The ubiquitous 1-800 number, businesses to this day are still grasping for them. Despite better access to international calling plans, the 1-800 number remains ever-popular and an important part in establishing a business as professional and accessible. A toll-free number means you as a business holder, foot the bill and that keeps customers happy. Figuring out how to get a 1-800 number for your business isn’t difficult; we’ve got all the details on how to get the best toll-free US number for your company right here.
Step 1: Check With Your Current Telephone Service Provider
It is possible that your current telephone service provider may be able to offer a reasonable price on a great American 1-800 number. If you have a long-standing relationship with your current telephone service provider, they may be able to offer a special discounted rate or an addition to your current landline. That being said, landline and telephone service providers can be more expensive than a VoIP service, so it’s always good to do a price check before.
Step 2: Explore the Growing VoIP Service Provider Market
If a telephone service provider doesn’t seem like the best fit for your 1-800 number needs, consider going with a VoIP service provider instead. A VoIP – voice-over-internet protocol – allows for individuals or businesses to obtain a number from anywhere in the world, by creating a ‘line’ through the internet. A VoIP service provider can be a well-known company you’ve already heard of, such as Skype or Vonage. They simply allow you to have a phone line over the internet, meaning you can get almost any number you’d like (so long as it’s not taken already). VoIP services can often be cheaper and more feature-filled than a regular phone service so might just be the best 1-800 number provider you’ve been looking for.
Step 3: Choose a VoIP Service for your Needs
There are several different great VoIP service providers out there these days, so take your time to shop around and see which one will fulfill the needs of your business. If you’re a small business, it might benefit you to have just one line that can be accessed via a couple of smartphones and one landline. On the other hand, if you’re a growing business, you might prefer multiple lines and a VoIP service that can expand as you grow. Many will also offer the options of receiving and making calls over a desktop, tablet, smartphone or landline, so there are many choices to consider. Also make sure to consider other features that you would like, such as call waiting, conference calling and video conferencing – as certain VoIP service providers will offer different features. Many of them provide customizable extras so you can get exactly the kind of service you need.
Step 4: Check to See What Numbers Are Available
Once you’ve picked the best VoIP service provider for you, talk to your customer service representative to find a 1-800 number that suits your business. You might be able to find a fun, memorable number like 1-800-DOG-WALK (1-800-364-9255) for a dog walking business. If you can’t find a number with a suitable word equivalent try and aim for numbers that have repeated digits and less variety as they’re more memorable. If you have the choice between two rhythmic numbers such as 455-6666 and 345-6767, say them both aloud and see which sticks in your mind more. Once you’ve decided on a number, you’re not going to want to change it, so it’s important to pick something easy for you, your staff and your clients to remember.
Step 5: Make Your Purchase and Advertise Your New 1-800 Number!
Okay, you’ve done it! You’ve selected a great 1-800 American number from a reputable and reliable cloud-based VoIP service and you’re ready to go. Switch all your business materials to include your new number and start accepting calls from very happy customers. Make sure you have the proper equipment needed for your office. Aside from the installation gear for some VoIP service providers, you may want to acquire headsets to make talking from the computer easier. Some VoIP service providers even sell their own equipment to ensure the best fitting devices for your needs. Once your office is geared up – you’re 1-800 American number is live and ready.
Note: Important Things About VoIP Service Providers
A few things to consider when purchasing a VoIP service provider:
- Some VoIP service providers have calling plans to and from different countries. If you’re running an international company it’s important to check which countries are included in their basic plans and which may be considered an extra.
- VoIP plans range in portability. Make sure you get one that suits the needs of your business. If you run everything remotely, there’s no need for a desktop service, on the other hand, a growing SMB or call center would need access points from several different desktops.
- Make sure your internet bandwidth is fast enough for your VoIP needs. You’ll want a fairly fast upload speed to accommodate for the different lines. While 500 Kbps is recommended for 1 line and could handle up to 5, you’ll want as much as 10 Mbps or 30 Mbps to handle a medium-sized business of 22-500 lines.