Getting a phone number on your small business appears like a comparatively easy process until you’re actually doing it.
Selecting a business phone provider involves more considerations than most individuals realize, and switching between providers comes with a complete other set of complications.
Save the headaches and keep reading this guide, backed by over a decade’s experience in small business management and growth.
Whether you’re starting a small business for the primary time or seeking to upgrade your current business phone plan, this guide incorporates all of the essential details you must get a business phone number.
Without further ado, let’s get into it!
What Is a Business Phone Number?
A business phone number is a line of communication dedicated exclusively to your organization. Having a phone number specifically for your online business lets you keep your personal life separate and your online business organized.
A business phone number will mean you can receive and make calls from customers, partners, investors, and other contacts, all with an added level of professionalism. It suggests that your online business is here to remain.
Moreover, a business number can assist you to to improve customer support and track the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns by keeping all company-related interactions in a single place. Essentially, it’s a tool for connecting along with your audience more effectively.
Varieties of Business Phone Numbers
There are multiple varieties of business numbers, they usually’re not particularly interchangeable. Before you acquire your personal business number, make sure that you recognize which might best serve your purposes.
Typically, businesses that need to serve a local or regional community go for local numbers. These numbers normally include a 10-digit dialing code, and the world code (or “prefix”) matches the region of the business.
They’re also only capable of make calls to the local area. As such, local business owners can avoid expensive calling fees and infrequently make the most of inexpensive local rates.
Local phone numbers are most helpful for small business owners seeking to maintain local visibility, as customers will have the ability to recognize the world code related to your online business.
Toll-free numbers are the hottest business phone number option for larger businesses, as anyone nationwide can contact them without added calling fees. They arrive with a 10-digit dialing code but no area code.
These numbers are likely to have a more skilled feel than local numbers and infrequently suggest a big company size. Nonetheless, since many toll-free numbers are shared amongst different corporations, it may possibly be difficult to face out from the gang.
If you should make a great impression on potential customers or partners, go for an exclusive toll-free number reasonably than a shared one.
Vanity numbers are a fun spin on traditional business numbers. They’re custom phone numbers that spell out an organization name, business slogan, or other phrase. They arrive with each a 10-digit dialing code and an area code.
These numbers might be extremely catchy and help potential customers remember your brand quickly and simply. Not to say, they look great on printed promoting and make your online business look more skilled and established.
Vanity numbers are an awesome solution to stand out from the competition and make your small business appear larger than it’s. But, due to extra cost related to them, they’re not necessarily suitable for all businesses.
VoIP (Voice over Web Protocol) numbers are virtual phone lines that use high-speed web networks to make and receive calls. They arrive with a 10-digit dialing code but no area code.
These numbers are perfect for businesses that don’t need to be tied down by a physical location, as they’ll easily be transferred from one place to a different at any time. VoIP numbers also are likely to be more cost-effective than other business number options and offer many beneficial features, comparable to call routing and voicemail management.
VoIP numbers are definitely my advice for startups or small businesses searching for cost-effective communication solutions.
What’s the Best Number to Use For Your Business?
The perfect number to make use of for your online business ultimately depends upon the nature of your organization, your branding, and your budget. Selecting the appropriate kind might be an awesome task.
Luckily, many resources are dedicated to helping you discover the appropriate business phone number for you.
Why Does Your Business Need a Phone Number?
On account of the complications of a business phone, you might be wondering how needed they really are. Business phone numbers have many advantages, but the next three customer-support-related reasons ought to be enough to persuade you.
A business phone number enables you to access your line from multiple devices, including landlines, mobile phones, and computers. This implies you could easily answer calls from customers and potential leads irrespective of where you might be.
More importantly, though, your line can maintain multiple phone calls concurrently. This is a wonderful feature for customer support, as your clients won’t must wait as long to be helped.
When a customer is already consistent with an operator of your multi-line device and one other caller attempts to achieve you, they might be transferred to a different agent as an alternative of receiving a busy signal. This has the potential to noticeably improve your organization’s repute. By offering efficient customer support, you tell your customers you care about their time.
Additional Communication Channels
A business phone number also adds extra communication channels to your customer support arsenal.
The choice of text messages or emails allows your customers to contact you in additional convenient and efficient ways than traditional phone calls. Allowing multiple communication channels can prevent each much time.
Modern businesses need to offer multiple methods of communication in order that their customers can reach out in whatever way they’re most comfortable with.
Advanced Features For Higher Call Management
Finally, a business phone number can provide you with access to advanced features that enable efficient call management.
These tools are handy for small businesses with limited staff, as they’ll assist you to higher manage your customer support and make sure that that calls are being answered in a timely manner.
