Using your phone number to make or accept business calls isn’t always a good idea. One of the many reasons is you make yourself susceptible to receiving business calls even at wee hours, which isn’t professional. Such calls should be directed to the business line unless it’s an emergency.
Having a business phone number helps establish your business’s professionalism. It enables you to create a positive first impression and build your customer’s trust in your business. That said, if you don’t have an official business phone number, it’s best to set up one.
It’s crucial to know that businesses are different and cater to the need of different niches. And so, when setting up your business phone number, choosing the one that meets your organizational requirements is critical.
To help you, this article presents a guide to setting up a business phone number. Read on!
Why You Need A Business Phone Number
Having a business phone number offers numerous advantages. Aside from this, it would help if you considered having a business phone number for many reasons. They include the following:
1. Enhanced Customer Experience
When you have a business phone number, it’s easier for you to create a better and more personalized experience for your clients and customers. If you have a business phone number with a feature like a virtual receptionist, it’s easier for the customer to find the person they’re looking for directions and make inquiries.
Furthermore, you’ll be more formal and professional when picking up the calls and introducing yourself, which differs from a personal call. Hence, you’ll avoid saying ‘hi’ or ‘hello,’ which can be a turn-off for a customer or client. Instead, you’ll introduce yourself with your name and ask the customer how you can help them. This can help build customer loyalty and brand reputation.
Furthermore, to maximize improving your customer relationship management, you can also consider using ringless voicemail, like Drop Cowboy Ringless Voicemail, in addition to having a business phone number. This will help you automate your ringless voicemail and SMS campaigns. This gives your team members more time to focus on answering the calls and queries of customers directly calling and messaging you.
2. Advanced Features To Enhance Call Management
Using business phone numbers gives you the benefit of accessing features you can’t have when using a personal line. For instance, transferring a personal call to another team member is challenging but is possible when using a business phone number.
The reason why it’s easy to do so using a business number is because they come with unique call management elements like company directories and extensions. These are essential for effectively handling the many calls to or from customers, clients, and business partners.
Moreover, business phone numbers have the following features:
1. Caller Identification to help you know who’s calling and whether to pick up the call
2. Instant notifications in case of a missed call
3. Voicemail transcription enables you to read voicemail messages instead of listening to them
The essence of having all these features is streamlining communication in the workplace and knowing the phone calls to prioritize.
Types Of Phone Numbers
There are different types of phone numbers, each with unique features. The type of phone number you choose for your business is also a key consideration. Here are the primary types of numbers you can use for your business:
1. Local Phone Number
This type of number is to establish your business’s local presence. Ideally, it’s related or tied to a specific area or location to make it easier for stakeholders not part of your organization to know where your business is.
Even though having a local number establishes your location, you can also obtain local numbers with a different code than where you run your business. The benefit of this is it helps you have a dominant presence in your state, country, or region.
2. Vanity Numbers
This custom-tailored or personalized number allows you to add relevant phrases or words. An example of such a number is 2-700-BAGS. The essence of using a vanity number is to make name recognition easy for people who don’t know your business.
Moreover, such a number enhances memory. For example, if a client wants to order something yet needs to remember how they saved your business number, they can search for the service, like delivery, and the number will pop up on their screen. After that, they can call you.
Ideally, if anyone sees or hears your business vanity number, they don’t have to dig deeper to find exactly what your business offers. They will instantly know your services and call you if they need them.
One main drawback with a vanity number is that many businesses offer similar services; hence, most numbers with phrases or words identical to a product you’re selling have been taken. Thus, you need to be creative with your chosen phrase or words to get an appropriate vanity number for your business. The chances of you getting a free vanity number are meager. Thus, depending on your provider’s terms, you must pay a standard monthly amount.
3. Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) Number
You can get a VoIP phone number when you sign up for a business VoIP service. This enables you to make and receive calls over the internet as long as you have stable connectivity. Of all the phone numbers you’ll set up, you’ve spent the most per month accessing your provider’s services when you choose a VoIP phone number.
The beautiful thing, however, is that it has upgraded features courtesy of up-to-date technology; hence it’s more scalable. Moreover, you won’t incur any cost when connecting the number to your line because that happens directly through the internet.
4. Toll-Free Numbers
These numbers are commonly known for starting with a prefix between 800 and 899. These numbers are unique compared to the rest because they’re free to dial. They aren’t related to any locality or area.
Your phone service provider can help you set up a toll-free number at an affordable rate. Moreover, the rate they charge is affordable, approximately USD$ 10, so you won’t strain to pay monthly. Since they aren’t tied to a particular area or locality, anyone from your nation can seamlessly contact your business.
