Most businesses of any size need some type of phone system to be able to communicate with customers, suppliers, and even among employees. Traditional telephone systems can be expensive, but newer virtual phone systems offer many great features at much lower prices. Here are a few benefits to opting for a virtual phone system for your business.
Use Your Own Hardware
Everyone carries a cellphone with them pretty much everywhere they go these days. A virtual phone app allows you to use your personal phone as your business phone, meaning you won’t have to buy any new telephone hardware to get up and running. This also means that you can take your business phone with you anywhere that you need to be — you’ll never have to be stuck in the office when you have phone calls to make. Of course, this also means you can be reached virtually any time of day, so be sure to set office hours for yourself.
Using cell phones as your business phones also means you won’t be left sitting on outdated phone hardware in just a few years. People upgrade cell phones frequently enough that your employees will always have access to relatively current technology without a complete phone system overhaul.
Make Use of Automation
Virtual phone systems can be programmed to have an automated message play when someone calls, rather than requiring a person to answer each phone call. Sometimes this type of message may contain all of the information that the caller needs, such as your business hours or location. If the caller still needs to talk to a person, though, the automated answering system can route the call to the appropriate recipient.
Most virtual phone systems are also set up to automatically send transcripts and recordings of all voicemail messages to a specified email address. You’ll know when you have voicemail to listen to, and you can do that instantly without having to log in to a voicemail system. This makes it quick and easy to respond to missed calls any time from any place.
Another great feature of virtual phone apps is automated call routing or distribution. When you have a phone-based team, such as a customer support line, calls can be routed to the entire team at once, so that whichever employee is available can answer. This means your customers will not be left waiting on hold if one of your customer service representatives is already helping another customer.
Have Multiple Phone Numbers
If your business has multiple locations, you can have separate phone numbers for each, and all will ring through to the same virtual phone app. You can give your business a more local presence by choosing numbers that correspond with the area codes where each location is, and still have the calls come through to your employees wherever they might be working at that time.
To give a small business the feel of a bigger company, you can also choose to have a toll-free business number. This can also be beneficial if your business is entirely online and you don’t want to appear to have a specific business location by using a local number. Toll-free numbers can engender a sense of trust in customers. You can also customize your toll-free number to spell a word that is relevant to your business and easy to remember.
Get Customized Business Phone Metrics
Some virtual phone app systems come with in-depth call reporting that can help you optimize your use of telephones in your business. You can see basic information such as who you received calls from and who your employees called.
Beyond that, though, other useful information that your phone system can provide might be what times of day you tend to receive calls, how long each caller waited to have his or her call answered, and how many calls went to voicemail. You can use this information to determine if you need to hire more people to answer phones during your busiest times of day to improve customer service.
Setting your business up with a virtual phone app is a great way to save money on your phone system and still provide great phone support to your customers. The many features of modern phone systems offer you great flexibility in how you use your phones to do business.