Businesses that have multiple locations have unique phone system needs. While you need phone service in each of your stores or offices, you don't necessarily want separate phone systems for each. You want a system that can connect systems in multiple places and be controlled from one central location.
Today's cloud-hosted VoIP phone systems are an ideal solution for businesses with multiple locations. Since these are cloud-hosted systems, there is no equipment to purchase and install in each location. Instead, you can get your system up and running in each location by plugging phones into your network. Once plugged in, they are ready to use and can be managed online from a single administrator portal. The administrator can set system settings for one location or all of them, and they can assign phone numbers and monitor call logs for the entire company. Not having to purchase on-premises PBX equipment for each location can be a huge cost-saver for businesses with more than one office or store.
With regard to features, businesses with multiple locations may have some special needs. Scalability is a crucial one. You want a system that gives you the option to add more lines on the fly. It is also important to be able to forward calls to any device. The option to forward calls from their office phone to their mobile device or a phone in one of your other locations will be important for employees who work in more than one of your offices or stores. Company directories, extension dialing and call routing are other valuable features for businesses with more than one location.
Nextiva is our choice as the best business phone system for businesses with multiple locations because it is a cloud-based VoIP system that can spread across several offices and stores yet still be managed from one central platform. The system is simple to get up and running, and the online portal is easy to navigate. The phone system is extremely reliable, offers several service plans and includes top-notch customer support. Nextiva also has a wealth of valuable calling, collaboration, and mobile features and tools. Additionally, Nextiva offers call center and virtual services.
View all our recommendations for business phone systems on our best picks page.
Competitive Pricing and Terms
Nextiva Office is available in three service plans – Office Pro, Office Pro Plus and Office Enterprise – that differ in price and features. Each plan's price varies based on the number of employees using the system and whether you sign a 36-month contract. Monthly per-user prices range from $19.95 to $44.95.
Nextiva doesn't require businesses to sign long-term contracts. You can sign up for month-to-month service and cancel at any time. However, prices drop when you do agree to a 36-month contract. There are no setup fees or hidden charges.
Each of the three service plans include unlimited calling, free local and toll-free numbers, voicemail-to-email, virtual faxing, music on hold, shared call appearance, and the barge-in tool. Here's how the plans differ:
- For 1-4 users, the Office Pro plan costs $34.95 per user per month without a contract and $32.95 per user per month for those who commit to a three-year deal. The price drops by $5 per user for businesses with 5-19 employees, $10 per user for businesses with 21-99 employees, and $13 per user for businesses with more than 100 employees.
- The Office Pro Plus plan includes one professional recorded greeting, conference calling, access to the mobile app, the Call Me Now tool and the team presence feature. For businesses with 1-4 employees, the plan costs $37.95 per user per month without a contract and $35.95 per user per month for those with a three-year contract. The price drops by $5 for each user for businesses with 5-19 workers, $10 per user for businesses with 21-99 workers, and $13 per user for businesses with more than 100 workers.
- The most expensive option is the Office Enterprise plan. It includes everything in the Office Pro plan plus three professional recorded greetings, call recording and the Nextiva Anywhere feature. In addition, it provides a wide range of analytics, automation and administration tools. For businesses with 1-4 employees, the plan costs $44.95 per user per month without a contract and $42.95 per user per month for those with a three-year contract. The price drops by $5 for each user for businesses with 5-19 employees, $10 per user for businesses with 21-99 employees, and $13 per user for businesses with more than 100 employees.
On all plans, you can get voicemail-to-text for an additional $2.95 per user per month.
Nextiva also offers contact center services, which businesses with multiple locations may need. There are two different contact center service plans: Pro and Enterprise. The Pro plan is $50 per user per month and includes advanced IVRs, automatic callback, unlimited call queues, enhanced greeting and queue announcements, auto-attendant recordings, automatic call distribution, queue and skill-based routing, remote agent support, voicemail-to-email, call recording, estimated wait times, bounced and stranded call services, and some analytics.
The Enterprise plan is $100.95 per user per month and includes everything in the Pro plan, plus configurable call handling, night and holiday service, whisper messages, queue management, flexible disposition and unavailable codes, upgraded supervisor controls, enhanced analytics, and outgoing call control.
Contact center upgrades include conferencing for $20-$50 per month, a receptionist dashboard for $40 per month, a supervisor dashboard for $70 per month, an agent dashboard for $30 per month, instant messaging and team presence for $3 per month, and CRM integration for $2-$5 per user per month.
Nextiva also offers a wide selection of desk and conference phones that range from $70 to $625.
Nextiva Office offers just about every calling, collaboration, and mobile feature and tool a small business would need in a phone system.
- Calling features include unlimited local and long-distance calling, unlimited online faxing, an automated attendant, music on hold, HD call connections, and the option to receive voicemails via email and text messages.
- One great tool for businesses with multiple locations is the shared call appearance. This allows you to assign the same line to several phones. This lets employees make and receive calls on their own lines from more than one location.
- The Nextiva Anywhere feature is a valuable tool for employees who often work outside the office. They can have calls made to their business lines ring not only their desktop phones but any other phones of their choosing, such as their mobile or home phones.
