Business contact numbers have always been the first point of interaction where generally most of the customer communication is initiated. In the business world, this is the first and foremost mode of conversation, hence this is an integral part of the whole work-funnel.
Well if we talk about the journey from getting important customers leads to converting them into meaningful customers, toll-free numbers play a significant role in this process.
Toll-free numbers are the lifeline of business communication in the present world. They are one of the most prominent features a business can avail for better brand recognition.
It won’t be wrong to say that by optimizing this cell, businesses can optimize the whole anatomy of their sales cycle.
So here in this write-up, we will address all the aspects (good & bad) of a tollfree number and get more clarity on the same. Be it the advantages/disadvantages, the future scope, or busting some major myths related to tollfree numbers.
What is a toll-free number?
Tollfree numbers are the numbers where customers can reach out to the businesses free of cost. Hence, they are called tollfree numbers since all the charges are levied in the businesses and not on the customers.
There are some essential features that can be only availed by the toll-free numbers. Toll-Free numbers are a set of digits that is beneficial in projecting the brand image, they are easy to recall, create the unified contact point mapped to various customer service agents, and last but not least they are free of any charges from customer’s end.
So we can say that having an integrated suite of accountability (in terms of incoming calls demographics, call recording, logs, etc) tollfree numbers are a one-stop solution for simplified call management & effective business marketing.
How customers interact with the SMB business phone numbers?
The most important aspect of any business is how they acquire customers and retain them and similarly the business value throughout the period of time.
Toll-Free number’s recall ability with prospective customers and toll-free numbers can help us do the same, i.e mostly people google a company on their smartphones, click on the hyperlinked directory and get immediately connected.
Let’s assume if we talk about the acquisition of customers, we should be more focussed particularly on customer interaction. The first mode of contact generally being over a phone call we would be equipped with a setup which helps us to maximize the flow through the complete sales cycle.
Point is, getting a toll free number is not much of rocket science but getting a toll-free number provider that helps in maximizing your business reachability is.
Why is the toll-free number required?
Toll-free numbers are the lifeline of the business communication industry. It has been the most prominent mode through which customers interact with businesses.
Now coming to the business approach we can see that, the toll-free number is to business as the wheel is to cycle i.e the fundamental requirement for sales cycle to continue (acquiring, converting & retention)
These particular 10/11 digits of unified, trackable, accountable, interactive contact point which can be used for building a brand image consistent with your product/service and integrated with the system in place for your converging point of regular, advertised phone calls.
Now, what I am trying to tell is not a very delusional idea but a very practical, tested & tried a technique which has proven to be a boon for the small, medium & large enterprises if implemented correctly.
Lastly, the toll-free number is not just a luxury for businesses to reach out, but a tool required for your business presence, recall ability, and the most fundamental point of interaction with your customers. If the first impression has a positive impact , i.e caller gets quickly connected with all the desired customer care representative then overall brand persona in the mind of the audience becomes that of a genuine business which quickly acts in the favor of customer convenience.
Let’s see the complete picture (pros/cons)?
Here are the major pros and cons of availing a toll-free number for the business, they have been covered comprehensively and their all facets have been
Advantages of a toll-free number:
- Improving customer retention
- Superior Customer Service
- 24/7 customer support
- Removes obstacles
- Customer care and support
- Point of Sales and Information
Downsides of a toll-free number:
- Increase in the phone bill
- Not a Stand-Alone Medium
Here is the version of pros and cons of having a toll-free number:
Complete Analysis Of The Pros/Cons
Pros: Here are some of the benefits of the toll-free number.
i) Improving customer retention::
- Being a customer and getting a vibe that you are being ignored or your issue is not being handled seriously is a valid point and should never induce a lead prospect nor an existing customer to getting lost in the internet noise
- They are easy to memorize and that’s the main reason for clients using MyOperator custom number for its further point of purchasing.
- The toll-free number gives out the impression that you are having a national presence and not just a local one.
