As any growing business knows, establishing good communication with its customers and clients can be a major determining factor in its long-term viability. Whether it is to coordinate operations, close sales, or answer the fluctuating volume of customer calls on a timely basis, being accessible over the phone is mandatory for success. How can businesses do this? The answer is call forwarding, a cost-effective service to improve your business’ communications. Let’s look at what call forwarding is, its benefits, how it works, and some examples of how companies can use this service.
What is Call Forwarding and Why Does Your Business Need it?
Simply put, call forwarding or routing allows you to route incoming calls to a destination phone number of your choosing. This can be an alternate phone number in the same location (i.e. landline or smartphone) or it may be forwarded to another number anywhere in the world through international call forwarding. How call forwarding works is really easy to understand when you grasp the concept of virtual numbers and how they operate. For those doing business across different countries, or traveling internationally for business, virtual numbers and call routing are the best and most affordable ways to communicate with associates and clientele.
How Does Call Forwarding Work?
Forwarding business calls is a feature offered by phone service providers around the world. When you purchase a virtual local or toll free number, you can receive calls from your customers in any location. You simply need to decide what location or destination number you would like the calls to route to. This destination number can be located anywhere in the world. Popular destinations include landlines, call centers, VoIP devices, softphones, and mobile phones.
After your virtual number is activated, incoming calls to that phone number are automatically redirected to the destination number of your choice. You can further adjust the forwarding settings to route to different locations or numbers, as needed, through your account’s Control Panel.
By forwarding calls, you can essentially make your business accessible around the clock, 24/7. We explain how exactly businesses can use forwarding below.
How to Use Call Forwarding?
When you subscribe to a virtual call forwarding service, you can choose from various local and toll free numbers for different countries. You can then use these numbers to manage incoming calls from customers in target areas. Common uses of this service include offering global customer support and connecting remote or international teams.
Businesses can use call forwarding to route calls effectively from one location to the next. The purpose of forwarding this way is to ensure that customer calls are not missed and every caller gets a chance to connect with the business.
As such, your business can forward incoming calls to multiple locations and numbers. Furthermore, you can route calls to multiple destinations simultaneously or to different locations in a list, one after the other.
You can even route calls based on the purpose of the call. For example, you can set up location-based routing where calls route to a specific location based on the location of the caller. Or, you can set up time-based routing where calls route to different locations based on the time of the incoming call. These rules can be adjusted and set-up quickly through our Control Panel.
By setting up call forwarding in these different ways, your business ensures that no customer call goes unanswered and that your customers can reach you, no matter the time or location.
Example of Forwarding Business Calls to Grow Locally and Internationally
The best way to understand what call forwarding is and how it works is through an example:
Suppose you have decided to expand your East Coast-based business to West Coast hubs like Los Angeles, Portland, and Seattle. You purchase a virtual phone number for each of the markets and forward calls to your call center based in Florida. Each of the numbers has an area code that matches each hub: LA → 213, Portland → 503, and Seattle → 206, respectively. Once each virtual phone number is advertised in each market, customers and clients call their respective numbers, and the call is routed to and answered in Florida.
However, those customers aren’t aware that their calls are being forwarded. Instead, your business appears to have a local presence without the expenses that come with establishing a brick-and-mortar presence. This allows your business to operate from remote locations with a local touch.
You can also use international call forwarding to grow your business in a new country in a similar fashion. By using an international virtual phone number, you can establish your organization’s presence in a new country. Imagine you have a US-based business that is looking to expand into lucrative new markets, like Dubai. By advertising your virtual phone number (+971 followed by 7 digits, for Dubai), locals in Dubai can contact your business with the understanding that your business has a presence in the United Arab Emirates. And these calls can be routed to your sales team in the United States.
Benefits of Using Call Forwarding
There are many benefits when it comes to using call forwarding through virtual phone number, especially for businesses:
- No need to establish a brick-and-mortar presence in new targeted markets:
With adequate advertising and promotion, callers will assume that your business has an office in their city. Many businesses don’t require having a dedicated office to run, so this approach can drastically reduce overheads that normally prevent a business’ expansion.
- A cost-effective alternative to employing additional staff and securing a lease:
If you find that your business hasn’t gained traction in that potential market, it’s not a big deal. Call forwarding services can be canceled in minutes, which is much less complicated than having to close a physical office and letting staff go.
- Forwarding calls creates a seamless integration into your current business model:
There’s no need to train new staff with complicated software or shell out funds for expensive hardware to handle call management capabilities. Instead, a service provider like Global Call Forwarding offers easy-to-use software with an intuitive dashboard that can be used with any device that you normally use in your business’ operations.
How To Forward Calls with a Virtual Number?
To use call forwarding, you will first need to purchase a virtual phone number. You can get call forwarding when you purchase any virtual phone number from Global Call Forwarding. Simply head to our website, enter the necessary information for the number you need, and follow the prompts.
Setting up a local or toll free number in one or more of the available countries is simple with Global Call Forwarding. After you complete the order, you will immediately receive a confirmation letter by email with your order details. Within few hours, our customer support staff will assign a number (unless you already selected one through the menu), verify your payment information, and activate your account. You will then receive a welcome letter with your account details upon activation.
After your activation is complete, you will have a new phone number in the country you want to receive local calls from. You can give your new call forwarding number to your customers and business associates. They can reach you by simply dialing the local or toll free number you have in that country.
As a Global Call Forwarding customer, you have full access to an online control panel to manage your new phone number in various ways, to view call details, and to activate many convenient features at a click of a button. Learn more about forwarding calls in our guide to setting up and use call forwarding.
Forward Calls and Increase Your Presence to Enhance Business Communications
Call forwarding is an exceptional tool for businesses and it is clear why so many businesses use it to enhance communications. It is very simple, affordable, and convenient while offering great efficiency. To purchase virtual phone numbers with forwarding capabilities for your business, head to Global Call Forwarding today.