Having a business phone number is great. It helps to give your business an official tone by having a line dedicated to your business transactions. And, as a business owner, whether big or small, managing your costs and finances is key to making a profit at the end of the day.
To do this, cutting costs where you can is important, and getting a business phone number that can be effective and free is a great way to keep your business organized while saving money on phone expenses.
You can learn more about different types of business phone numbers and the benefits below or skip ahead to services that offer free business phone numbers.
Types of Business Phone Numbers
Business phone numbers are often a way for people to get in touch with your business or for you to reach your clients professionally.
There are a variety of numbers that offer different functionalities and advantages. This is why when picking a business phone number; it is best to consider factors like how it aids your brand, tracks campaign performance and (or) how accessibility is improved.
Below are a few types of business phone numbers and what they can bring to the table when it comes to improving both the outlook and efficiency of your business:
1. Local Numbers: These types of numbers are basically for people who operate within a region. The local number helps to present a credible look to potential customers; hence, the business using them tends to have higher call volumes and answer rates.
2. International Numbers: As the name connotes, these are for people with a much wider range than those with or who need local numbers. International Numbers help you grow your business outside the shores of your region to the rest of the world.
3. Toll-Free Numbers: Toll-Free numbers are the way to go when you want to improve accessibility to your business. They help to channel a sense of size and importance across to your customers as they are a great way for long-distance callers to reach you.
4. Vanity Numbers: Vanity Numbers help leave a great impression of your business on your customers or potential customers. They are those alpha-numeric telephone numbers which contain words that can help businesses better showcase their brand, e.g., 1-800-FREE
5. DID Numbers: DID Number or Direct-Inward-Dialing numbers are often given to important business customers to reach specific people without rerouting. They are usually reserved for loyal customers and can be linked to specific persons or departments in your business. This eliminates the need to go through a receptionist or customer care agent when trying to reach someone.
Benefits of Getting a Business Phone Number
There are numerous benefits to getting a business phone number. As a business owner, whether large or small scale, it is necessary to be able to keep up in this age of online business communications. The following are some benefits of getting a business phone number:
Your Personal Number is Kept Private: Having your business line be your personal phone number can spell trouble for your business and stress for you.
Customers calling you at odd hours or when you're having fun with your family is the last thing you want, which can influence how you respond to them. All this stress and discomfort can be avoided by getting a business phone number; with that, you can enjoy your privacy at no cost to your business.
A Professional Tone is Conveyed: A business phone number conveys a sense of professionalism and seriousness to prospective customers. This adds credibility to your business, which can't be gotten from having a personal phone number as your business line.
In the business world, where first impressions are everything, how your business is seen is very important, and a business phone number can help build a great first impression.
Designated Work Hours: Having a business phone number available only during certain hours of the day can ease your stress. With a business phone number, you get to decide what hours of the day you want to work and when you are unavailable, callers get a voicemail informing them when you'll be available to attend to them.
Services that Offer Free Business Phone Numbers
One of the ways to reduce company costs is to get a free business phone number. You don't have to spend a considerable profit on expensive cellphone bills. The following are five of the best services that offer free business phone numbers:
- Google Voice
- Freedom Pop
1. Google Voice
Being the most popular on this list, Google Voice offers its services to businesses and self-employed workers who rely heavily on other Google Workplace apps. Since having a Gmail account already qualifies you for a Google Voice Business Phone Number, it is incredibly easy to set up. And its free phone number works with virtually any device, be it a mobile phone, web browser, or even a landline.
With Google Voice, you can even get a transcript of incoming voicemails. Google Voice offers a Local Business Phone Number that can make calls to anywhere in the world, with the added function of being able to select any U.S phone number.
Google Voice has various management features that can help improve your business efficiency. These features include:
- Transcription of Voice Messages: Voicemail transcription is a powerful feature that Google Voice provides through its speech recognition technology. This allows the business owner to look through voice messages instead of listening to them.
- Spam Blocking: Similar to how spam blocking works in Gmail, Google Voice also offers the function to block unwanted calls and messages, designating them as spam.
- Reporting of Activities and Usage: Here is where the Voice Audit Log is most useful, as it stores events' names, sources, and destinations. This helps track your real-time calls and utilize the data to push your business forward.
This Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) service provider is well known for its flexible configurability. This enables business owners to be able to choose the VoIP service that they prefer. They can easily customize the most cost-effective solutions for their business calling needs.
In addition to that, CallCentric makes it easy to switch between plans. And if you are willing to spend a little money on their premium plan, the transition to that comes incredibly easy. CallCentric does have one drawback, though, only calls to other CallCentric users are free, and calls to other traditional numbers incur a small charge. They still offer great service and are perfect for businesses that don't have to attend to calls daily.
CallCentric comes with a ton of great features, of which the best of them are:
- Call Rejection for Anonymous Numbers: This means that whenever an unknown number calls you, your phone won't ring, and the call will be automatically rejected. In addition, you can configure error messages for unknown numbers or redirect the calls to the company voicemail.
- Call Treatments: With this feature, you can set parameters for handling calls. You decide how your calls will be handled by redirecting unknown numbers to voicemail to forwarding callers to another line.
- Four Way Calls: This makes conference calling easy, as you can set up calls with up to three other numbers by simply pushing down the flash or holding a button on your phone.
3. Freedom Pop
This business phone number app stands out from the rest with its Freemium plan feature. This gives business owners access to 200 minutes worth of free calls, 500 text messages, the first 30 days of unlimited calling and 500Mb data, and free iMessages and rich communication services (RCS) over WiFi.
This is an offer no other business phone number provider offers on this list, although most of these features are tied to the availability of a WiFi connection. Freedom Pop business users get a custom configuration for their business needs, which comes with an in-app account manager for detailed and dedicated reporting.
Although Freedom Pop works like a cellular provider, some great features still make getting a Business Phone Number from them worth it. Some of these are:
- Options for Internet Service: Through Freedom Pop's top-up function, it is easy to purchase data, or if you want, you can pay additional charges for your data usage.
- Cellular Service Provision: Freedom Pop working like a cellular provider is advantageous as it provides all the pros of a cellular network without any expensive charges. Business owners are also given the freedom to tailor their plans according to their business needs.
- WiFi Calling: With this feature, you can save costs using a wireless internet connection to make calls and send texts.
This Business Phone Provider is perfect for all businesses regardless of size, as it offers many features that can fit into every company's needs. If you are a business owner based in the U.S or Canada, then you are eligible to choose between a Local Business Number and a Toll-Free Number, as this comes with no hassle at all.
Calls can easily be configured and redirected to any number you want, although this requires an existing phone service. eVoice's mobile app also adds to its accessibility and gives you access to a second number on the go.
eVoice features help businesses run comfortably without stress while maintaining a maximum cost reduction. Some of the features which eVoice provides are:
- Auto Attendant: This feature enables you to pre-record a greeting for callers. This will help ease them into calls and can even boost customer engagement.
- Voicemail-to-Email: This automatically converts and sends your voicemails to your emails so you can attend to them some other time.
- Advanced Call Routing: This feature helps to determine where calls should be redirected to.
This app turns any device into a phone and gives you access to a U.S phone number. You also can call any number anywhere in the world, even if the person you're calling doesn't have the app. It is a simple but basic app that does what you need.
Steps to Take When Getting a Business Phone Number
Setting up a business phone number doesn't require many expenses, as most things need the basics that your business already has.
1. Internet Access: This should not be a problem, although sometimes the effectiveness of a Business Number provider can vary based on your internet service. This can leave your business prone to connectivity issues and power outages. This is why a good computer or mobile phone with a good internet network is the foundation to consider when getting a business number.
2. Existing Phone Service: Even with good internet service, you still have to have your phone or desk phone to use the free business number. And depending on how you want to run your business, you could have quite a number of phones set up to receive and reroute calls through.
3. Extra Equipment for VoIP: Voice-over Internet Protocol providers sometimes require additional equipment for their business numbers to work. This could be either a telephone adapter or WiFi and a computer. This is to ensure that your calls reach their destination through the internet.
A business phone number is one way to legitimize your business, giving it an aura of authenticity and making it look more professional. It also helps you separate your work from your personal life.
Many business phone number providers offer various plans at different prices that could be as expensive as the cell charges you're trying to avoid. Still, with these five free business phone number providers, the only cost on your mind is your internet and cell/landline service.
Some of these free providers offer premium plans that give access to more features, but the providers listed above are some of the best that provide amazing services at no cost at all.