Calling customers is not only about establishing personal communication. But the popularity of telephony has been observed to drive many businesses significantly, especially the service sector, to success. Nevertheless, telephony remains an emerging field aiming to be a 571 billion USD global market by 2025.

However, the companies often are unsure about selecting the right telephony products that fit their needs and offer good benefits. Businesses often face questions like- what is a toll-free number, what is a local phone number, etc.

The most common types of business telephony include popular toll-free numbers and local phone numbers. Both these telephony mediums are ideal for establishing a smooth communication network with existing and prospective customers. So let us go through the world of business telephony and guide you to make the right choice between these two.

What is a Local Phone Number?

Local phone number

( Source: globalcallforwarding )

The local phone numbers start with the three-digit local area code and are used by the businesses to communicate with the customers from a specific region only. The local phone numbers do not charge the companies for the incoming calls but only for outgoing calls. 

The virtual phone number or VoIP-based local area phone numbers are ideal for small or big businesses only aiming at a specific area. With more than 69% of customers likely picking a business call, let us know more about the value of these numbers to all sizes of companies.

Why Do You Need a Local Phone Number?

PBX-based local phone number vs. VoIP-based phone number

( Source: nextiva )

Many businesses may think about the difference between PBX-based and VoIP-based local phone numbers. 

The PBX-based system is traditionally available, while the VoIP system cuts all possible costs and makes communication highly efficient and reliable. 

According to Persistence Market Research, VoIP-based services are expected to reach $195 billion by 2024. However, this can only be if there are multiple reasons that businesses are opting for these local phone numbers. 

Here’s why any company can consider getting a virtual local phone number:

1 )  Builds Local Presence

Businesses may be located distantly but can operate in a specific region thanks to the local area phone numbers that help them build a local presence. There is no need to open dedicated offices when a local phone number can crack the deal for you.

2 ) Improves Customer Satisfaction

The level of direct contact and intimacy offered by the local phone numbers is exceptional. Hence, regardless of the issues with the products or the services, the customers will feel like you’re hearing them and taking care of their concerns. This directly improves customer satisfaction levels.

3 ) Adds credibility

Startups and small businesses face multiple operational challenges that make them prone to credibility issues. As a result, the customers think twice before selecting a startup over an established company. 

The local phone numbers improve the business credibility and help companies create trust and reliability in the specific region. In addition, it gives a sense to the customers that they’re significant for the service providers.

4 ) Gives a Professional Look

The strong brand image created by the local phone numbers offers exceptional benefits to the businesses. The customers reach businesses considering them highly professional and take everything seriously. This deepens the trust between the business and the company. With such a professional look, business seems legit to all new users.

5 ) Provides Consistency

Local phone numbers offer high consistency as these are not tied to one person. Remote working never disturbs the consistency of the services that are the key to retaining customers in the highly competitive markets. This consistency further ensures that no calls are missed from the business’s side.

6 ) Offers Local Advertising

It is easier to recognize a local phone number quickly than any other number. Hence, businesses can use these numbers in local advertising campaigns to draw quick leads. There is no need for additional marketing budgets when a simple local area phone number can benefit the businesses.

How to Install a Local Phone Number?

How to install a local phone number via CallHippo

Once you’re clear about a local phone number, it is time to look over the best ways to install these numbers for your business. Again, you can seek the help of the top service providers that offer PBX-based or VoIP numbers. 

It is easy to install a local area number that makes businesses provide customized solutions to the local customers and create a strong impact in the local markets.

Businesses can reach different telephony service providers to get a local phone number with the same area code as intended. These service providers check the availability of the desired numbers and then assign them to the companies at affordable pricing. 

The VoIP-based local area phone numbers are making the businesses get the best out of these local numbers and establish seamless communication with the local areas. There are no possible issues of staying connected with a single service provider. The local phone numbers come with quick and easy portability to other service providers if any problem arises.

Local Phone Number – Points to consider

After looking at the details, benefits, and ways to install a local phone number, it is essential to look at the key points that may not be favorable for the local phone number. Businesses should keep in mind the following topics:

  • Calling a local phone number from a different region is highly costly for the customer
  • A local phone number may make the customer feel that you’re present locally only and may create an impression of a small unit.

What is a Toll-free Number?

