It can be surprising to learn that there are still 43 million fax machines being used around the world every day. This seemingly outdated practice is alive and well, as many companies from a variety of industries still rely on fax for their communication needs. But for small businesses that rely more on sustainable and cost-effective solutions, cloud faxing offers a more convenient and economical option than the traditional fax machine.
While traditional faxing has been dominant in the market for decades, it does have its shortcomings. Businesses have to deal with a lot of excess paperwork from the copies and confirmations, and there is a lot of cost associated with running and maintaining a fax machine over time. The manual process of scanning, sending and receiving faxes, as well as having to organize and store the paperwork afterwards can limit the efficiency of service delivery.
Luckily for small businesses, cloud faxing can help eliminate many of those issues and improve the overall workflow efficiency in the office. Here’s why small businesses should be embracing cloud faxing today:
Cloud Faxing 101
Cloud faxing is also known as email-based faxing, online faxing, and internet faxing. Rather than dealing with traditional fax machines and paperwork, cloud faxing allows businesses to send and receive faxes digitally and store the information online. Only an active account is needed to get started with cloud faxing technology, as well as a strong internet connection.
Learning how to send a fax from a computer, mobile phone, or tablet is as easy as sending an email. While most providers do integrate their cloud faxing services with email programs, others allow businesses to use more than one fax number for a single account. The latter solution works best for businesses with multiple departments that receive multiple documents regularly.
Cloud Faxing Promotes Device Interoperability
Small businesses are known to embrace tech solutions and innovation to push the boundaries of their efficiency. Sadly, conventional fax machines end up complicating the communication workflow in a small businesses environment. For instance, a business owner may need to send a report to one of their clients for a specific service request that needs to be delivered. The business owner first needs to access a fax machine to scan and send the report, as well as hope the recipient checks their fax machine.
With cloud faxing, both parties only need to have a phone, laptop, or even tablet to access the documents being shared. The business owner could send the document through their laptop, and the client can access it on an app on their phone or vice-versa. In turn, this improved interoperability between devices saves time and effort.
Cloud Faxing Prevents Misdirected Content
When a business inadvertently sends a document to the wrong recipient, confidential data is accidentally sent to a third party by mistake. These errors are common in traditional faxing, and come with huge security complications and potential legal action, depending on the content.
Although physical faxes do offer logs that can help identify the recipient of a document, accessing such data isn’t always easy. Accessing the same data on cloud faxing solutions is much more straightforward, and these logs are updated often. Cloud faxing solutions remember fax numbers for repeat recipients, which reduces the risks of making errors from manually inputting fax numbers.
Small Business Owners are Familiar with Cloud Solutions
Small business owners today, who mostly fall under the millennial and Gen Z generations, are already online wizards, largely due to growing up in the digital age. For them, a physical fax machine could actually feel more complicated than its online version. With the various components, ink cartridges and buttons, it can be daunting to learn how to use a traditional fax machine, and especially troubleshoot problems. Luckily, cloud faxing offers all the benefits of traditional fax machines in a more familiar modality for this demographic.
Cloud faxing solutions aren’t meant to replace physical faxes, but should rather improve the faxing technology for the modern age. The two can work together, to provide solutions to any faxing requirements a small business may need. For small businesses that want to embrace the digital world while holding on to traditional faxing as a way of communication, cloud faxing is an ideal solution.