Unlike traditional fax machines, an email-to-fax service allows you to send and receive a fax just as you would send an email. All you do is sign on to the online portal provided by the service provider, draft a new message, attach the file you want to fax, input the recipient’s fax number and send. Receiving a fax simply involves specifying an email address where the document will go.
This email to fax service can be a valuable tool for small businesses. Here is why.
1. Not Limited by Hardware
With email-to-fax you can send and receive faxes regardless of your physical location. All you need is an internet connection. You are not tied down to the location of a physical fax machine. Your desktop computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone becomes your fax machine, as required.
2. Reduced Cost of Ownership
Acquiring and maintaining a traditional fax machine can be expensive. You must replace the ink or toner, buy fax paper, and account for calling costs and electricity consumption, while also dedicating a space for the machine. There’s also the wastage due to spam and misrouted faxes.
With email-to-fax, any unsolicited or unwelcome faxes you receive can simply be deleted from your inbox. You also do not need to buy or maintain a fax machine.
With traditional fax, there is a real risk of failing to receive an important fax on time because the fax machine did not have paper or had malfunctioned.
No such problems exist with email-to-fax. As long as the internet connection is working, you receive faxes in real time. And even when you do not have access to the internet, you will find the faxes sent when you were offline waiting for you in your email’s inbox.
Email-to-fax services are consistent with the drive for a paperless office. You only print what you need to. Otherwise, faxes you receive can be disseminated to other recipients via email. That is in contrast to traditional fax where all messages received are printed.
Each time a business moves to an email-to-fax service, it plays its own small part in saving trees and conserving the environment.
5. Never Busy
People working in organizations with a single fax number and fax machine understand the inconvenience of a sender getting a busy signal because another message is coming through. If the document is urgently required, those precious minutes can make a huge difference in concluding a business deal or winning a contract.
With email-to-fax services, multiple faxes can be sent to the same fax number simultaneously. There is no concern that the faxes could get lost or fail to go through because the number is engaged.
6. Same Fax Number
Organizations rarely change their contact information such as phone numbers, fax numbers, email addresses or website addresses. They have widely shared this information and doing so is a time-consuming process that may not reach everyone who needs to know.
A key advantage of moving to email-to-fax is that you do not need to change your existing fax number. The whole switch is opaque to customers, vendors and business partners. They can continue sending faxes the same way as before.
7. SMS Alerts
Email-to-fax services are usually cloud-based, so they are accessible from anywhere as long as you have an internet connection. However, if you want to be notified immediately about when you receive a fax, even when you are offline, you could sign up for text alerts.
With these, you can provide the number where you want alerts sent to and these will be relayed to you in real time. This service may not be offered by all online faxing companies, so confirm with your provider if it is something you wish to take advantage of.
A Competitive Advantage
Small businesses do not have the deep pockets that global corporations do. Therefore, every opportunity you can find to cut costs, streamline processes and improve efficiency should be harnessed. Moving to an email-to-fax service is an important step forward in this regard.