In the era of digital technologies and paperless communication, paper-ink faxing machines may seem to go obsolete in the near future. However, faxing is still a large part of corporate life, especially for offices that need to send over signed documents around. This has resulted in the emergence of online faxing, which has seen a rapid rise in usage during recent years.
If you don’t know what online fax is, it is a service that allows you or your company to send and receive fax documents using your computer, without any physical fax machine. You can think of it as the fac upgrade of your office fax operations. This very basic description of eFax may sound like sending an email with a file attached to it, but there are quite a few differences!
To help you understand better what online faxing is, in case you are looking to get rid of your fax machine, in this article, we take a look at 6 online faxing features you need to pay attention to.
Security and Encription
The key advantage of traditional fax over email was traditionally the security, as telephone lines were harder to hack than email. This enhanced safety feature was inherited by its digital counterpart as well. Nowadays, special platforms like Lemlist can also help make the email campaign processes much easier, even with fax. Check out Lemlist pricing for further information.
There are many different ways online fax is kept secure, and it can significantly vary based on which eFax service provider you choose. Some of the key security methods are
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Encryption - SSL encryption is a standard security technology used online. SSL encryption is what keeps your information safe when you are surfing the Internet using a browser.
Confirmation emails - You can double-secure your online fax account by going with the confirmation email option. This way, every time an email is sent from your fax account, you’ll receive an email requiring confirmation. This is an important option especially if you want to integrate it with your CRM. If you receive such an email without sending a fax, you’ll know that your account is compromised.
Firewalls - Web app firewalls also help secure your online fax account from attacks and forgery, providing additional safety.
Traditional fax machines were very handy when it came to sending around signed documents, and that’s why a signature sent via fax was legally binding. Online fax too solves this pain point of many businesses that need to send around documents (renters insurance paperwork, for example) daily. When available with your eFax provider, the digital signature option is a very comfortable feature that can help almost any individual or brand. It can help to cut any additional steps you'd need to take (e.g., signing the document physically, scanning it again) and allows you to save time. By using special tools, you can even add a widget of digital signature to your website in case your partner businesses or clients need it.
With this feature, you can simply add your signature to any document before sending it. With different service providers, you can create a digital signature in your account and then drag and drop it to every document, ensuring that your signature is consistent everywhere.
When looking for online fax providers, make sure to check if they have this feature as it comes in very handy.
Fax scheduling may seem like a very trivial feature, but it's a very useful one, especially if you have used physical fax machines before. When sending a fax, before, you needed to be at a specific physical location at a specific time to send the fax. This issue is common with emails now: we are not confined to space, but we need to physically write and send the email to have it delivered at the right time. This was especially inconvenient if the document needed to be sent to someone in another time zone, transferring your fax at just the right time.
Scheduling solves this problem, as you can prepare and sign your document prior and have it sent to whoever you need. So whether you’re sharing an employee appreciation document or a new contract, you can schedule all types of actions and be more organized.
Screening For Junk Fax
According to Spencer Farber, Founder, Cliently, "junk mail is everywhere: we receive it in our physical inbox, junk mail, and even promotional calls. Unfortunately, fax is not safeguarded from junk mail that tries to reach your fax machine and your online fax."
The good news is, online fax comes with pre-installed spam filters that, like in email, scan every fax you receive and filter out spam and junk messages. You can also choose to whitelist or blacklist contacts to make sure fax messages from specific contacts always reach your inbox or are always sent to spam.
Another handy feature of online fax is the integrations.
As time goes by and the workplaces increasingly switch to digital, productivity platforms also develop and start to integrate with each other. This means that they can interact with each other without you taking specific manual actions. The obvious benefits of this are increased productivity and less distraction.
According to Marvin Magusara, ISO Cleanroom, "online fax functionalities are easy to integrate with many different platforms, offering speed and ease of use." Depending on what productivity tools you are using, check the offerings of the online fax solution providers to find the one that fits your company's needs the best.
The last feature of online fax we want to discuss is the ability to add multiple users to your online fax account. Not to be confused with each user having a separate account; this function allows you to keep all the documents in one place, your main account. However, you can add emails of your coworkers, and they can use their credentials to access the account. This allows you to be in control of the documents sent as part of your corporation, as well as cut down costs because multiple users are included in one subscription plan.
Online faxing is a powerful tool that, if used correctly, can solve the pain points of using traditional fax and even email. It will also help your brand boost productivity and cut costs of buying and maintaining the fax machine. This was not an exhaustive list of online fax features, but these were some of the key ones. Take your time to consider them, as well as do further research to find the best solution for your brand. Good luck!