customer experience.
- Call centers can use this software to provide additional services by way of text-based communication.
Communications Software For Enterprises
As we mentioned before, communications apps are most of the time directed towards large enterprises wishing to establish their internal communication network and to keep their large and decentralized teams connected. An elegant communications solution will seamlessly solve some of their biggest problems, including data reliability and excessive time consumption, in particular such that is scalable and well-integrated with the rest of their software architecture. Together with improved ROI rates, enterprises will get to save money communicating via third party applications and software, and will collaborate to keep all tasks in line with the firm’s long term mission and goals.
What are Examples of Communications Software?
For Unified Communications Software and Call Center Software:
- Five9: Offers many features such as real-time reporting, CRM integrations, speech recognition, IVR (Interactive Voice Response), and skills-based routing. Can be used by businesses of all sizes.
- 8×8 Virtual Contact Center: User-friendly suite that provides a pay-as-you-grow pricing model.
- RingCentral: Offers voice, conferencing, text, and fax solutions for businesses and freelancers.
- Vocalcom Cloud Contact Center: This product provides live chat, Visual IVR, and social media customer engagement at an affordable cost.
- Phone.com: Ideal for small business and medium-sized companies that can utilize its useful features such as text and fax services.
For Web Conferencing and Video Software:
- GoToMeeting: Ideal for all types of businesses and freelancers. Allows calls with up to 25 users. It allows sharing both on desktop applications as well as mobile devices, and integrates with Microsoft Outlook to facilitate scheduling.
- ClickMeeting: Web-based app that allows document sharing, screen sharing, and whiteboard presentations.
- Speek: Allows conference calling and call recording. This app is easy to use and works great on mobile devices.
- GoToWebinar: Ideal app for webinars involving up to 1,000 participants. Works both on PC and Mac.
For Live Chat Software:
- HelpOnClick Live Chat Software: Easy to install and offers a real-time website traffic monitor that can be used to invite visitors for a chat.
- RumbleTalk: Offered in over 20 languages. Websites can use this chatroom platform. The app can be utilized to offer a customized experience by creating your personal CSS skin or related themes.
For details on other popular apps and to do detailed comparisons, browse our article on the top 15 communications solutions.
Types of Communications Software
Unified Communications Software and Call Center Software: These software products are a suite that offer features such as email or telephony management tools, PBX (Private Branch Exchange), and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). They are used in call centers and companies with a huge amount of telephone lines.
Web Conferencing and Video Software: This type of software is used for conducting online meetings and webinars with video connection on desktop and mobile, and includes document and screen sharing capabilities.
Live Chat: This type of software is installed on websites to enable businesses to provide personalized customer support. It provides reports on the browsing behavior of website visitors which can be used to create customized chat and support experiences. The data can also be used to create and manage advertising campaigns.
Key Features of Communications Software
- Cloud PBX – Utilizes the benefits of cloud service to offer a phone system over the internet.
- Auto-Receptionist – Handles and forwards calls automatically without manual aid.
- Call Forwarding – Forwards calls accurately to the right internal unit and individual employee.
- Call Recording – Helps to record calls for future reference and training purposes.
- Video Conferencing – You can conduct virtual meetings with team members in diverse locations around the world.
- Audio Conferencing – You can chat with team members in other locations through this feature.
- Internet Fax – Makes use of internet protocol to send faxes.
- Voicemail and Greeting – Offers a bunch of greetings as well as voicemail facility to record messages when you are not available.
- Multi-level IVR – Expands the capability of the auto-receptionist feature to manage large volume of incoming calls.
Benefits of Communications Software
The best communications software for you business is supposed to offer the following benefits:
- Improve Your Communication Capabilities: An integrated communications system can help to automate communication processes so that users are able to communicate effectively with one another regardless of device, location, or media type.
- Boost Personal and Business Productivity: A scalable solution can offer quick payback and improve performance and speed in a high volume atmosphere.
- Increase Accuracy: Minimize manual intervention and boost the reliability, accuracy, and speed of information exchange between users.
- Gain Flexibility: Scale the range and number of communication channels to keep up with the growing requirements of your business.
- Improve Compliance: Use centralized rights management and tracking to capture all important communication events in accordance with regulatory requirements.
- Reduce Administration and Infrastructure Costs: Use a consolidated communications solution to minimize the cost of maintaining multiple device-specific channels.
- Unified Communications: Unified communication is the integration of real-time and near real-time communication solutions. This means the integration of phone, chat services, messaging, video conferencing, commenting and feedback systems, and others. Unified communications provide a consistent user interface across multiple media types and devices. The advantage is you can reduce infrastructure expenses and offer more features for a responsive experience.
- Video Conferencing: Traditionally, video conferencing was used in boardroom meetings. The new trend is the use of video-enabled tablets and smartphones that allow users to call from anywhere, anytime. Web-based video conferencing enables teams to discuss in virtual rooms to boost collaboration. The latest video conferencing systems offer collaboration features such as screen sharing, text chat, and document sharing.
- Issues with Unified Communications: Unified communications makes use of a single computer-based system to handle phone, chat, video, document sharing etc. But there can be problems with this method. First, you have to purchase a one-size-fits-all service (on-premise or cloud-hosted) and then ensure all users have compatible tools to utilize the software. This affects portability, which is essential for communication.
- Absence of Unified Communications Apps on the Four Main Platforms: The need of the hour is consistent and compatible unified communications apps on the four most popular platforms: Windows, Mac OS, iOS, and Android. But, no vendor provides such an offering. Microsoft comes close with its Lync solution, but the product’s development has taken many years which has created big compatibility gaps. This means the Lync platform is not that effective if your workforce is location-flexible, multiplatform, and mobile.
We hope this article has updated you on the features and benefits of popular types of communications software, and the top vendors in each category. Choose a suitable product based on your needs and the features offered.
List of Communications Software Companies
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Our Score Read More
Our platform utilizes our proprietary SmartScore™ method to analyze all the software in the Communications Software category to help you pick the best possible application. It analyzes the following elements: core components, collaboration tools, customization, available integrations, ease of use, customer support, how secure a software is, support for smartphones and tablets, media rating. Currently, RingCentral is the leader in this category and we gave it the highest score in our tests. After extensive testing it got the best results among its competitors and we strongly suggest that you consider it as one of the choices for your business.
User Satisfaction Read More
A summary of total user satisfaction with the software in our Communications Software category evaluated with our unique algorythm that finds user reviews, comments and opinions across a broad range of social media platforms in order to help you make an educated purchase decision.
Pricing Read More
Every vendor in the Communications Software category will have a different set of pricing plans for its service and every package will include a different group of features. Below we list the general pricing for the most affordable package provided for each product. Keep in mind that advanced features may cost extra.
Devices Supported Read More
A summary of what type of devices and operating systems are supported by all B2B services in the Communications Software category, including mobile platforms and web-based solutions.
Laguages Supported Read More
Find out which languages and countries are supported by the best B2B apps in the Communications Software category, including services intended for international markets and created for multi-cultural groups of employees.
Pricing Model Read More
Learn which pricing plans are supported by the vendors in the Communications Software category to see which one matches your business preferences and budget best. Be aware that some solutions can provide free or freemium accounts for you to test first.
Customer Types Read More
An overview of which groups of companies a selected B2B software in the Communications Software category aims for, from small businesses and non-profits to big enterprises.
Deployment Read More
An overview of what kinds of software deployement are provided by each B2B vendor in the Communications Software category. Even though the majority of modern SaaS services are cloud-based there are services may offer an on-site deployment model too.