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Apps and Software

How To Setup Skype For Your Business

Chris Moore - Friday, July 30, 2010

What Is Skype?

Well first lets just take a few quick sentences to describe what Skype is to those of you that aren't completely familiar with it. Skype is basically a piece of software that you can download to your PC or Mac and acts as both an Instant Messenger with Video and VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) phone. That last bit about VoIP essentially means that you can make phone calls over the internet to any landline or cell/mobile phone on the planet at a fraction of the cost of a regular phone, and this is the first powerful feature that Skype has for your business (or personal) life. So let's take a look at the services and functions Skype offer the business user...

Skype Free Instant Messaging and Video Calls

As with most free IM software, the instant messaging between other users of the software is completely free, including videos calls. Here at Synapse Media for example we have staff located in both the US and Australia and we find it quite quick and easy to message each other when small conversation is required. Email just sometimes doesn't quite convey conversation in real-time. We also regularly have weekly or monthly video meetings or 3-way phone calls. The only draw back here is that currently Skype only supports 2-way video calls, so if you want to add that 3rd person you are going to have to drop the video unfortunately.

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Skype and Calling External Phones

So as mention above, Skype can be used for Local, Domestic and International phone calls to landlines and cell phones. Within the US you can make calls to landlines or cells for only 2.4¢/min (Pre-Paid) or sign-up for a Skype subscription for only $2.99/mo and have the ability for unlimited calls to landlines and cells within the US and Canada - try and find a phone company that offers that! On top of that, your international calls will only cost you a fraction of what the phone companies charge. For example, you only pay $0.021/min to call the UK and Australia. Here at Synapse Media for example, we are on a $2.99 monthly plan and use Skype to call everyone across the world. Add a nice headset for improved quality and you've got a solution that will not only rival, but beat most phone plans out there. Find all the calling rates here : Skype Pay As You Go Rates

Also, once you have a little Skype credit in your account, you can send SMS cell phones all over the world. For SMS rate take a look at Skype SMS Rates

And of course whether you Pay As You Go, Subscribe or just use SMS, all these can be paid for via either credit card or Paypal.

Skype Online Number

So you download Skype and get it all up and running within your business, making video calls to employees, calling vendors and customers on their cells...but they can't call you back! Don't worry, you can also register for a Skype Online Number. A Skype Online Number will essentially allow you to register a number in your area on which anyone can call you. All you need to do is chose the country followed by the state and you will be presented with a list of area codes for your region and the ability to chose from thousands of numbers to fit that area code. You can even put in wildcard asterisks to search for your perfect number! Online numbers do come at a small cost of €15 (~$20) for 3 months or €50 ($65) for a full year but you can get a 50% discount if you are a Skype Subscriber. We have had a few of our clients start to operate like thisRead more about getting your own number here : Skype Online Numbers

Other Skype Features For Your Business

In part two we will cover a few more topics to help you make the most out of Skype for your business including:

  • Skype To Go Number
  • Voicemail
  • Call Forwarding
  • Skype Manager
  • Skype Connect