One thing that you may be considering getting for your company is a toll-free number. These numbers allow clients to call you from practically anywhere for free, with the cost of long-distance calls being placed on the company instead of the customer. Whether you are a startup working for home or a large corporation, subscribing to a toll-free number can be a boost to your business.
What Is a Toll-Free Number?
A toll free number for business is a phone number subscription through your provider which allows customers to call you from a long-distance area code without having to have a higher phone bill. This service costs you a monthly fee as well as a per-minute usage fee. The three-digit area codes used for these numbers are regulated by the Federal Communications Commission and include 800, 888, 877, 866, 855, 844 and 833. Toll-free numbers are colloquially known as 1-800 numbers because that was the first area code used, but with so many having been issued since they were started in 1967, more have been added since.
Where Do You Get One?
To get an 800-number you will first choose from a list of Responsible Organizations, or RespOrgs. These organizations will reserve a number on your behalf from the FCC on a first-come, first-served basis as well as administer and manage the relevant records. Many RespOrgs will also offer subscription services, saving you time on researching two different organizations for one task. Your number will be able to move with you when you change Responsible Organizations or service providers. The FCC does not assign you a number or keep lists of them, but there are ways to see if a number has been taken and you can request a vanity number from your RespOrg such as one that spells out your company name or relevant service.
How Does a Business Benefit?
One of the biggest benefits your company can get from having a toll-free number is an increase in sales and information calls. Your clients can call you from just about anywhere to ask a question or to put an order. This increases the pool of customers you can have and since they will not have to pay long-distance rates, customers will be more likely to contact you. Unfortunately, the lack of cost can also increase the number of prank calls you get.
The decision to get a toll-free number for your company can make a big difference in how many customers you can find and retain. These numbers are available for a subscription cost and you can even get a vanity number for no additional fees.