The eFax Option

How does one handle the occasional fax? The traditional model is to buy a standalone fax machine or a multi-function printer and either pay for a dedicated phone line or a line sharing device. The other option is eFax.

eFax services convert a fax into a digital file that can be received by eMail and vice versa. The typical eFax solution provides a dedicated fax phone number that will convert incoming faxes to email attachments that are automatically sent to your eMail address. Your outgoing faxes are sent as eMail attachments to the eFax service which sends them to physical fax numbers so your outgoing faxes are received just as if they had been sent by a standard fax machine.

Based on research done by FaxCompare, the “market standard” is for a service to provide a 30-day free trial, have no start up fee or hidden fees, and to offer 24/7 customer service and both send/receive capabilities. Expect to pay about $10 per month for 300 total pages (incoming & outgoing combined) with additional pages costing about $0.10 per page.

Here is a “SaaS” model that works for me. It is less expensive than owning dedicated hardware, is more efficient since it cuts down the number of steps needed to send a fax, should be more reliable, and is more secure (faxes go to specific eMail addresses rather than sit in the fax machine until someone picks them up). Plus it is the “greener” alternative. The best part is that FaxCompare has done most of the comparison shopping already and offers a set of apples-to-apples vendor reviews.