What is a toll-free number

Have you ever wondered what a toll-free call is? The toll-free numbers start with the prefixes like 1800 and are usually used as the business inquiry number or customer service department number only. Thus, the businesses pay for both – incoming and outgoing calls on toll-free numbers. 

It is 100% free for the customers and offers the best opportunity to connect with global customers without monetary concerns. As a result, businesses have increased their sales up to 200% using these toll-free numbers only. 

Additionally, the international toll-free numbers further set your business apart from the other competitors and help establish a strong and established entity in the market. 

Let us know more about the value of these toll-free numbers to different businesses.

Why Do You Need a Toll-free Number?

Benefits of having a toll-free number

( Source: exotel )

There are two available options in the toll-free numbers, i.e., a domestic toll-free and an international toll-free number. The domestic toll-free number may cover some benefits of the local area numbers, while the international toll-free numbers work perfectly in creating a solid brand image. 

Plus, the difference between domestic and international toll-free numbers overlap a bit. But businesses can go for any of these toll-free options for the following reasons:

1 ) Improves Customer Service

Customers prefer to communicate with the business before making a deal. This call is the companies’ first and often last chance to offer high customer service levels to convert the lead. The toll-free numbers provide much-needed support to the customers as they can reach the businesses quickly and directly without any interventions.

2 ) Allows Portability

Companies can retain their old toll numbers even after relocating to the new business locations. Hence, there are no odds in serving the customers seamlessly without changing business numbers frequently. This portability of the toll-free numbers makes them highly useful for businesses aiming to promote remote working.

3 ) Enhances Brand Image

A brand is made by its services to the customers, and having a toll-free number is highly useful for any business. It helps firms take an extra step to serve their audience better, and at the same time, helps improve the brand image. In addition, the highly recognizable business contact numbers improve the company’s image in the market.

4 ) Works as a Marketing Tool

Many businesses are promoting their toll-free numbers on different platforms. The best part is that these numbers attract large customers instantly. In addition, the “click-to-call” feature helps companies link their toll-free numbers on different promotional campaigns. As a result, the customers feel it easy and convenient to use the toll-free numbers to reach the specific business.

5 ) Provides Benefits of Cloud Like Scalability and Reliability

Toll-free numbers work on cloud technology and hence offer multiple advantages over traditional phone numbers. There is no match to the reliability and scalability of the toll-free numbers with numerous lines to different team members. Companies can thus rely on cloud benefits to offer the best customer experience. Plus, more firms are now choosing VoIP-based toll-free numbers, which are easy to manage and highly secure.

6 ) Saves Cost

It is easy to set up a toll-free number for your business while maintaining business affordability. It doesn’t require considerable time, and the subscription rates are more affordable than traditional phone services. In addition, toll-free numbers are available in monthly plans that improve operational costs.

How to Install a Toll-free Number?

How to install a VoIP-based or PBX-based toll-free number

Once the details and advantages of the toll-free international calls are precise, it is easy to get your new international toll-free number and look over the best ways to install these numbers for your business. 

You can seek the help of the top service providers that offer PBX-based or VoIP numbers. It is easy to install a toll-free number that makes companies pay for incoming and outgoing calls.

Businesses can reach different telephony service providers to get a toll-free number assigned to them. These service providers check the availability of the numbers and then allot them to the respective companies. 

The options to port to another service provider are always open, preventing the situation of getting trapped with an inefficient service provider.

Toll-free Phone Number – Points to Consider

After looking at the details, benefits, and ways to install a toll-free phone number, it is essential to look at the key points that may not be favorable for the toll-free number. Businesses should keep in mind the following topics:

  • Calling a toll-free number may not create a personalized experience impacting sales as customers know the services.
  • A toll-free phone number is many times considered spam or robotic call only. Hence, the chances are high that calls from a toll-free number may go unanswered.

Domestic vs. International Toll-free Numbers

Domestic toll-free numbers work for a specific region only, while international toll-free numbers have a global reach. In addition, the domestic toll-free numbers come with the least restrictions and affordable costs compared to international toll-free numbers. 

Whatever choice you make, it is hard for your customer to identify a domestic or international toll-free number.

Local Phone Number vs. Toll-free Number

Toll-free number vs. local phone number

( Source: avoxi )

It is easy to get confused about the benefits and disadvantages of the local phone number and a toll-free number.

