Business phone systems have come a long way from relying on manual switchboards to utilizing the internet for calls. We’ve also seen phone systems such as cloud PBX and VoIP become faster and more intelligent. This enabled companies to further optimize and streamline their communication efforts.
However, as we move further into the age of social media and instant messaging, will business phone systems still remain relevant to operations? How will VoIP systems and UC platforms evolve in order to stay competitive? Moreover, what will be the challenges to business phone system implementation in the coming decades?
To help you answer these questions, we compiled the most important business phone systems statistics of 2019. We’ve sifted through several VoIP phone service consumer reports and communication data analysis. Likewise, we dug deep into news articles detailing the shifts in the business phone system industry. This way, you get a more accurate view of what to expect and what you can do to adapt.
Business Phone Systems Statistics Table of Contents:
Communication is the key to achieving stronger customer relations and improved efficiency in the workplace. In this light, the business phone system market share is expected to grow further in the coming years. Companies are investing more in their communication systems as well as putting more effort into training live agents. Thus, more vendors will further develop their business phone systems to cater to the changing requirements in the industry.
The number of corporate VoIP subscribers worldwide is projected to reach 204.8 billion in 2020. 
The global VoIP phone system market share will grow from $83 billion in 2015 to $140 billion in 2021. 
64% of businesses believe customers should always have the option to talk to an agent. 
60% of companies say that phone systems and live agents are their most urgent investment priorities 
Despite the popularity of social media, email, and self-service help centers, phone calls still remain an integral part of customer service. After all, in most cases, customers expect a hands-on experience from the companies they do business with. They don’t want to talk to bots for their inquiries but prefer interacting with humans.
65% of people prefer to contact a business by phone call versus only 24% who prefer a web form. 
75% of consumers believe that phone calls will help them get a quicker response from businesses.
Consumers prefer face-to-face interaction (23%) or talking to a real person on the phone (40%) for their issues. 
37% of people use their smartphones primarily for making phone calls. 
The total revenue of the VoIP industry is at $14 billion in 2019 with 1,519 of businesses making up the industry 
Annual growth of the VoIP industry is at a low of -3.6% from 2014 to 2019 
90% of US households had operational landline phones in 2004. Today the number has decreased to less than half with 54.9% having wireless telephones (mobile phones), June 2018 
The fixed VoIP market held a share of over 62% in 2018 and is predicted to dominate the market in 2025 with a share of 55%. 
Hosted PBX is 18.1% of the total PBX market in 2019. This is up from 3.6% in 2010 
The general costs for IP PBX for an organization with 1-20 employees is $16,867. This increase to over $1 million for organizations with more than 2,500 employees 
Statistics on Business Phone System Benefits
There are many cloud communication benefits for small businesses and even large companies. For starters, modern business phone systems can mobilize your teams and accelerate your response times. These speed up your processes and allow you to keep up with the demands of customers.
VoIP statistics show that 29% of companies switch to VoIP to simplify call forwarding to their mobile phones. 
VoIP and UC systems allow agents to take calls anywhere across the globe, increasing productivity by up to 20%. 
Another perk from investing in modern business phone systems is savings on operational costs. In addition, time spent on phone calls is reduced. Businesses are able to accommodate more customers without compromising service quality or going beyond the budget.
VoIP market research shows companies can save 50% to 75% on communication costs using VoIP instead of landline services. 
Small businesses using VoIP can decrease the cost of local calls by up to 40% and international costs by 90%. 
VoIP can trim down initial costs for startup businesses by roughly 90%. 
Businesses that utilize Unified Communications solutions save an average of 191 hours daily and 49,660 hours yearly. 
Having a Unified Communications or VoIP system help employees save an average of 32 call minutes per day. 