Features comparable to call forwarding and automatic voicemail greetings can greatly improve the shopper experience. Plus, having the flexibility to trace caller history and gain insight into incoming and outgoing calls gives you useful information about where your customers are coming from and the way best to serve them.
Features to Search for in a Business Phone Provider
As you seek for the proper business phone provider, listed below are some amazing features that ought to be in your must-have list.
A mobile app is a wonderful source of convenience for businesses that need to administer their lines on the go. It should allow you to easily access your online business account, check voicemails and missed calls, and forward messages.
Look out for a mobile app that lets you easily transfer calls between devices so customers don’t must wait too long for a solution. A very good mobile app can really take the effort out of managing customer support out of your phone or tablet! It’ll also prevent the difficulty of letting missed calls and inquiries stack up.
For convenience and efficiency, search for a business phone provider offering call forwarding. This feature enables you to transfer calls between landlines and mobile devices, ensuring your customers can at all times reach the appropriate person or department quickly. That way, for those who’re on the go, you possibly can quickly reroute the decision to the correct department.
Some providers also offer advanced options comparable to voicemail-to-text conversion and automatic message responses. These features can save time and ensure every customer gets the eye they deserve, with little inconvenience to you.
Some of the vital features to search for in a business phone provider is voicemail transcription. This nifty tool robotically turns voice messages into text, so you possibly can read and respond even for those who can’t answer the phone.
It’s a wonderful time-saver and helps be certain that no inquiry slips through the cracks. Plus, it gives customers a greater response experience since they won’t must wait too long for a reply.
A call recording feature will record all incoming and outgoing calls. Having records of your online business interactions is great for insurance and keeping track of easily-forgettable details. With a call recording feature, you’ll at all times have evidence of business-related calls.
It’s a vital tool that might help protect your online business from liability issues. It also offers useful insights into customer conversations so you possibly can proceed improving the service experience.
Call parking is a feature that makes transferring calls between multiple users easier. It’s an awesome solution to manage incoming customer calls when you’ve limited staff or don’t at all times know who should handle them.
By assigning a “parked” call to a different user, you possibly can keep the shopper and team member comfortable with quick, efficient assistance — no matter who answers the road first. With this useful tool in your arsenal, no more missed calls.
Analytics is the last feature to look out for in a business phone provider. We’ve discussed customer support plenty, but analytics can assist you to with the marketing aspect of running a business.
Analytics features can provide useful insight into customer behavior, providing you with the information needed to make informed decisions about higher serving your customers.
A few of this information includes incoming and outgoing calls, call duration, caller location, popular times of day for calls, and more. With the assistance of analytics, yow will discover areas where you wish improvement and take all of the needed steps to make sure customer satisfaction.
How Do You Setup a Latest Business Phone Number?
Now that you recognize what to search for in a business phone provider, here’s learn how to begin actually getting an account arrange with one.
Step 1: Sign Up for a Business Phone Service
Obviously, step one in organising a recent business phone number is finding a provider. Search for one that provides all of the features you wish, comparable to voicemail transcription, call forwarding, and call recording.
When you’ve found your provider, you possibly can enroll for his or her services. The sign-up will normally be accessible via their website.
Step 2: Select a Business Phone Number
Next up is purchasing your actual business phone number. Most providers have an intensive choice of area codes and toll-free numbers available, so yow will discover one that matches your needs perfectly.
Take into accout all of the different sorts of business phone numbers available. Not all providers offer each type, so search for a provider with the phone line you desire for your online business.
Step 3: Setup Phone Extensions
When you’ve purchased a number, it’s time to start organising your phone extensions. This is very important for creating an organized system of routing calls and can be certain that each customer inquiry gets the eye they deserve at minimal inconvenience to you.
Your enterprise phone provider will likely have an easy-to-use tool for managing these extensions. On this tool, you possibly can add as many lines as needed and divide them into departments or team members so customers can quickly connect with the appropriate person.
You ought to be ready to start out directing calls to your online business phone line from there! Once you’ve your line up and running, you’ll probably must rewire how your online business is presented on Google search results and maps. Local search engine marketing is an awesome solution to go about this hefty process — take a look at our guide to local search engine marketing for more details.
Best Business Phone Services
Listed below are a few of my favorite and most-trusted business phone services to make use of as a provider.
What It Is
Phone.com is a preferred small-business solution that lets you connect your online business line to any of your devices. This connectivity makes for total convenience and ease of use once your line is about up.
Why We Picked It
- 24/7 customer support
- Small-business oriented
- Serves a wide range of industries
- Offers local and vanity toll-free numbers
Phone.com offers inexpensive pricing, starting at $11.99/mo for a phone line with an app, multiple standard voice features, 500 pooled minutes, and 1,000 text segments.
