RingCentral vs 8×8: Which Is the Better Option for a Small Business Startup?

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Selecting a good and reliable phone system for your business makes all the difference in offering a smooth and professional service to your clients and customers. However, with so many VoIP service providers available today, all offering similar features and comparable pricing, the choice of the right service provider is a tough one. In this article, we will be discussing the two major players RingCentral and 8×8 to see which is a better option for small business startups.

RingCentral vs 8×8

Highlights

RingCentral

RingCentral is an industry leader for VoIP-based phone services for businesses of all sizes and is especially well suited towards small businesses and startups. RingCentral offers plenty of integration options, an excellent mobile app and good pricing plans. The service of RingCentral is very clear and smooth, making it a leader among all the service providers in the market.

 

Pros
  • Unmatched quality
  • Integrates with several platforms such as Google, Microsoft, Salesforce, Zendesk, etc.
  • Seamless mobile integration

 

8×8

8×8 is also an extremely popular US-based VoIP service provider that offers excellent connectivity and pricing plans as low as $25 per month. 8×8 offers all the features and tools needed for a small business, especially if it is a startup. 8×8 is rated highly by experts for its excellent range of features, ease of usage and affordability.

 

Pros
  • Highly customizable plans
  • A wide range of features

 

Ease of Usage

Both RingCentral, as well as 8×8, are cloud-based VoIP service providers and both do not have any complex setup process, expensive equipment or complicated wiring. All you need is a stable internet connection and a regular VoIP-based phone for both services and you can have them up and running in a jiffy. The setting up of the account and management is usually via the portal of the company and this is extremely convenient as you can access the portal from anywhere and at any time you want.

 

RingCentral

The user interface of RingCentral is very user friendly and it has simple descriptive icons, clear sections and very easy commands that makes the system extremely easy to follow. RingCentral also provides how-to videos that guide you step by step for the setup and management.

 

8×8

8×8 offers an hour-long introduction session with a technician to help you understand the platform and the details of your account. This is an excellent feature for people who like a guide-based learning system, although, some people may find this process time consuming.

 

Integrations

Both RingCentral and 8×8 offer integration with most CRM platforms and if you’re making use of a phone system that does not integrate with any of the brands offered, then this will make your choice of the VoIP service provider easier. For instance, RingCentral does not have integration with NetSuite, SugarCRM or ACT, while 8×8 does not integrate with Box or Oracle.

 

Mobility

Both the service providers, RingCentral and 8×8 offer many mobile apps that allow easy mobile integration and both services are available on Android and iOS devices.

 

RingCentral

The mobile app starts with a tutorial along with pop-up hints and quick solution tips. You can check your call logs, contacts, message and it has a Quick Dial pad for calling on your mobile.

8×8

8×8 has a modern and fresh-looking app that is quite popular with its users. It has an extremely easy-to-use and intuitive user interface. However, the options and ability to customize is limited making the 8×8 app less appealing compared to RingCentral.

 

Features

Both RingCentral and 8×8 offer all the basic services that the other VoIP service providers also provide such as call forwarding, auto-attendant, hold music, caller ID, conference bridge, web-based admin system, call blocking, call waiting, call transfer, ring groups, voicemail to email. Sharing a single line on multiple devices, etc. and both the service providers have mobile apps that allow you to make and receive your calls when on the move.

 

8×8

The array of advanced features you get from 8×8 depends on the plan you select. 8×8 offers their Virtual Office Desktop app which includes features like a softphone, SMS services, conference calls, online faxing, call recording, etc. 8×8 is also compliant with many regulating bodies like PCI, FISMA and HIPAA, making it ideal for the e-commerce and healthcare industries. The best feature of 8×8 is that businesses who make a lot of international calls may find 8×8 more cost efficient.

 

RingCentral

Like 8×8’s Virtual Office, RingCentral’s product is RingCentral For Desktop which has a fantastic array of features which are included in the plans already available. However, 8×8 will require you to upgrade to the Pro package to have access to these features. Some of the main features included in RingCentral’s package are 1,000 toll-free minutes, unlimited voice conferencing and integrations with platforms such as Google, Microsoft, Desk.com and Dropbox.