- One feature that Nextiva offers that not all other business phone system providers have is the Call Me Now tool. With this, customers and clients visiting your website can click on a link or icon and immediately start a call with your representatives.
- Other features include a dial-by-name directory, Do Not Disturb, group paging, Hoteling Guest, hunt groups, selective call acceptance, intercoms, three-way calling, call return, caller ID, directed call pickup, call recording, custom ring-backs and silent call monitoring.
- The system also offers a number of collaboration tools that assist employees in working with each other, such as video conferencing, screen sharing, a presence tool that shows which employees are available and which are busy, and instant messaging.
- Nextiva's mobile app, available on iOS and Android devices, lets employees make and receive phone calls on their business lines, make video calls, chat via instant message with co-workers, access the company directory, and update and modify call settings. In addition, you can start calls on a desk phone and move them instantly to a mobile device, and vice versa.
- Another nice feature is the softphone. This allows you to make and receive calls from your desktop computer or laptop. To use this tool, all you have to do is plug headphones into your computer or use the microphone and speakers to make and receive calls.
- The system also offers a selection of analytics that allow you to keep close tabs on your company's calls. You can see real-time call activity and generate historical reports for a more complete picture.
- The Enterprise plan offers a number of advanced intelligence features that give you an analytical idea of how you are treating each customer and the experience your customers are having. Specific features include a customer experience score, customer journey tracking, customer health score analysis and customer benchmarking.
- Some administration features are only available in the Enterprise plan, including a central source for customer data, a database builder, custom forms, the ability to set roles and permissions for each user, and department management.
- Nextiva offers contact center solutions that include advanced interactive voice response (IVR), call queues, call recording, and remote agent support that allows employers to set up phone service for call center agents who aren't located in the office.
- Besides its traditional phone system and contact center services, Nextiva offers a virtual-only system, online fax service, cloud storage and PBX SIP trunking.
Nextiva has a complete conference calling service built into its phone system. With the conference bridge feature, which is included for no extra charge, each employee has the ability to hold their own conference call with up to nine callers. If your company is looking to host conference calls with more people than this, you will need to use a conference calling service. These services allow for hundreds, sometimes thousands, of people on each call. You can find more information on these services on our conference call services best picks page.
Ease of Use
Nextiva is a cloud-hosted VoIP phone system that doesn't require any equipment or hardware. All it needs is a high-speed internet connection and IP phones.
- Since this is a cloud-hosted system, you don't need an IT team to install or maintain it. Nextiva provides all maintenance and handles all of the upgrades.
- The entire system is run and configured through Nextiva's online portal, which is divided into several sections: Account Setup, Services, Usage and Billing. The online portal is used to add employees to the system, assign phone numbers and user IDs, record automated greetings, and create call-queue routes and priorities. You can also use the portal to designate which features each employee can access.
- Employees can also access the system online. From either a Windows or Mac desktop app, they can log in to the system to set preferences, change settings, conduct video conferences with screen sharing and chat with co-workers.
- If you are an established business and want to keep your current phone numbers, you do have that option with Nextiva. You can transfer local or toll-free numbers over to Nextiva after you have signed up for the service. This process typically takes 2-4 weeks to complete. There is an extra fee for this service.
- Nextiva is an extremely reliable service. The company has a reported uptime of 99.999 percent. This means that there are rarely any lengthy outages of the service. You can always visit the Nextiva website to view performance stats, such as the uptime for each of its services. According to the uptime status tracker, the Nextiva Office platform hasn't had a service outage since November 2016. Nextiva also has a number of fully redundant data centers worldwide to ensure its customers never lose service.
We were very impressed with the customer service from Nextiva. To determine the level of support a typical customer would receive, we contacted the company multiple times by phone, email and live chat, posing as a new business owner interested in phone systems.
During our interactions, the Nextiva representatives could not have given us a clearer understanding of what the company has to offer. They spent as much time as we needed going over how the system works, its features, uptime stats and pricing. When possible, some representatives even took the time to demonstrate the different features. For example, one rep toggled back and forth between a regular connection and an HD connection to show us how much clearer it was and put us on hold so we could hear the on-hold music and announcements.
We especially liked that the representatives didn't try to pressure us to make a quick decision on purchasing the service. They were always respectful of our needs and timelines. We didn't get that respect from many of the other services we investigated.
After some of our calls, we followed up via email to see the type of response we got. Each time, a rep promptly responded with detailed answers to our questions and an offer for another call if we needed additional information.
We also tested out the live chat on several occasions. It was just as helpful. When we had quick questions, we sent them along and they were answered within seconds. Many of the other providers we looked into don't offer this support option, or weren't nearly as responsive with it as Nextiva was.
For users who need help, the entire support team is U.S.-based and available by phone, email and live chat from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. MT Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.
The pricing on Nextiva's website can be a bit misleading. The main prices shown on the website are for businesses with at least 100 employees that have signed a 36-month contract. It is important businesses understand that the price will go up if they have fewer employees and don't want to sign a contract. Be sure to run your mouse over the question mark next to the main price to get a better sense of what your costs will be.
Another potential drawback is that not everyone has access to the Nextiva mobile app. Businesses using the Office Pro plan cannot use it.
Editor's note: Looking for a business phone system? Click the Compare Quotes button below to have our sister site BuyerZone connect you with vendors that can help.
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