Why is faxing still a thing? The technology came to popularity in the 1980’s as an easy and somewhat secure way of transmitting documents. Fax machines turn your paper into auditory tones which are sent over the phone line and interpreted and reconstructed on the other side. While that all sounds great, fax requires a dedicated phone line and fax machine meaning you’re likely spending $500 dollars or more every year for antiquated technology. Don’t even think of using FedEx or Office Depot as sending my recent 18-page fax cost a whopping $32.50!
So why use it? Unfortunately, fax is still required in the business world. A generation gap exists where people have no idea how to scan and attach documents. Some companies won’t work with you without a fax. So what about the modern generation? Instead of faxing you can just scan/email documents. Heck, in 2015 we can take a photo with our cell phone and email from there!
We did the research on online fax services. These services bring faxing into the modern world. You can send electronic documents and have them come out as a fax on the other side, and faxes received simply show up as an email. There are tons of options and almost all are better than a traditional fax machine. So… what did we find to be the best? Read on.
This was the best overall option. Plans start $7.99/mo for 500 pages (in/out) which is plenty for most small businesses. Operation is simple: Simply email the fax number @rcfax.com (ie, email@example.com). What’s even nicer, they have an app! Send/Receive faxes straight from your iPhone/Android device. We found this feature extremely useful for the busy, on-the-go professional. Lastly, all your faxes can be set up to automatically save in Google Drive which is helpful for documentation purposes.
For those with minimal usage, this is a completely free option, though it requires the use of two services. eFax gives your own personal fax number and allows up to 10 free incoming pages/mo. FaxZero allows you to send faxes (up to 15 pages per fax) for free with the small caveat of an ad being placed at the bottom of your cover sheet. These services are basic but really, there’s no price better than free. Because they do exactly what they say and nothing more, combining these two services makes #2 on our list.
If money isn’t an issue, MyFax offers the most extensive list of options and is very modern and well designed next to its competitors. Basic plans start at $10/mo and allows you to send 100 pages and receive 200 so some businesses will need to upgrade. What’s nice about it? An option for a local fax number for one. It also allows you to schedule faxes at a future point in time, something nobody else does. MyFax supports more file types than the rest and allows you to email from PC/Mac or mobile just like RingCentral and it backs up the documents on it’s website.
Have you worked with these or other services? What are your thoughts?