You’ll gain access to unlimited minutes and texts for under $6/mo more at $15.99/mo.
Finally, opt for his or her Pro plan at $23.99/mo for tools like voicemail transcription and analytics.
What It Is
Ring Central is a cross-industry cloud phone solution that works inside a single app. It’s straightforward to make use of and convenient to have all of your online business conversations, from clients to partners, in a single single location. Ring Central is thought for advanced analytics tools and stellar uptime.
This is a wonderful option for small businesses with many communication channels, as it can assist you to stay organized and skilled.
Why We Picked It
- 99.99% uptime
- Tons of integrations
- Flexible pricing
- Small-business oriented solutions
Ring Central’s price plans start at $19.99/mo with capabilities for as much as 20 users, unlimited calls inside Canada and the US, document sharing, voice-to-text, and enhanced business SMS.
For unlimited users, numbers in 100+ countries, 100+ people video conferencing, service reports, and office suite integrations, opt for his or her Standard plan at $27.99/mo.
Ring Central offers two more plans, Premium and Ultimate, for $34.99 and $49.99/mo, respectively. These plans provide advanced features that best serve medium-to-enterprise-sized corporations reasonably than small businesses.
What It Is
Grasshopper offers business phone numbers without the extra costs of various devices, allowing you to maintain your personal and business lines completely separate. In addition they enable professional-driven features like custom greetings. Their mobile and desktop apps also make it easy to reply calls from anywhere.
Why We Picked It
- Skilled features
- Set automated greetings
- Selection between toll-free numbers, vanity numbers, and native numbers
- Mobile and desktop apps
Go for Grasshopper’s solo plan at $28/mo for one phone number with three extensions and unlimited users. This plan should cover almost the whole lot a small business should need, but for multiple phone numbers, you possibly can upgrade to the Partner plan at $46/mo.
What It Is
8×8 is a phone service provider that also offers self-service capabilities via AI. They leverage cloud PBX to make your online business phone simpler and efficient for you, your customers, and your employees. In addition they offer integrations with Microsoft Teams and most CRMs, making it easy to maintain your online business details in a single place.
Why We Picked It
- Powerful analytics
- Advanced technological solutions
- Extra-secure data centers
- Mobile and desktop app
- AI attendant
- Amazing value
8×8 offers two price plans: X2 for $24/mo and X4 for $44/mo. The primary plan comes with unlimited users, unlimited calls to 14 countries, 500-participant video/audio conferences, SMS team chat, Microsoft integration, host desking, voicemail transcription, and far more. This plan offers the whole lot a small business may need.
What It Is
Nextiva is an all-in-one solution for managing customer conversations and interactions. This VoIP service is entirely cloud-based, with 99.99% uptime and 24/7 customer support. It also offers video and chat functionality.
Why We Picked It
- Great uptime and customer support
- Unlimited calls, faxes, and texts
- Virtual voicemail and auto attendant
- Local and toll-free options
- Easy team collaboration
Nextiva’s pricing solutions are hard to beat. For less than $20.96/mo, you’ll get unlimited calling throughout the US and Canada, a free local and toll-free number, access to their mobile app, video meeting capability, and team collaboration tools.
The corporate also offers an Enterprise plan for $28.46/mo with call recording, voice analytics, and a CRM.
What It Is
Vonage offers all varieties of business connection channels to assist you to streamline your communications. Their phone solutions are spectacular, with easy virtual number provisioning and a comprehensive number selection. This is a wonderful option if you must add a phone number to your applications.
Why We Picked It
- App connectivity
- Support in 85 countries
- Quarantined numbers to remove the danger of cross-talk
- A2P messaging
Vonage’s pricing system requires you to pay for under what you employ. Their rates are different for virtual and toll-free numbers and rely upon the phone service carrier. Calls start at $0.0138/minute.
Best Free Business Phone Services
When you’re not seeking to spend money on a phone service provider, here’s a further free service.
Google Voice has a business option that matches corporations of any size. This organizational tool lets you consolidate business communications within the Google Workspace Admin console. You’ll also gain access to handy tools like Google AI, which blocks spam calls and transcribes voicemails — without spending a dime.
A very good business phone number is essential for any organization that takes customer support seriously. Moreover, business phone services can assist you to consolidate business connections and maintain a more organized workflow.
With the appropriate provider and features, you possibly can create a great experience on your customers while keeping control over costs and ensuring your team stays contactable in any respect times. Don’t let yourself be caught out with a subpar phone service — make sure that you take a look at all of the features available before making your decision.
Kudos to you for doing all your research. I hope this text gave you a solid idea of the next step as you are trying to streamline your online business communications.
Completely happy hunting! If you’ve any comments or inquiries, please leave us a comment.