There are many benefits, such as security, cost and convenience for online faxes. Discover what online fax services are available for your business.
For many individuals, sending a fax seems like a dated concept, especially with email as an option. However, even before email was an option, many individuals had no uses for sending a fax. This is not because faxes do not serve a purpose, but because faxes are primarily used by businesses. In your personal life, you may never have a reason to send a fax, but there are many benefits to sending a fax at work. Faxing continues to be one of the most secure and reliable forms of sharing information.
Faxing technology has also continued to develop over the years. With more businesses relying on online communications, new faxing software was created, allowing you to send your fax digitally. Online faxing is preferred by businesses because it does not require as much equipment or any additional training. Listed below are some of the biggest benefits with online faxing, and top online fax software.
Compliance and Security
One of the reasons faxing has remained popular among businesses is due to legal compliances. There are many regulations that require companies to submit documents either through the mail or by fax. Mail is one of the least secure ways to send information, and also takes a long time to process. While priority mail is an option, it is expensive, and still has security risks. Sending a fax is done in the same day and has fewer security risks.
It is also the superior method for sending information back and forth. When addressing specific regulations, you are often required to send follow up documents. Trying to send these documents over the mail may end up taking weeks, while faxing all the necessary information is completed in a single day.
Online faxes offer even greater security than a traditional fax. With a normal fax, documents often sit on the machine for long periods of time, meaning someone else can retrieve the information. Email may seem like an alternative, but if you are sending sensitive information, you do not want to risk the email account becoming compromised and the data leaking. Online faxes send encrypted files, only decrypting when the receipt is ready to access the file from their personal account. Even if someone gets into the account, without a password, the fax remains encrypted, preventing the data from being stolen.
File encryption also provides an additional level of security if you need to hold onto faxes for archival purposes. Your fax portal provides more protection than an email account, and unlike with a physical document, you do not have to worry about losing the fax.
Cost and Convenience
Two other advantages of using online faxes are cost and convenience. With an online fax service, all you need to pay for is the initial software and your account. With a traditional fax system, you must buy the machine and frequently replace the ink. Businesses use ink much quicker because they are frequently sending and receiving large documents. Shifting from physical to virtual faxes often saves companies between $500 and $1,000 annually. With virtual faxes, you also eliminate the costs of an extra phone line or long-distance charges on your faxes.
Online faxing is a convenient method to securely send important information. All of your faxes are available by logging into your fax portal, no matter where you are located. You can schedule your faxes to go out at specific times, even if you are not present to send them. Digital faxes are easy to send, and with so many programs to choose from, you are bound to find a program with an easy-to-use interface. Online faxes also allow you to easily send and receive digital signatures.
Metrofax is a popular online fax service used by small businesses. It provides support for the majority of file types, has an easy to access fax portal and offers users mobile apps for both Android and Apple devices. Metrofax has a monthly fee, based on how many documents you want to send and receive. A basic account starts at $9.95 per month and allows sending and receiving up to 500 pages. The most expensive membership is $35.95 each month, and increases the number of pages to 2,500. A free 14-day trial is available to try out the service.
Fax.Plus is another online fax service primarily used by smaller businesses. It is one of the most affordable services, but it provides limited features compared to the larger services. The biggest draw is the price, costing $5.99 a month, allowing you to send and receive 100 pages. There are additional plans available, such as a $19.99 per month account that allows you to send 800 pages, but it is the basic plan that attracts the most businesses. Fax.Plus also has a free option, which lets you send 10 pages per month, which is a good option if your business only sends out the occasional document.
Sfax is a pricier online fax service, and it is only available in the United States and Canada. It is commonly used by healthcare businesses because it offers HIPPA-complaint faxing options. It has a sleek interface, and supports multiple users accessing an account at once. A basic plan starts at $29 a month and allows you to send and receive 350 pages. A $99 account is available, which increases the page limit to 1,500.
Biscom does not have as many plans as other companies. The basic plan costs $7.99 a month and supports 30 documents, while the $14.99 account lets you send and receive 300 pages. It provides multi-user support, allowing up to five users to access an account. You can opt for a free trial, which provides either 30 days of service or lets you send and receive 30 pages. As part of the security, Biscom does not store any faxes, so it is not a good option if you want to use your account as a fax archive.