There are still a fair number of businesses that use fax as their primary means of communication. The fax machine may be going the way of the dinosaur, but faxing is still going on, oddly enough. eFax is on top of these trends and that’s why they keep diversifying to keep up with the digital marketplace.
Before you ask where, let me say that in researching this article I discovered a number of government offices, medical professionals, financial and insurance industry people who rely on it. If you are still wondering about this, read this New York Times article published just a few weeks ago about faxing in Japan.
This post is for the small business owner who gets the occasional or regular fax stream.
In addition to small businesses, other industries are using their mobile devices a lot more to fax. Doctors, many of whom I consider small business owners, are using online options to fax in prescriptions or sign off on X-rays. The eFax app is very valuable for many industries and it works well with mobile devices, including the iPad Mini, iPhone 5, and, of course, Android-powered phones.
Sending an Internet Fax with eFax
eFax allows you to send and receive faxes around the world from Word without using a fax machine or all-in-one printer. It is one of the top online fax service for professionals, boasting 11 million users. This cloud-based app is easy to download and only requires an Internet connection to work.
As you can see in this dashboard image, it is pretty straightforward. Just below what you see in this screenshot for my trial account is a spot to add a cover page and also attach a file as the fax itself.
There are two pricing plans and both come with setup or activation fees. The eFax Plus 16.95 monthly (less on annual plan) and has a $10 setup fee. You receive 150 free pages per month, then it is $0.10 per page. The premium level is eFax Pro which is $19.95 monthly (again, less with annual purchase) and $19.95 setup. The Pro plan allows you to receive 200 pages per month, which lets you save $1.00 on those additional 50 pages.
What I Really Like
- You can use a fax machine from anywhere with any Internet accessible device, including your phone. For the small business owner on the go, it keeps you from being tied to your office while waiting for a fax.
- I like that they keep watching the market and adding features. I like that they are on top of mobile.
- It allows you to sign faxes and other documents digitally. Instead of printing, signing, and scanning, you can just drag and drop.
- When you need to send a file that will not attach to an email because it is too large, you can send it through eFax. They have a partnership with FuseMail. It is nice to the option of fax and large email attachments, especially when you are traveling.
What I’d Like to See
- I would like to see them offer a free trial. They used to have one and discontinued it.
- They should not charge fees for faxes that do not go through.
- A bigger value proposition between the Plus and Pro plans (currently only 50 extra pages).
Just because they seem to be increasingly rare, doesn’t mean you won’t need a fax machine or service from time to time.
As additional proof of the need, as I was finishing this article, my wife said, “Can we fax something from that multifunction inkjet?” When I asked why, she said that a bank confirmed that we had to fax in our document. I told her I had a temporary trial with eFax and we could use it for a test.
So there’s one more bit of proof that the fax machine has not totally gone extinct. When you do need a service, you’ll want to take a closer look at eFax and its useful service.