The subscription-based pricing model allows for an easy user and shopping experience. This leads to more sticking and less to churn. The monthly churn of hosted PBX services for SMBs is only 1.3%, 2019 
84% of IT managers report that mobility is very important. Thus, mobility is one of the factors for boosted PBX growth 
Solo workers and large teams of 7-11 employees get the biggest benefit from Unified Communications systems with 50% of businesses witnessing great benefits for teams of these sizes 
VoIP has helped 67% of employees believe that VoIP improves call handling, 63% of employees say it helps manage messages and 57% state that it helps them with remote work 
The setup cost for on-premise phone systems can start at $20,000. On the other hand, setup costs for a cloud phone system can be as low as $0 
Manage your system via a computer with an internet connection or a smartphone 
Features such as Video Conferencing, Day/Night Mode, and User Web Portals make newer hosted business phone systems a Unified Communications systems with advanced functions 
Adapting good business phone systems that have Unified Communications capabilities will allow you to integrate your new system with other platforms such as Skype, landline phones, and mobile phones, among others. 
Cost Reduction Rate for Businesses Using VoIP System
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Technology and Business Phone Systems Statistics
According to the Economist Intelligence Unit Report in 2017, 75% out of 200 business executives are implementing Artificial Intelligence within the next year for the various aspects of their operations. Business phone systems are no exception.
For the foreseeable future, VoIP, cloud PBX, and IVR will continue evolving and integrating technological advancements. Of course, as these systems evolve, so will operational workflows and protocols.
AI with chatbots will drive 95% of customer interactions by 2025. 
Deloitte Global predicts that the 5G network will open up new revenue opportunities for telecom companies as it rolls out this year. 
The prevalence of 5G is growing, with 72 operators testing the network in 2018 and 25 operators launching the service this 2019. Experts predict that this figure will double by the year 2020. 
VoIP promotes mobility for operations as well as makes Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) possible, a strategy that 53% of workers believe is key to improving productivity. 
The Asia Pacific is predicted to become the most dominant global VoIP services market and will reach $100 billion in revenue by the end of 2024 
By the end of 2019, we will witness more rollouts of MNP or Mobile Number Portability, where more service providers will allow users to migrate their previous numbers from other ISPs to MNP. 
There will be a growing demand for security in the near future. Surely, encryption will be the solution to this growing demand 
The education VoIP market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 18% up to 2025. This is thanks to the use of softphone applications and IP phones for seminars and class collaborations 
The SMB market will likely stay as the largest hosted PBX market in the near future 
Most Popular Business Phone Systems
RingCentral. An all-in-one business phone system designed to help businesses of any size to communicate more effectively. Read more about it in our comprehensive RingCentral review.
Axon Virtual PBX. Offers an advanced VoIP technology that facilitates better communications management. For more information, read our Axon Virtual PBX review.
Comcast VoIP. A scalable business phone solution provided by one of the biggest telecom providers in the US. This Comcast VoIP review discusses its core features, pricing, and other details.
Jive Voice. A cloud-based business phone system that’s designed to streamline business communications. If you want to know more about it, read this Jive Voice review.
Freshcaller. This cloud business phone solution is easy to set up and customize as well as doesn’t need any additional hardware to run. You can learn more about this system in this Freshcaller review.
Business Phone System Optimization Statistics
Business phone systems can only go so far. If you want to make the most out of your investment, it is best that you apply VoIP best practices as well as remain up-to-date on the business phone system optimization best practices.
Here, we can see that there are many ways for you to boost your usage of VoIP and UC systems. In addition to leveraging AI and a 5G network, as mentioned previously, many businesses also utilize time-tested strategies like adding click-to-call buttons to websites, monitoring the efficiency of calls as well as performing follow-up calls for sales.
70% of shoppers have utilized click-to-call buttons from search ads. 
Click-to-Call buttons are one of the most effective widgets you can place on your website as it can increase conversion rate by 200% when placed above the fold. 
Mobile search accounts for 48% of total call volume. It is closely followed by desktop search at 17%, desktop display at 11%, and content/review sites at 9%. 
55% of people view call monitoring as the best way to gain customer feedback. 
