SIP Trunk Pricing
Trying to decide if SIP trunking is right for your small business? Learn more about SIP trunk costs here
So you’ve decided that SIP trunking could be a good match for your business’ needs. And you may have reviewed some of the best SIP trunking providers too.
Great – so where do you go from here? Now’s the time to work out how much you’ll need to budget to implement SIP trunking into your company’s operations.
We’ll provide the key information you need to know about SIP trunk costs, including set-up, installation and call charges, as well as other factors to consider, like ensuring your internet connection and handsets are able to work with SIP trunking.
You can scroll through the article and read it section-by-section, or click the links above to head straight to the aspects you most want to learn about.
Alternatively, if you’re ready to compare quotes for telephone systems straight away, simply fill in the form top of this page – this can take the sting out of time-consuming market research.
Average SIP trunk costs UK
The price of SIP trunking for a business will comprise of several contributing costs, such as an installation fee (£300-£700), a monthly rental fee (£50-150) and call charges (variable) among others. It will also depend on different factors specific to the business, like how many users it has to cater for, how much bandwidth you need, and how many locations the system will be used in.
Key elements of SIP trunk pricing include:
|Type of fee||Average costs|
|Monthly service rental||£50-£150
The table below outlines more cost components of SIP trunking, and gives an indication of what you could expect to pay. These are approximate figures, as the exact amount will depend on your specific business requirements.
The figures are based on data from Spitfire, and other established SIP providers, to give you an idea about average SIP trunk costs in the UK.
|Call charges (between SIP trunks from same provider)||£0||Calls made to and from SIP trunks by the same provider are free, e.g. between multiple premises in the same business
|Call charges||Variable – charged on a pence per minute basis||The cost of making calls – usually offered as a pay-as-you-go or call bundle package
|Phone line costs||£0||SIP trunking operates through one network (the internet connection), so there aren’t any physical lines to pay for
|Number porting||Variable – often on a per number basis||Transfer your existing phone numbers and/or set up staff who are currently using an extension with their own direct line
|Channel cost||Under £5 through to £150+ per month, depending on number of channels||Charges vary depending on the number of channels your business needs. The cheapest cost is for one SIP line, whereas a call centre or other business that may need 10, 30 or more lines (for example) can expect to pay a higher amount
|Installation fee||£300-£700, depending on number of SIP trunks||To connect your phone system to SIP trunk services. The more SIP trunks your business requires, the higher the installation fee is likely to be
|Monthly rental fee||£50-£150, depending on number of SIP trunks||The cost to use the services each month – the more SIP trunks required, the more expensive the fee
What influences call costs?
The price you pay per call is comprised of several elements, such as:
- Line charges (but remember SIP trunking doesn’t use phone lines)
- Per minute call fees
- System maintenance
- Type of numbers called e.g. landline, mobile, international
Read on for more details on SIP trunk pricing factors.
What other SIP trunk costs should you consider?
In addition to the standard elements of SIP trunking, there are some other features and functions that you might wish to incorporate into your business’ phone system, which may incur extra charges. These include:
- Disaster recovery plans – are they included, or do you have to pay extra? These are usually available as part of the package, but the options (and therefore the costs) may vary depending on the complexity of your company’s requirements.
- Fraud services – these are either available as part of the package or as an add-on feature. You should have some level of fraud protection so that you’re covered against fraudulent calls made from your system or account, such as expensive international calls.
- Integrated communications – if you wish to use SIP trunking to unify your communications across your business (e.g. phone, messaging, email), this is likely to require extra expenditure.
On-premises vs hosted SIP trunking
You’re likely to come across these terms when reviewing SIP trunking options for your business. But what do they mean, and what are the cost implications?
|On-premises SIP trunking||Hosted SIP trunking
|Maintained on your site|
Kept with the server
Some hardware required
More expensive to set up
You own the system.
You are responsible for maintenance costs
Features available include messaging, call forwarding, voicemail etc.
|Maintained by an external provider via the cloud
Features available include messaging, call forwarding, voicemail etc.
Cheaper to set up
You rent the system
Charges can vary on an ongoing basis
Provider responsible for maintenance
While both options are available, most small businesses are likely to opt for hosted SIP trunking. It’s easier, cheaper and requires less space.
