Cloud Telephony

Virtual phone number: A tool for advancing customer communication

A lot has been written in the past few years about virtual phone numbers, its significance, and what it has to offer to a business.

It won’t be wrong to say that this popularity largely arises out of two facts:

How essential it is for businesses to empower their team to work from dispersed locations while remaining a cohesive unit and performing with ease and efficiency.

The role of a virtual phone number in bringing advancement in customer service, something businesses just can’t deny.

With the advent of virtual phone systems, businesses have experienced a significant change and so its usage has been evident across the sectors, countries and organization sizes.

Given their rising popularity, I thought it would be wise to summarize all the relevant information on virtual numbers for businesses planning to opt for one.

Here’s presenting a list of questions and answers to give better clarity on virtual numbers and help you make an informed decision about its implementation for your business communication.

What is the meaning of virtual number?

Virtual phone number is an online display number rather than a terrestrial phone line fixed to a permanent handset.

It is a front number with multiple phone numbers mapped behind it, invisible to your callers while they are dialling your virtual number.

Calls coming on the virtual number are routed simultaneously to the preset phone numbers mapped behind them.

Call routing on virtual phone numbers can be automatic or based on the caller’s input (IVR menu), to be decided as per the number of subscribers.

Phone numbers of any locality can be mapped behind it with no restriction of geography or need for agents to be in office only.

A virtual phone number can be a fancy looking number (vanity number), a toll free number, or a 10 digit mobile number, all with similar attributes.

What are the benefits of a virtual number?

The adoption of a virtual phone number has several advantages compared to remaining bound to the conventional ones.

1. A virtual number empowers your business to attend multiple calls parallelly as your agents can attend different calls at the same time from their respective mobile phones.

2. Different virtual numbers assigned to different platforms can be used for business marketing enabling your marketers to get a better picture of their marketing ROI.

3. Virtual phone numbers bring mobility and ease to your agent’s call handling (and most of all reduce their stress level) as their need to remain glued to office landlines to receive calls is eliminated.

4. You can even take your customer service to another level by extending your office hours, or go all the way and provide round-the-clock assistance. This would be doable as your agents can easily attend the calls from their homes directly.

5. Customers expect to get informed & capable assistance at first go. A virtual number, when attached with an IVR, makes it easier for your callers to connect with their concerned agent with just a click on the keypad.

virtual phone number infographic

In case of a few providers, a virtual phone number also comes with a dashboard providing you features like tracking, recording, and reporting of your customer calls. And, this becomes even more important here as you’ll be handling a remote team of agents, especially after the office hours.

How does a virtual phone number works?

1. When the call is placed on a virtual phone number, an IVR is played and the callers can select the menu option as their requirement.

2. The call is routed to the number mapped behind that selected menu option.

3. The personal phone number of the caller and the agent will not be visible to either side and masked behind the virtual number.

4. As the call is connected with the agent, the call is tracked, recorded and updated real-time on the panel (only if the number is provided by MyOperator).

What are the types of virtual number?

Tollfree numbers

A tollfree number is a display number with all the above-mentioned features of a virtual number. However, when a call is placed on the tollfree number, it is free of cost for the caller. The tollfree number subscriber will pay the calling charges of both the ends. A tollfree virtual phone number helps in increasing the reputation of a brand in front of its potential customers by facilitating them with free calling.

Mobile numbers

This kind of virtual numbers looks like regular 10 digit mobile numbers, obviously, with the advanced attributes and advantages. Calls placed on these numbers are chargeable for callers while the number subscriber will only have to pay the call forwarding cost. A number like this simply makes it easier for your team to manage high call volume easily and eliminate the need to publish different numbers for different branches separately.

Vanity numbers

Vanity numbers are nothing but fancy and easy-to-recall numbers. These fancy vanity numbers can be a mobile number or tollfree number but will function with the traits of a virtual number. Vanity numbers significantly increase the brand recall value and recognition amongst the potential audience.

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