Many think starting a business is difficult. But, starting may be the easiest part. What comes after is the real challenge!
Attending to customer needs, spreading the word, and perfecting your products and services is an arduous task, to say the least. The most important part of any business always revolves around communication.
Among newer digital mediums like emails, SMSes, chatbots and more, a business number still remains the most important and effective communication tool for a business. It adds to your accessibility and even helps drive more sales and revenues.
Imagine this, a prospect is going through your products and services. Upon finding their match, they would want to instantly contact you. Even in the age of high speed internet, a business phone number is the quickest way to do so.
With several options—emails, SMSes, toll free, local or virtual phone numbers—businesses can get overwhelmed over which medium to pick for building customer relations.
Toll free numbers are a good option for setting up a national presence. Besides enhancing your business image, toll free numbers allow quick and cheap communications for your customers.
How have local numbers impacted the scope of businesses?
Earlier traders were not able to physically meet customers farther than a few miles; let alone come close to their expectations. Technology and telecommunications have definitely made the world wonderfully smaller, allowing businesses to fulfil orders even 10,000 miles.
Did you know, 90% of customers rate an ‘immediate’ response as essential or very important when interacting with customer service representatives. Moreover, 60% of customers define ‘immediate’ to be 10 minutes or less.
For decades, business phone numbers have helped industries deliver products and services to their customers at the fastest speed possible. They helped businesses transform the way they communicated with their customers and other stakeholders.
But, like for any other product or service, competition for telecommunications also grew.
This resulted in increased costs and maintenance. However, with the advent of cloud technology and solutions like virtual numbers, businesses were introduced to newer opportunities. The cloud also opened up the doors to international reach.
Benefits of having a local number
Local numbers have become the preferred choice amongst many businesses. When a prospect is in search of any product or service, local directories are the first resource to look for.
With a local presence, businesses can advertise to their communities and strengthen their presence, as close-knit communities encourage local businesses.
When we talk about virtual phone systems, local numbers are not the first feature to come to your mind. The market is saturated with information about the benefits of toll free numbers. Today, we dive into how local numbers help businesses.
Local numbers make customers more connected to your business
Customers encourage businesses present in their locality. In such cases, 1800 numbers or a toll free number with a country-wide presence can make your business feel too impersonal and large for local audiences. Customers would always be more comfortable dialling a local number as opposed to an 1800 number or a number with complex area codes.
Get more done with multiple local numbers
Depending on the operational complexity and the size of your business, you may need to operate more than one local number. For example, if your business has operations in Delhi and Mumbai, buying two local numbers for each city, can widen your local presence.
Create a sense of community with your customers
Another great benefit of establishing a local presence is establishing a sense of belonging with your customers. As an empathetic brand, it is important to be able to connect with your customers rather than being seen as a faceless organisation. Virtual numbers prove to be valuable assets for the same!
Therefore, virtual numbers can add massive value addition to your customer service strategy. Let us look at some of the amazing features that come with local virtual numbers.
1. Call transfer
Don’t trouble your customers by giving them different numbers for different agents. Simply redirect the call, internally. In other terms, you can direct the customer to the relevant department by dialling that particular agent yourself.
2. Call routing
Help your customers reach the right destination with smart call routing that works as per your customised configuration. You can set different call routing strategies like simultaneous ringing, round robin and order by dispensing on the need of your call volumes.
3. Call queuing
With increased call volumes, place incoming calls on a pleasant queue. Ensure that you get the first person on call first and then follow the sequence.
4. Call analytics
This feature would let you optimise your call management and make strategic decisions regarding the performance of agents. Analyse call volumes, average handling time, track answered and unanswered calls and train your staff to give better results.
What to look out for while choosing a virtual number service provider?
- Business size: Service providers ask for a total number of employees and offer different plans to start-ups, medium and large enterprises.
- Extensions: This depends on the call volume for your business. If your business is heavily dependent on customer calls, you should consider a plan with more extensions and vice-versa.
- Service and support: Ensure to choose a service provider that has your back in times of crisis. Look for round the clock support and speedy resolutions.
To sum up
With the right features (and the right service provider), local numbers can become a boon for your brand endeavours. It helps you establish a local presence and build a community for your brand.
This way, your customers develop an affinity with your brand and become advocates, who spread positive word of mouth on social media and other platforms. Deploying this cloud telephony solution will also help you with retaining the customers and multiplying your revenues. A simple local number can truly change your business communication.
To know more about it, call us at 1800-120-4132