80% of sales transactions need at least five follow-up phone calls after an initial meeting to boost the chances of conversion. 
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Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Mobile Search: 48
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Desktop Search: 17
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Desktop Display: 11
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Content/Review Sites: 9
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Mobile Display: 3
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Radio: 3
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Email: 3
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses TV: 2
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Newspaper: 2
Top 10 Sources of Phone Calls for Businesses Directory: 2
Source: Invoca Call Intelligence Index
Business Phone System Challenges Statistics
More and more consumers are relying on their smartphones, rendering landlines obsolete. While these mobile devices may just as easily be used to make phone calls, a good chunk of smartphone owners simply aren’t using them for that purpose. Instead, they opt to utilize these gadgets mainly for social media, emailing, or even browsing the net. This means there will be fewer consumers who would contact your hotlines.
The only silver lining here is that most business phone systems are equipped to handle multiple communication channels, so investing in one won’t be a waste of money. Moreover, as we’ve discussed earlier, there is still a large fraction of consumers who would prefer to talk to live agents for their complex product or service inquiries.
The use of landline phones has dropped significantly, with 53.9% of United States households depending solely on their cellphones for communications. 
Younger people tend to use their phones as mini-computers rather than for phone calls. 
75% of adults in the United Kingdom have smartphones: 25% of which don’t use it for calls. 
Americans answer only 52% of calls to their mobile phones. 
If you intend to utilize VoIP for internal communications, you might be in for a challenge. First off, CEOs are increasingly avoiding the use of phone conferencing in order to boost more personal interactions within teams. Secondly, millennials, the generation comprising a majority of the current workforce, have some kind of aversion to making phone calls.
CEOs avoid defaulting to phone or video conferences unless necessary. In fact, 61% of their productive hours are spent on face-to-face interactions, and only 15% is spent on the phone. 
72% of millennials say that calls are not the most efficient way to resolve customer service issues. 
75% of millennials avoid phone calls because they are time-consuming. 
Millennials have apprehension anxiety when it comes to making phone calls. 81% feel they have to muster up the courage to make phone calls. 
Lastly, in terms of making yourself reachable to clients, it might be important to note that there is an increasing number of consumers who are turning to self-service rather than any other form of the customer service channel. In fact, it seems that industries are relying more on AI and bots to handle inquiries or on FAQs and knowledge bases as these can lower operational costs.
6 in 10 shoppers in the United States prefer using digital self-serve tools for inquiries. These include websites (24%), mobile apps (14%), voice response systems (13%), or online chat (12%). 
Experts predict that 85% of business relationships can be handled without human interaction by 2020. 
What Does It Mean for Your Business?
Newer, less disruptive communication channels are becoming a staple, and consumers are opting more for self-service support solutions. So, at first glance, the future of business phone systems seems bleak. However, the statistics we gathered say otherwise.
Business phone systems remain crucial software that you should add to your office setup checklist. These tools still prove highly effective in enhancing productivity in the office. Also, though customer care will use more AI, your clients will still prefer to connect with your brand through humans.
Of course, this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t leverage AI systems for your business phone systems. On the contrary, you should take advantage of newer technologies to keep up with the times. It is also imperative that you upgrade not only your communications software but also your workflow. In this regard, VoIP and UC can help streamline communications and operational processes.
If you don’t already have a business phone system or have yet to upgrade your existing system, don’t worry. There are plenty of VoIP software systems for small businesses and large enterprises that you can choose from. Hopefully, with this compilation of business phone systems statistics, you were able to get a good idea of what features you should look for in these software solutions as well as how you can enhance your usage of them in the future.
B2B & SaaS market analyst and senior writer for FinancesOnline. He is most interested in project management solutions, believing all businesses are a work in progress. From pitch deck to exit strategy, he is no stranger to project business hiccups and essentials. He has been involved in a few internet startups including a digital route planner for a triple A affiliate. His advice to vendors and users alike? "Think of benefits, not features."
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