How To Set Up Your Business Phone Number
Technological development and advancements have made setting up a business phone number easier. If you’re unsure where to start, here’s a guide on setting up your business phone number:
1. Select A Business Phone Number App
With technological advancements, businesses nowadays use business phone number apps to set up their business phone number. A business phone number app is software that enables you to choose the type of business number you prefer according to your business needs. Virtual phone numbers, offered through business phone number apps, allow businesses to choose the type of number that suits their needs and use it across multiple devices. This enables efficient call management, call forwarding, voicemail recording, and other features, enhancing business communication capabilities.
For example, a Sydney-based business can use an Australian virtual phone number to establish a local presence in different regions of Australia, allowing customers from various areas to reach the company efficiently. Businesses can access high-quality services and utilize the app to efficiently manage calls and messages across multiple devices by selecting a reputable business phone number provider.
When choosing the business phone number provider, you must ensure they’re reputable and renowned for providing high-quality services. You can check out various providers and compare rates. You can also read online reviews about their services.
Once you’ve chosen a provider, you can download the app on your phone or computer. This is where you will select and set up your business phone number. This is also what your team will use to streamline calls and text processes.
2. Select A Phone Number
Once you’ve downloaded your preferred number provider app, you can select the desired phone number. When choosing the number, you need to take your time.
The reason is some apps give you the option of choosing between a local, vanity, or toll-free one. If you want to create more brand awareness, you can go for the vanity option, which markets your services.
A local number will be ideal if you want to have as many customers as possible from your locality. That said, first, you need to know your goals and choose your desired type of number.
Depending on your provider, you might be paying monthly charges for the following services:
2. Unlimited call minutes
3. Call recording
4. Custom greetings
5. Call forwarding
6. Free trial
It’s essential to go for a provider whose services best suit your needs to improve your operations and give your customers the best experience.
3. Create A Personalized Greeting
Once you’ve downloaded the app, followed all signing up instructions, and chosen your preferred number, the next step is creating a greeting. Once you’ve set the custom greeting, it’ll be the first thing your customers hear when they call or dial your business number.
An example of a default greeting you can record is, ‘Thank you for contacting ABC Company. For inquiries, press 1.’ The greeting doesn’t have to be necessarily this way. You can customize it to meet your business needs.
If you don’t want to record yourself, you can use software that can help narrate your greeting professionally. Try and ensure the greeting matches your business style to avoid taking away its authenticity and originality.
To upload the audio, you need to follow the app’s instructions and choose the option that suits you best, for example, recording via phone or computer. Try as much as possible to ensure the recording is in mp3 format and then upload it. As long as the voice on the audio is appealing and conveys an appropriate message, you can use it as a custom greeting.
4. Do Not Forget The Extensions
Most business phone number apps have a provision for extensions. This feature allows you to forward the caller to the individual in the correct organizational department. For instance, your extensions can include: ‘To open a new account, press one; for inquiries about your loans, press 2’, and the list continues.
If you’re the one on the line, you can redirect the call to the professional handling the customer’s grievances. Extensions are super effective if you’re operating a big company. So, if you have a customer greeting plus extensions, it’ll help you handle many customers in a day as compared to them calling one person.
You may have a small business set up; hence you’re handling most things independently. In this case, you don’t need extensions or custom greetings. You can deal with your customers directly and address their needs.
5. Set Your Voicemail Message
Just like you’ve set your greeting, you can set up a default voicemail message in case the caller calls and you miss their call. An example is, ‘Thank you For Contacting ABC Company. You’ll get a call as soon as the next agent is available.’ Alternatively, you can also tell them to leave a message.
Since this is your business, it’s up to you to decide what your away default message will be like. The only thing you have to do is ensure it’s in line with your business services. Moreover, note that you can change the voicemail message at any time and modify it to a better one.
6. Have An Appropriate On Hold Music
Sometimes you may get a call while on another call; hence, you have to put the other caller on hold. In this case, it’s essential that you have soothing on-hold music that’ll motivate the caller to wait.
If you don’t want it to be literal music, you can record a video explaining your company’s services with a relaxing instrumental background and use it as the on-hold music. This will be a chance to advertise your business.
7. Test The New Phone Number
After following the above steps, you can send and receive calls. In this regard, you’d want to confirm whether you’ve followed the steps correctly by testing the phone number. Confirm that the greeting, extensions, and voice mail messages are well put.
You can do all this by using your number to call the business one. You can take a friend along to make things easier. They’ll be of great help in experimenting with the hold music part. Moreover, they’ll give you feedback. If they point out any mistakes, don’t hesitate to correct them.
Having a business phone number for your business is essential. This helps streamline your operations and improves your professionalism. This also makes making inquiries easier for your customers, giving them a better experience. Therefore, if you’re still using your personal number for your business, it’s time to make an update and set up your business phone number.