All businesses need to have a phone number, especially online. It adds needed trust and credibility, if only to let people know you there is a human behind the screen. Most of us enjoy speaking with customers and require a way for us to contact us or our employees via phone. Now, it’s never a good idea to post your cell or home phone number online. Here are some viable options for setting up an online business phone system.
Option #1 for Business Phone or Online Customer Service
Buy a dedicated business phone($100+) and call up comcast or your local phone provider. Pay the $50+/month for service and and plug that old wire into a jack and have calls routed to your desk. This is a very basic system without sequencing, call forwarding etc.
Option #2 for Business Phone or Online Customer Service
Setup a virtual phone system, an excellent idea for any business or Online Customer Service. I know what you’re thinking, virtual cannot be as good as the real deal, a hard line connected to my desk. Well, the truth is that there are some polished virtual phone systems like Ringcentral, that work far better than the real thing.
Benefits of a Virtual Phone System:
- Custom Secure Phone number – Toll Free or Local(You don’t have to put your personal number on your website.)
- Custom Ring Hours – Set your call center hours
- Great voicemail with Voice to text options
- Advanced Call Routing – send calls to cell phone, desk phones and ring sequentially. This is a great feature because you can route the call to many different people. If one person doesn’t answer, it will go to a 2nd…etc.
- Fax Abilities
- Text Abilities
- Detailed Call Analytics(missed calls, volume, etc.)
- Custom Greeting and Web Receptionists
- Hold music
- ..and more!
You get $1000+ phone capabilities for $30/month.
I managed a completely mobile call center 3 years, running all online customer service. In fact, I was the call center. It was all done virtually. I had all the best features and settings customized for my exact needs. A customer called and got a company greeting. They either hit an extension or held for me. Then, the call was routed to my cell phone and I addressed customers concerns pre and post sales. The boss could see how many calls I was getting, average length of calls and how many calls I missed. If I knew now what I knew then, I would have routed the missed calls to a secretary somewhere.
So it’s obvious to use option #2 for todays model of a technology heavy, low overhead business. Virtual Phone services leverage many advanced technologies to bring you Fortune 500 company features, at startup prices.
With a virtual phone system you will have your own “secretary” who works 24/7 and does everything you ask of her and provide the best online customer service as well.
by Jason Jelonek
So tell me, what are your reservations?