Virtual phone numbers have changed the landscape of global communications and made it simpler to connect with clients worldwide. The flexibility and wide array of features of virtual numbers have captivated business owners. Many business owners are still challenged by the decision to either get a toll free number or a local number.
Are Toll Free or Local Numbers Are Better For Your Business?
In determining whether toll free numbers or local phone numbers are a better choice for your business, start with an examination of your brand. Is your business a local, small scale type of business or is it a larger business? You also have to examine where you see your brand image in the future. Perhaps you are starting small, but see the brand expanding across the nation or even across borders. The future of the brand is just as important to think about as the present.
After taking a careful look at where your brand is and where you see it going in the future, weigh out the pros and cons. Do this for both toll free numbers and local phone numbers to assess how each can benefit your company. Here is a look at the pros and cons of each number type to help you consider their benefits.
Pros of Using Toll Free Numbers
Americans use toll free numbers on a steady basis and in business communications, having a toll free number as a contact number can lend added professionalism to your business.
Other pros of using toll free numbers, particularly virtual toll free numbers, include:
- Toll free phone numbers are generally easier to remember. This translates to a higher inbound calling rate. This, in turn, results in a higher number of sales in relation to those calls.
- Toll free numbers also convey the image of large, established businesses. This is great for companies aiming to target wider audiences as they build their businesses.
- Portability is one of the most important “pros” of a toll free number. Choosing a toll free number means you can take it anywhere you go. For example, if you choose to relocate, you can do so without disruptions to service. This avoids any inconvenience to your customers.
Potential Cons of Using Toll Free Numbers
Though the pros outweigh the cons, it is important to get a full-scale look at the options. Here are some of the potential cons related to using toll free numbers:
The fact that it is free to call a toll free number may translate into more unnecessary calls. Some may call to ask irrelevant questions. Competitors may even call posing as customers to learn more about your sales and overall operating methods. Calls like these can waste time and productivity.
Pros of Using Local Numbers
Local numbers have their benefits as well. Pros of opting for local numbers for your business include:
- Some customers may prefer to work with a local business. Reaching out to customers from a local phone number may be an easier way to gain trust and establish relationships. This applies even if you are not physically present in the market.
- Including local phone numbers in your marketing materials may boost your efforts. A professional email used for a marketing campaign, for example, may be more appealing if it contains a local number.
- With virtual phone numbers, it is easy to get local phone numbers for the areas where you conduct most of your business.
Potential Con of Using Local Numbers
A potential con of using local phone numbers:
Customers generally prefer a company carry the costs of calls made to them. With local numbers, regular call rates apply and this could deter some customers from calling your company.
Building healthy relationships with customers is critical in growing any business. The best way to establish those relationships and maintain them is to provide superior customer service. Communication is at the core of every successful business.
Start with examining your current brand image and then also examining the future goals of your organization. With that vision and those goals clearly outlined, compare against the pros and cons or toll free numbers and local numbers. This process will help you determine which is better – toll free or local phone numbers.