So, here is a detailed comparison between the two top contenders in business telephony based on various parameters:

1 ) Customer’s Perception

Businesses are using telephony for the best services to customers. Hence, it is essential to know the customer’s perspective on the toll-free number vs. the local number. 

When it comes to incoming calls, toll-free numbers are the best as customers from different regions like the US, the UK, etc., can call a business without worrying about the charges. 

Things are not the same when it comes to the outgoing. Customers perceive the toll-free number as promotional or spam, while a local phone number is considered legitimate. 

The trust factor generated by the local phone numbers is indispensable compared to the toll-free number that gives a feel of the robotic call.

2 ) Creating a Personalized Effect

Toll-free numbers fail to create a personalized effect as they’re more like a robotic call. Many customers put the toll-free numbers in spam so that they’re not disturbed by the promotional calls. 

The local numbers come in handy in offering the best-personalized benefits and can be used by businesses to create a strong relationship with existing customers. 

This relationship works as a strong base for sales and has multiple benefits over the international toll-free number. First, the customers feel connected, and hence businesses can offer personalized effects.

3 ) Global Reach

You may have a big business, but your customer is always looking for affordable options in selecting the best service providers. 

However, when it comes to managing the global customers with the same efficiency as that of a local customer, the benefits of the worldwide toll numbers take over the local phone numbers. 

Calling a regional phone number may be costly for the customer who only wants to inquire about the details of the products or services. On the other hand, the toll-free numbers offer global connectivity and are widely used by companies who wish to expand globally.

4 ) Size of the Business

Like selecting any other business strategy, the selection of the local phone numbers and toll-free numbers is mainly dependent on the size of the business. Small businesses are likely to go with the local phone numbers than the toll-free numbers. 

The big businesses aiming at expansion prefer the toll-free numbers over the local numbers, giving them an edge to reach global customers. 

Big businesses have an established set of customers and hence need the best tools and techniques to manage existing customers and attract a new audience. 

So, in this fight of the toll-free vs. local, big businesses go for toll-free while the small ones go for the local phone numbers.

5 ) Type of Operations

Last but not least is the type of operations expected out of the telephony services. A toll-free number works well for incoming calls that include customer queries and all kinds of customer support. 

The local phone numbers are ideal for the outgoing calls by the sales team to establish the genuine and legitimate identity of the business. Moreover, you can share the toll-free numbers with different people to offer the best benefits. In contrast, the local free numbers can be allotted independently for smooth communication and voice mails. 

Hence, depending on the department and type of the functions, telephony services can be decided for any business.

Which is the Best for Your Business- Toll-free Number vs. Local Number?

Which is best: toll-free number vs. local phone number vs. vanity number

After having a detailed look at all aspects of local phone numbers and toll-free numbers, it is all about choosing the right product for your business. 

The difference between these two further clarifies that toll-free numbers work well for businesses having international customers. In contrast, the local phone numbers offer significant benefits over the domestic toll-free numbers.

You can select the best for your business according to the significant accomplishments of these two that are evident from the toll-free vs. local face-off. The local numbers are ideal for reaching customers or clients located locally and help companies establish their hold in the market. 

In addition, it works out perfectly in building personal and long relationships with all the local customers.

The toll-free numbers make two-way communication easy without worrying about the time and money losses. It further reinstates that clients or customers don’t have to shed heavy dollars in establishing contact with your business. 

Many businesses go for the international toll-free numbers to establish their operations’ legitimate nature and global presence. Hence, these numbers offer seamless communication and help drive the marketing strategies to new heights.

As an alternative, you can also use vanity numbers to help your customers remember you. In addition, vanity numbers make it easy to generate more business by functioning either as a toll-free number or local phone number.

Wrapping Up

So, a clear look at the details of both local phone numbers and toll-free numbers reveals that both are distinct and have multiple benefits to the businesses. For example, VoIP technology can offer business savings of up to 30% to 50%.

Clear differentiation between the local phone number and toll-free number help establish the proper selection for your business requirements. 

In short, a newly opened business can go for the local phone number to establish its foothold in the highly competitive markets. But, on the other hand, the established companies aiming at global presence can go for the international toll-free numbers or vanity numbers to attract large audiences.

 

Updated : November 9, 2021

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