This is one of the most coveted benefits that come with internet faxing services – an online fax number.
Specifically, here you’ll learn how you can easily merge your virtual fax number to work with Gmail and if it’s compatible with Google Voice.
Let’s get started!
How to Combine Internet Fax with Gmail
We already covered how to send and receive faxes through email, now let’s go through how to set up your free Google fax number.
When you sign up with an online faxing service you also get to choose a dedicated fax number (also included with your free trial).
These virtual fax numbers can be a:
- vanity number
- toll free
- local number
- or you can transfer your existing fax number
Plus, many fax services let you choose local numbers in the United States, UK and several other locations worldwide.
Step 1: Choose Your Online Fax Service
There are handful of top rated fax services and the best companies will offer a free trial, which is a great way to see if this is the best option for your faxing needs.
This is what it looks like with RingCentral company when you sign up for their fax service:
The next page will ask for your basic information:
And last but not least your payment information:
Some of you may be wondering: But I thought it was free?
Although you do get to try it out for FREE, these days almost every service will ask for a credit/debit card.
Important Tip: Be sure to set a reminder on your phone or calendar on the day your trial end so you an decide if you need to cancel or just let the account continue.
With a traditional fax machine you would need a separate fax line, but that’s history with online fax.
Online fax services makes faxing easy to use by keeping everything online and accessible to you with cloud storage and powerful fax servers – anywhere you go.
Step 2: Customize Your Account to Send and Receive Faxes with Google
When you sign up you entered an email, by default this is the email that any incoming fax transmissions will be sent to.
But, you can further customize it to deliver incoming faxes to other emails as well as give others on your team access to sending a fax through their Gmail account.
Below are the options you have with RingCentral’s account settings:
Settings > Account Settings
This is where you’ll find the general information of your account.
The email you put here is by default where all incoming faxes, sent to your fax number, will be delivered to.
If you add your Gmail account here you will be able to send and receive faxes from this account.
Settings > Company Numbers
If you have other fax numbers associated to your company such as other toll-free or vanity numbers you can add them here so you can manage them all in one place.
You can also transfer your fax numbers over to this online fax service and modify your Caller ID settings.
Settings > Outbound Fax Settings
The first sections lets you customize a default cover page for your outgoing faxes.
The most important part however is the second section, which lets you add in additional emails that you would like to allow to send faxes with your service.
Once you’ve added in the emails you wish to authorize, all they have to do (in this case with RingCentral) is add @rcfax.com after the fax number they are sending the document to and your online faxing company will take care of the rest!
Settings > Notifications
Here you can choose if you want to be notified through email, text message or both when you receive a fax.
We suggest ticking the box that says “Include Attachment with Email” so you can view the fax document from your email inbox.
You can add additional phone numbers to be notified as well.
Under the “Fax Transmission Results” tab you can select who is notified of the status of your sent faxes. This is important to make sure that your fax documents are sent out successfully.
Google Fax Services We Recommend
We did our research.
We signed up, tested sending and receiving faxes from a computer and mobile device., we reviewed all the benefits that come with using an online fax account and narrowed it down to the top 2 options for 2020.
The services mentioned below provide an optimum experience and easy integration with Gmail and other Google products such as Google Drive.
Plans are available in different prices ranges and you can also try these services for FREE.
One of the leading companies, they strive to integrate as much possible with Gmail and currently offers numbers in the US, Canada and UK as well as local, toll-free or vanity options.
A complete service that works best for large businesses but also offers affordable plans for individuals or smaller companies.
Serving nearly have of the Fortune 500 companies, this provider offers numbers in over 40 countries, covering the most territory among Gmail fax services.
You can pick either a local or toll-free number and rest assured you are using on of the most reliable services.
Can You Use Online Fax Services with Google Voice?
Google Voice is a great tool that many business use and many users are asking: Can you fax using Google Voice?
There’s good and bad news.
Although you can’t use the Google Voice platform itself to fax, you can send and receive faxes with your Google Voice number by unlocking and transferring it to an internet fax service.
The main reason why Google Voice can’t be used for faxing is because it uses VoIP and online fax services use FoIP which is a different port.
That’s why transferring (also known as porting) your Google Voice number is the next best option.
HOWEVER, it’s important to know that after porting your number it cannot be used for calls anymore, it will be dedicated to faxing only.
If you don’t want to loose this than you can also have a separate fax number and have both a Google Voice number for calls and a virtual fax number for faxes.
How to Use Your Current Fax Number
If you already have a fax number, you can still keep your current number and transfer it over to an online fax service.
Keeping your current fax number is important because switching any type of company number means you have to update all your contacts and ultimately can cause a gap in communication.
You can avoid all this hassle by keep your current number and porting it online. You’ll be getting rid of the fax machine and land line and gaining an easy to use online account with your same number.
Transferring a number can take around 7 business days to be completed but providers will give you a temporary number of your choice until the porting process is completed.
Contact the provider you’re interested in beforehand about number porting so they can give you all the details about the process and any additional costs. It’s important to use a trustworthy provider that knows how to do this correctly so you can quickly enjoy your fax number online.
Is Google Fax Secure?
Unlike a fax machine, faxing through email doesn’t require a line service.
Aside from being password protected, your online account gives you access to secure cloud storage where you can keep documents safe, unlike having hundreds of paper documents around the office which can easily get lost or fall into the wrong hands.
Google fax offers more security compared to a fax machine.
Before delivering your incoming fax to the email address of your choice, the document is securely encrypted as it transfers from the fax machine it’s being sent from, to your email inbox.
How Does an Online Fax Number Work?
Your virtual fax number works just like any other number, the only difference is how the final product is delivered. If someone sends you a fax from a computer or a traditional fax machine, the steps are no different on their side.
Once a fax is sent to your number, the document is then transmitted to the online fax servers which automatically transform the signal into a digital format and then deliver the fax transmissions to your Gmail account.
Since this is automatic there are no extra steps you need to worry about and some services will even send you a text message to notify when you’ve received a new fax message which you can check on your computer or mobile device.
The majority of fax services offer local numbers from cities in the US but there are also services that offer international options, such as RingCentral, in countries like the UK and Canada. If you need a number in other countries then the best option is eFax, which offers local numbers from over 40 countries.
Another option you have instead of a local number is using a toll-free or vanity numbers. Which format you use depends on what type of business you have. Bottom line: you’ll be getting a powerful Google fax number that will increase productivity and lower your expenses.