7 Major Benefits Of Using An Online Fax Provider

Given today’s constantly changing communication platforms, operating any type of business can be a harrowing experience. Even well-seasoned business owners have to stay current and take full advantage of any new methods of communicating.

Online faxing uses an online account and the Internet to send and receive your faxes via email – usually in an email attachment. Faxes can also be sent to ordinary fax machines.

Granted, online fax services have been around for a while, but they do present major benefits or advantages over the old traditional fax machine. These advantages can’t be ignored if you want to stay competitive in today’s business climate.

So here are seven major benefits of using an online fax service or provider. Each benefit is discussed in detail – paying special attention to the positive effects it can have on your business.

1. Security

Security is not exactly the first thing that comes to mind when talking about the Internet but modern online fax services are extremely secure. With SSL encryption and highly protected online storage, your faxes are private and secure.

Keep in mind, your online fax account is like any other account on the web, you must take simple precautions to keep it safe. Change your passwords regularly and just to be on the safe side, delete any extremely sensitive company faxes you don’t want to fall into the wrong hands.

2. Reliable

The top fax providers are very reliable and trustworthy. They have years of experience providing businesses with all types of faxing. Whether you are sending a single fax or mass faxing to thousands of clients – these providers can get the job done.

Unlike traditional faxing, you can check online to see if your faxes have been received. You can also keep sending a fax until it has been delivered.

3. Multi or Cross-Platform

Your faxes can be sent and received from numerous modern platforms – including Web Apps, Fax API, iOS App, Email to Fax, Google Docs… and the list goes on. This is all important because your clients can receive faxes through countless platforms – ensuring your messages are received.

4. Easy To Use

Online faxing is very easy to use. Most services give you a web interface/account which you can access anywhere in the world where you have Internet service. All providers give you tutorials and walk-throughs to make sure your faxing is as seamless as possible. You can also Port your current fax number over to your new account with no loss of business.

Plus, you can sign documents with ease. In most cases, you simply upload a document to edit or sign before you send your fax – usually in PDF, TIF, DOC or JPG format.

5. Scalability

Perhaps one of the major benefits for businesses – big or small – is the scalability of online faxing. Most, if not all, providers have different faxing plans to suit your company’s needs. In other words, you can scale up your faxing requirements as your company grows.

Most online fax providers are enterprise-ready and you can easily adjust your account for maximum usage. This can save you time and money, especially if you have to ramp up or scale down your operations to meet your current business activities.

6. Flexible Pricing

All of the top fax providers have flexible pricing. This can be important if you are just starting a business and funds are tight. Most will have a free plan or trial so that you can check out the quality of their services before you buy. Most have three or four different fax plans – which you can upgrade to as your needs and budget permit.

Remember, online faxing is a paperless system so you won’t have the ongoing costs of paper and inks. You don’t have to purchase a fax machine which can also save you money.

7. Mobility

Perhaps one of the best benefits of using online fax is mobility. Obviously, since this is a web-based system, you can send and receive faxes from anywhere in the world. This makes any business mobile and flexible. Your business is not tied down to any one given location or specific business hours for that matter. This simply means you can be open for business 24/7.

To sum up, online faxing is secure, reliable, multi-platform, scalable, cost-effective, easy to use and mobile. All of these factors can be beneficial to any business or company. These benefits should also be taken into consideration when determining how effective or competitive you want your business to be in the future. Choose wisely.

Retrain Tardy Paying Clients to Improve Cash Flow

If you have historically allowed your clients to pay you after thirty or sixty days, you may find it hard to change their habit. Ensure you agree credit terms with your client when you initially set up an account for them to help avoid this issue. Ensure you consider any terms related to late payment fees, interest or even prompt payment discounts.

Communicating your terms and conditions to your clients

When you have agreed terms, re-iterate them to your client in writing so they are aware of when you expect them to pay you. It also makes sense to advise them how non or late payments will be addressed. For example, a three-step process may include: sending them a statement immediately their account falls due; then calling them after seven days overdue, and then referring them to a debt collection specialist after twenty-eight days.

Be firm – it’s your money!

Many small business owners are afraid to ask for payment when its due. They allow their clients to delay paying rather than risking losing clients by appearing “pushy” or too demanding. Be more assertive as your client has already received your service or goods. You’re effectively working for nothing until your paid – a sale is only a sale when you’re paid. The “squeaky wheel gets oiled first” – make sure you’re the important squeaky wheel.

Speeding up slow payers

Have you allowed your clients to pay after thirty days and now you want them to start paying after seven days? Changing their habit make require “baby steps” to improve cash flow.

Contact them much sooner and more frequently than you did previously. Call or email them after fourteen days if they’re used to paying after thirty days. Let them know your invoice is due and politely ask when they will settle your account. Or start putting pressure on a little earlier. A few days before your invoice is due send them a statement and highlight the due date. You could even call them to ensure they have received your invoice. If your client can’t (or won’t) pay your invoice in full consider taking a part-payment and giving them the option to pay in one or two instalments.

So give it a go – retrain your slow paying clients to improve your cash flow. By making a few small changes to your invoicing processes, you will be able to improve cash flow.