 

Plans and Pricing

RingCentral

RingCentral offers 4 pricing tiers:

 

Essentials (Per Month)
  • 1 User: $39.99
  • 2-99 Users: $29.99
  • 100-999 Users: NA
  • 1,000-1,999 Users: NA
  • The plan includes:
    • Unlimited audio and video meetings with screen sharing on mobile and desktop: 4 people/ meeting.
    • Toll-free Minutes: 100

It also includes unlimited phone calls & business SMS, phone system administration and call management, phone rental options (conference and desk phones), mobile apps for Android and iOS, HD voice, voicemail to email, visual voicemail, team collaboration, integration with Google, Microsoft, Okta and Box, professional implementation and 24×7 support.

 

Standard (Per Month)
  • 1 User: $49.99
  • 2-99 Users: $34.99
  • 100-999 Users: $32.99
  • 1,000-1,999 Users: $29.99
  • The plan includes:
    • Unlimited audio and video meetings with screen sharing on mobile and desktop: 4 people/ meeting.
    • Toll-free Minutes: 1,000

The plan includes all features of the Essentials Plan plus multi-level auto-attendant, call log reports and internet fax.

 

Premium (Per Month)
  • 1 User: $54.99
  • 2-99 Users: $44.99
  • 100-999 Users: $42.99
  • 1,000-1,999 Users: $39.99
  • The plan includes:
    • Unlimited audio & video meetings with screen sharing on mobile and desktop: 100 people/ meeting.
    • Toll-free Minutes: 2,500

The plan includes all features of the Standard Plan plus automatic call recording, custom app development & deployment, multi-site support, integration with Salesforce, Zendesk and Desk.com, voicemail to text and single sign-on.

 

Ultimate (Per Month)
  • 1 User: $69.99
  • 2-99 Users: $59.99
  • 100-999 Users: $52.99
  • 1,000-1,999 Users: $49.99
  • The plan includes:
    • Unlimited audio & video meetings with screen sharing on mobile and desktop: 200 people/ meeting.
    • Toll-free Minutes: 10,000

The Ultimate plan includes all features of the Premium Plan.

 

8×8

8×8 has 3 pricing plans:

X2 Edition
  • Cost: $25
  • Unlimited Calling Zone: 14 countries
  • Media Storage: 1GB
  • Audio & Video Conferencing: 5 participants

The plan includes a phone number and virtual extension, unlimited internet fax, desktop and mobile apps, business SMS, virtual office analytics, instant presence and messaging, voicemail, auto-attendant, HD voice, call queuing, secure voice, single sign-on and CRM integration with NetSuite, Zendesk and Salesforce.

 

X5 Edition
  • Cost: $35
  • Unlimited Calling Zone: 32 countries
  • Media Storage: 5GB
  • Audio & Video Conferencing: 25 participants

The plan includes all features of the X2 plan plus call recording and operator switchboard.

 

X8 Edition
  • Cost: $55
  • Unlimited Calling Zone: 47 countries
  • Media Storage: 10GB
  • Audio & Video Conferencing: 50 participants

The plan includes all features of the X5 plan plus call quality analytics and reporting, analytics supervisor, inbound and outbound contact center, contact center call recording storage, visual IVR and contact center reporting and analytics.

 

Customer Support

RingCentral

RingCentral offers very excellent customer service support and you can contact the customer service team via chat (which is available 24×7), phone (from 8 am to 9 pm EST) or email for personal assistance. RingCentral also has several videos, online articles, weekly webinars, blogs and a forum for extra help you may require.

 

However, a major drawback of the customer support of RingCentral is that the US-based customer support is available only to larger customers with more than 20 users. All accounts with more than 3 users have a dedicated rep assigned who will help with the setup of the system and this support is US based only if your business has more than 10 users.

 

8×8

8×8 offers excellent resources on its website that makes troubleshooting any issue extremely simple. There are setup guides, user guides and forums that connect you with other 8×8 users so that you can clarify your queries. 8×8 also provides customer support via online chat and phone.

So, in short, the competition between RingCentral and 8×8 is very close. While 8×8 provides excellent options for integration and offers extremely competitive rates for international calls and unlimited international calling for certain countries, RingCentral is stronger overall, in terms of its competitively priced plans, excellent features for calling, tools for collaboration and CRM integration and call management and reporting functions for contact centers. It also has an easy to use user interface, which makes starting up of your account and account management very easy.

 

Both RingCentral and 8×8 have their strengths and drawbacks, and as a small business owner, you must consider what your business requires from the phone system — the features you will need most, expected growth of your business and scalability of the phone system and finally your budget, before taking a decision on the right phone system for your business.

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