Deciding on a Toll Free Number Provider

toll free number providers
You see them on websites, billboards, infomercials, business cards, and pretty much every other place businesses are promoted. If you read the title of this blog you know that we’re talking about toll free numbers!

Many companies rely on toll free numbers to handle sales and support calls but should you? If you find yourself asking this question, here’s some information that may help!

Why Do It?

  1. Sales
    Shoppers are much more likely to call into a toll free number than a long distance number. This means that adding a toll free number to your website is likely to attract a more calls from potential customers. Many small and medium size businesses that have implemented toll free number report that their sales increased dramatically after doing so.
  2. Professionalism
    Having a toll free number makes your business look more professional. Instead of listing a local number and giving off a “ma-and-pa shop” type impression, your company will look like a large professional business.
  3. Marketing
    Often times you can get a vanity toll free number that helps integrate with your marketing strategy- enhancing your brand image and creating something that sticks in consumers’ minds. For instance, say you are selling ink cartridges. Is it easier to remember 1-123-456-7890 or 1-800-INK-NOW1?*

Figure Out what’s Important to You:

There are a lot of toll free number providers out there, begging the question “which of these providers is right for me?”

Every company will have different needs, and there are a seemingly endless number of features to compare and contrast. To make things as easy as possible, these are some basic questions you should ask yourself that will help you decide which provider to use, and which plan to utilize:

  • Will I need forwarding to my cell phone?
  • Will I be calling out on the toll free number from my cell phone?
  • Do I need a company directory for various departments?
  • Do I need an alphabetized directory of all employees?
  • Do I want hold music for my customers?
  • Would I utilize “time-of-day routing”?
  • Do I need to be able to record calls?
  • Am I willing to pay more for an answering service?
  • Do I want my voicemails emailed to me?

Suggested Providers:

Our forum users have been commenting on this topic for some time. Here is their feedback on which providers are best for small to medium sized businesses:

“RingCentral works great for us.” –zevious

“We use GotVmail. They can forward to your cell and [have] lots of other features like an automated attendant and day/night mode.” –Rob1

“I have been using kall8 for a few years and am very happy. I can even have people fax to my toll free number. All voicemails and faxes are delivered via email.” – happytushies

“For a while, we used Angel.com. Now, we use AnswerConnect with live operators and 24 hour order taking capability.” –rabglus

“We decided to go with RingCentral and have been very happy with the service.” –rperissi

“We use gotvmail. All calls ring to my cell phone but it makes us look bigger – asks the customer to choose from several departments and announces the call to me before I hit ‘1’ to answer the call.” –g1tech

For more information on toll free number providers (as well as a number of other topics relevant to business owners) please visit our forums!

Kate Pierce eCommerce Specialist

*Please note, these phone numbers are not valid- that’s why we used them!

10 Responses to “Deciding on a Toll Free Number Provider”

  1. Hermes Birkin

    The correct approach is to look more real and more expensive than poor quality. Some of them deserve high prices because they need to stop a lot of time and effort. This really is an ideal opportunity for people to achieve real LV.

    Reply
  2. Steve Hingtgen

    A very important point missing in this article is that toll free numbers are often not portable. That means when it is time to switch service providers, you switch phone numbers. Check with the company you are working with to see if yours will be portable.

    Reply
  3. Small Business Phone

    Providers have their own features and plans. There are an online reviews of some providers. You can see from there the comparisons of feature and pricing plan of diffrent provider. This will help in deciding which provider to hire.

    Reply
  4. Kristina Axelsson

    Toll Free helps companies and individuals navigate the confusing world of premium toll free vanity numbers. Services allows you to search the available pool and look up premium vanity numbers, and then negotiates on your behalf to get dramatically better return on your investments in marketing and advertising through the use of toll free 800, 866 and 877 numbers. Vanity toll free numbers at reasonable prices.

    Reply
  5. Sweton

    great man…it is good to see guys like you…it is damn good…surf http://www.gethiredhelp.com/ to know about the telephone answering service.

    Reply
  6. Kate

    Jeanne,
    Thank you for your great insights!

    Reply
  7. Nick Gowdy

    You should also check out FreedomVoice:
    http://www.freedomvoice.com

    We’ve been in the business of providing toll free numbers to entreprenuers and small businesses since 1996.

    While we’ve consistently been at the head of feature development (Internet fax, voicemail transcription, etc.), what really sets us apart from providers like RingCentral or gotvmail is our commitment to quality customer service. When you call our support line, you get a highly-trained and caring staff located right here in the U.S. – definitely not something our competitors can say.

    Reply
  8. Clinton

    We have found it very powerful to use http://www.my1voice.com, professional recordings, easy self-management, follow-me abilities, voice mail/faxes delivered via email and efficient.

    Reply
  9. Jeanne

    Not only will a vanity 800 number bring more calls into a business because it is easier to remember than a string of 10 random digits, it also works well in radio ads that feature a jingle, which is quite common. And, vanity numbers are proven by numerous research studies to have higher consumer recall rates than numeric toll free or local numbers, AND even higher recall rates than URLs.

    In addition to asking the questions above to a toll-free number and service provider, you should also ask if you’ll have access to detailed call tracking reports so you can monitor incoming call volumes which will help you to manage your business.

    Vanity 800 numbers really are tremendous advertising tools that you should consider for your business’ advertising campaigns.

    Reply
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