Home » Product Alternatives » Google Voice App Review for Small Businesses: Pros and Cons
Google Voice App Review for Small Businesses: Pros and Cons
Phone Number Porting
Yuan Yang
Content Editor and Customer Support at Textr
Published Mar 5, 2021

Whether you are a solopreneur, freelancer, small business owner, or service provider, a business number will separate you from the pack and establish you as a professional in your field. Google Voice business numbers and Google Voice text messages are popular options for companies, but are they the best alternatives for business communications? Read on to find out more.

What is Google Voice?

Google Voice is a Google service that provides business owners with a single internet-based phone number to connect with multiple phones. The Google Voice business number is static and will follow you to new devices, homes, and phone service providers.

Google Voice delivers a range of services, including call screening, blocked numbers, and rules you can apply to each caller. It’s also possible for Google Voice business calls to be transcribed and forwarded as a text message alert to any smartphone.

How Does Google Voice Work?

When a user signs up for a Google Voice business service, it provides them with a phone number that can connect with multiple devices across different locations. Google Voice can work with desk phones, mobile phones, VoIP lines, and work phones. You can manage each device to the level where a phone will only ring with specific callers.

What can Google Voice Do?

The service is very versatile and is loaded with features, including:

  • Switch phones mid-call
  • free PC-to-PC global voice and video calling
  • Conference voice calls
  • Block unwanted numbers
  • SMS and email notification of voicemails
  • Record Google Voice calls
  • Cheaper international calls
  • Voicemail transcriptions
  • Routing calls
  • Set specific phones to ring only with certain callers
  • Listen to voicemail before answering

As far as google voice price goes, many of the services are free, but features like call recording will require signing up for a paid service.

Google voice price mileage will vary according to how you plan on using the service. Google applies a charge to international calls. The Google Voice price is free, but changing your number will be an added cost.

You need your own phone to use Google Voice, and in most cases, a phone number as well. Google Project Fi is an exception where your Google Voice number can become your regular number.

When you first sign up for the service, you will select a phone number from a pool of numbers. You can use your service provider’s assigned number as your Google Voice number, but this will limit some features available through the service.

Once you have chosen your number, you can set which devices will work with the service.

Google Voice Business Vs Personal

Google Voice business services are more comprehensive than those for personal use. 

For example, Google Voice accounts can only have one user, while Google Voice business workspace accounts can have from 10 users to unlimited. Personal use is limited to calls within the U.S., while Google Workspace users can call 11 different countries, with more coming soon. 

Other Google Voice business features not available with a personal account include:

  • Do not disturb based on Calendar working hours
  • Identify Google Meet calls
  • Desk phone compatibility
  • Classic hangouts integration
  • Forward text messages to linked numbers
  • Add contacts from a corporate directory
  • Auto attendants

Pros of Google Voice

The most obvious advantage of Google Voice is you no longer have to hand out multiple phone numbers. The one Google Voice number can simultaneously connect with multiple devices. Here are a few more reasons to consider a Google Voice business service:

Digital Integration

You can make and receive calls from all your registered devices, but you can also use Google Voice business services to access voice mails, SMS text messages and make and receive video calls from a page that is like a Gmail inbox. 

These facilities are available on desktop PCs, Android devices, and iOS devices. If voicemail isn’t your thing, you can also choose to receive voice mails as a transcribed text message. 

Keep Your Established Number

If you would rather not have new business cards printed, you can port over an existing number. The process usually takes a day or two, and it will delete any dedicated Google Voice numbers within 90 days.

Superior Call Screening

Google Voice will use your address book to improve your call experience. However, for users not in your contacts list, the service can add extra security by asking callers to record their name or turn on call screening, so every caller will need to supply vocal identification.

Cons of Google Voice

Google Voice is not perfect and does come with a few limitations, so it is not a one-size-fits-all solution for every business. Here are just a few considerations to keep in mind. 

Unreliable Caller ID

The Google Voice app will show calls as arriving from your GVoice number, while calls arriving from your mobile device will use your personal ID. Google has also shown it has syncing issues with contacts from other services like Google Hangouts. It all adds up to possible confusion between business and personal calls. 

Complex Setup for Multimedia 

Google Voice is flexible in its digital integrations. However, standard Google Voice requires integrating with Google Hangouts when using more advanced messaging features like sending pictures, video, group messages, or MMS (Multimedia Message Service). It’s another app you have to integrate into your routine.

Lack of Personal Tech Support

Whenever there is an issue with your phone numbers, getting help from Google will be difficult. Unlike other services where you could email or call in person, Google does not provide a one-on-one support service. Instead, you will need to browse Google’s online help page or rely on the advice of other users in the Google Voice Help Forum.

No Emergency Calls

You cannot use Google Voice to make 9-1-1 calls. Porting your existing number over to Google Voice business services will mean you need an alternative solution for emergency calls.

Is Google Voice Right for Your Business?

Google Voice is a free number, but that doesn’t mean it will work for every business. However, it is suited to small enterprises of fewer than 10 people. 

Consultants, contractors, solo freelancers, and frequent travelers may also find value using Google Voice because of the many free features that other VoIP service providers charge for as part of their solutions.

The free Google Voice business number may not be worth it to some companies because of its limitations. One of Google Voice’s most significant drawbacks is that it currently only works in the U.S.

They also limit a Google Voice number to the account holder who signed up for it. Google Voice does not have the capability for multiple team members to share a line for customer service. You would need to use a separate phone system to implement this feature. 

Personalized responses are not a feature of Google Voice. A separate service will be necessary if your company sends personalized messages like birthday or anniversary specials, payment reminders, promotions or similar.

Google Voice Alternatives

Fortunately, there are excellent alternatives to Google Voice available, but without many of its shortfalls. 

Textr is an all-in-one phone and text service with convenient features similar to Google Voice text message, but with more advanced capabilities. 

Unlike Google Voice, Textr allows organizations to bring large teams together to collaborate on one platform. 

Desktop and smartphone apps synchronize in the background so teams can respond to customers and stay in touch wherever they are. When you add Textr to your arsenal, the left hand will always know what the right hand is doing. 

Your customers will receive a streamlined service, regardless of which team member is responding to their inquiry. Learn more about how Textr can improve your customer’s experience today.

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