Monday, April 22, 2024
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The Role of Fax in B2B Transactions

B2B communication is reluctant to accept modern technologies since they must be established and guaranteed to be secure. For many tasks, fax integration is still used. Until now, businesses cannot refuse this technology, which is already more than 100 years old. Why is the fax so valuable? There are a number of reasons for this.

What is the Role of Fax in the B2B sector?

Traditional faxing remains prevalent in the B2B sector due to perceived advantages. Many companies find fax services convenient, reliable, and legally binding. Moreover, in certain circumstances, faxing can be more efficient than email.

Purchasing processes in B2B integration often involve complex approval, making faxing a quicker alternative to tasks such as receiving, printing, signing, scanning, and returning documents via email. Sectors like medical services, insurance, law firms, and public administrations frequently rely on faxes for their convenience and legal coverage.

Simultaneously, ongoing digital transformation in B2B focuses on increasing e-commerce through company websites. Web-based platforms enhance customer experiences and streamline user interaction. Additionally, the organization’s workforce benefits from accessing real-time online catalogues, which provide inventory information and delivery times.

If you work with orders, inventories, and delivery notes daily, you might still find yourself relying on faxes. They offer security, a sense of familiarity, and easy usability. However, there’s an alternative – fax by email. It provides the same security and features as traditional faxing, such as receipt acknowledgments, origin and destination numbers, transmission details, and even legal guarantees.

Switching to Internet fax brings affordability and effectiveness to the table. You can use the fax app to send and receive faxes from your smartphone. All you need to do is get the iOS version of the application and log in to it. You will have access to document management, quick sending, printing of necessary documents, and even protecting them with FaceID or password. Simply attach the necessary Word or PDF document, and it will be received by the recipient’s fax number.

Why is Fax Still Used for Document Exchange?

We still fax orders for two main reasons. Firstly, neither the supply side nor the buy side has its own proprietary piece of technology or software that mandates connectivity for business transactions. As an independent craft brewer selling to the LCBO, The Beer Store, or restaurants like Jack Astor’s, I cannot impose my system on them due to my size constraints.

Similarly, bars and restaurants lack sufficient leverage to compel craft brewers or food suppliers to adopt their technology. Consequently, a third party had to emerge to facilitate a middle-ground solution.

For years, both sides adhered to traditional business practices as no viable solution existed. On the other hand, fax is a common and understandable technology that does not need to be explained even to 70-year-old employees. Transitioning to other technologies can be extremely difficult due to the difficulty of adapting the entire staff.

What Benefits Does Fax Offer for B2B?

#1 You Don’t Need a Full Address

One of the coolest things about fax machine communication is how you can send a message without needing to know a lot of personal details. Unlike email, where you have to know every single letter of the address, with a fax machine, all you need is the name of the business you’re sending documents to. Finding this information is usually easy, which makes faxing a great marketing tool for your business. It’s also worth considering why you might choose to fax instead of using email.

#2 Fax Will Definitely Received

Fax machines remain popular due to their reliability. While it’s not uncommon for texts or phone calls to go unnoticed, faxes tend to have better odds. Interrupted signals frequently hinder communication attempts, and emails are often buried deep in spam folders. When you send a fax, you ensure that your message reaches the intended recipient. Still, faxing? You bet, especially if you want to guarantee the delivery of your message.

#3 Standards Interoperability

Since 1968, people have agreed upon international technical standards for fax transmissions. These standards continuously evolve to enhance the speed of delivery and improve image quality. All fax machines and capable systems adhere to both current and previous standards. As a result, even a fax machine from the 1980s can still communicate with one from 2023. In other words, these devices remain reliable, even after decades of use.

#4 It Provides Confirmation Pages

When you answer the question “Are fax machines obsolete?”, it’s important to consider documents like confirmation pages. Confirmation pages are definitely not obsolete, and neither is the fax machine. In fact, confirmation pages are the main reason why fax remains a popular method of business communication.

A confirmation page is a document that confirms that your message has been received by the recipient. This piece of evidence provides legal protection in certain situations and is a useful way to maintain a paper trail of your business interactions. The page displays important information such as the fax numbers of the sender and receiver, as well as the date and time of message transmission.

Conclusion

Still, many business transactions rely on faxes for B2B communications. Although some of the more modern communication solutions have their advantages, such as instant communication within a team, for many tasks a fax is indispensable. This is especially true if document security is a business priority. Moreover, the regulatory standards remain on the side of fax technology.

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