The examples above should give you an indication about SIP trunk costs. The next step would be to find out more specific information based on your business’ requirements.
Startups.co.uk can help with this too – simply complete the form at the top of the page to receive and compare quotes for telephone systems directly from suppliers.
SIP trunk pricing factors
While we can’t give you an exact figure of how much SIP trunking will cost your business, we suggest you think about the following questions when calculating SIP trunk costs.
- How much bandwidth do you have/need to run your phone system?
- How many users does the system need to cater for?
- How many locations will it be used in?
- Do you already have an IP PBX, or will you need to rent/buy a gateway to use SIP trunking?
- Are your business’ phone handsets compatible with IP and SIP?
- How much customer support and technical assistance will you require?
Note that SIP trunking relies on a strong internet connection, so if you need to upgrade your current connection, be sure to factor this into your costs. Read our page on the best broadband for small business for more inspiration.
Now, let’s take a closer look into the different factors that can affect SIP trunk pricing. Here, we examine some of the key factors you should consider when creating a budget for SIP trunking.
- Plan prices – you’ll need to decide between a metered (pay per minute) or channel-based (pay per channel) package.
- Set-up fees – sometimes this is offered for free, although it’s also possible that you’ll need to account for a one-off fee to get started.
- Geographic area – whether you need to make and receive calls to mobiles, as well as national or international phone numbers, will affect the price you pay.
- Scaling channels – if you need to add or remove channels, there’s likely to be a charge for this, so be sure to factor this in when working out your SIP trunk costs.
- Additional elements – special numbers (such as those used for emergency or freephone calls), and number porting (to transfer current numbers) are some examples of services that may be charged in addition to the standard plan price.
- Reporting – some providers may be able to offer you reporting analysis to examine how much bandwidth your system uses, granting you opportunities to make further gains. Check if this service is free, or if it incurs an additional charge.
- Hardware costs – if you do need to purchase hardware (such as new handsets/phones) to work with SIP trunking, consider the amount of time needed to pay this off versus the monthly charges you’ll need to account for too.
Potential SIP trunking cost savings benefits
There are a number of ways in which SIP trunking can benefit your business, including unifying communications and streamlining billing for phone systems. There are also a number of potential cost-saving benefits too, including:
- Call charges – international calls could be cheaper, and call charges are likely to be less expensive than traditional phone systems overall, due to only needing an internet connection and limited hardware (if any).
- Line rental – as SIP trunking is a virtual extension, there’s no need to pay for renting phone lines.
- Inter-office communication – if (or when) your business is spread across multiple sites, your team can call each other for free, providing all sites use the same SIP trunking provider.
- Minimal waste – due to the flexible nature of SIP trunking, you only pay for what you need, whether that’s based on how many trunks or minutes your business requires. This cuts costs, as well as the potential for spare lines or unused minutes, which can be the case with physical phone lines and systems.
- Space savings – operating a digital phone system (especially one hosted on the cloud) does away with the need for wires and storage, freeing up more work area for you and your team.
- Contract options – the flexibility of SIP trunking not only lies in the number of lines you can scale up or down, but also in how you’re billed for the service. For example, rolling contracts offer more flexibility than the standard contracts often associated with traditional phone systems.
- Location options – with SIP trunking, you can get a local number without having to be based in a specific area, saving you from spending money on extra office space or field representatives.
- Downtime reductions – many SIP trunking providers offer disaster recovery plans, so your phone systems can be up and running again quickly if the worst should happen, minimising the amount of time and resource wasted.
What are the next steps? Comparing SIP trunking quotes
By now, you’ve learned more about SIP trunk pricing and related costs. This includes how much it’s likely to cost you to set up SIP trunking, as well as insight into some of the other potential factors to consider when creating your budget.
Selecting a SIP trunking system that matches your business's requirements is important: this is not a ‘one size fits all' product. Finding the right one means taking the size, geography, and other specifics of your business into account.
This is why making contact with suppliers directly and comparing quotes is the best way forward when selecting a SIP trunking plan. Simply go to the top of the page and complete the form to get started.