- Hassle-free relocation setup: there is no hassle whatsoever, simply put, you can set up your call management in minutes as there is no involvement of any sort of hardware or software
Use Case :
Contacting the customer by raising email ticket, chatbot complaint box The factor of human touch is missing then it is not possible to get the problem/query of a less tech-savvy person solved is more of a relief than any other comprehensive step by step mail guiding through the steps. The prompt and cheerful human response, no chatbot/email can beat that.
ii) Customer Service (an advantage in today’s scenario)
Yes, these toll-free numbers having a nostalgic feeling of the 90 are still relevant rather improved with time. The feeling of a live cheerful response is any day better than a chatbot or an email follow-up. Now considering the customer retention being a bigger role in the process of sales we can see it in the following points :
- Never lose a lead, it is easy for a company to get on the bad side of the customer if he/she gets a feeling that they are being ignored or not being provided adequate assistance .. now intentionally or unintentionally this business is going to move away.
- Easy to set up, as compared to the PBX system
- Your customers need not pay for getting their problems solved, it doesn’t reflect well on the company side.
- A significant amount of cost reduction for the call handling part and the multiple call assistants, monitoring, salary.
- Comes with the trust of a brand as well as the product with all the bells & whistles such as call masking, call whispering, call recording, multi-level IVR, CRM integration APIs, reporting
- Easily portable around the locations, your customers can reach you irrespective of your geographical position.
- Get reached by forwarding your calls to your cell-phone, landline or IP phone.
- The number will be with the foreseen future as the number portability is one of the other perks you get
Cons: The disadvantages of the toll-free number
i) Slightly Expensive – Comparatively the charge of the toll-free number is more than that of a local number than a local phone number.
ii) Not a Stand-Alone Medium – There are other sources of marketing other than the phone number such as paid advertisements, click to call ads, display ads but here also the number provides an extra edge to the customer if the number provided has good recall ability.
Let’s consider the ROI prospects
Data analysis is the major benefit in the following cases where it is extremely important to have a call management system that can We can be a master analytic reader as per the tools provided to us by a complete suite of call management platform, in the following manner.
- More Inbound Leads & Sales: as all of us require the sound business rolling. the incoming leads are the bread and butter of the entire sales cycle and company growth and it should reside at the heart of any to derive them in a productive manner
- Trackable Campaigns: The Campaigns which are spread through various Offline & Online Activities (social media campaigns, paid ads) & offline we could have banners, flyers, newspaper advertisements.
- Subscription Lists: Building the subscription list for emailing, getting our word out there having a connection of personal cooperation and empathy, announcements of our company.
- Increasing Efficiency & Productivity: tollfree
- Evaluation Of Services: Getting the evaluation and feedback from both of your prospective and existing customers customers
- Capture Campaign: We can track down the entire customer profile and get its numbers and demographic region for targeting and retargeting them
- Throw out the call missed, call holding, call waiting & other similar technical obstacles out of the window because when it comes to cloud telephony a virtual receptionist and a call management system are there to serve them around the clock.
Check out case studies to know how they benefited from the same.
FCQ (Frequently Confused Questions)
Some frequently asked questions which are not so frequently answered correctly regarding toll-free numbers.
Question 1: Why is the toll-free number so important even in the 21st century?
Myth Busted: Is it outdated as now the long-distance calling charges have gone down drastically?
Yes/No, both, let me elaborate, as compared to the old tv commercial times where the toll-free number was the hero element of the entire marketing campaign.
You can say that it is not the guest of the hour but similarly, it has not gone down the drain as seems to still relevant to others. we have moved towards the era of IoT & Cloud raining down on the tech hardware orthodox implementation in an unprecedented way for it.
Ques 2: Tollfree, Isn’t that something only for the big businesses?
Myth Busted: Pop and this bubble is burst, no monsieur, it’s used by small and medium businesses too
A toll-free number is no longer an expensive luxury for large businesses–it’s now an inexpensive necessity for small businesses
The exponential wave of internet telephony has given businesses plenty of options and flexibility when it comes to choosing a toll-free telephone number. It is no longer necessary to work with the local telephone service provider in order to secure a toll-free number. Web-based applications make securing toll-free service a matter of a few simple clicks.
Question 4: Customers call when they encounter a problem?
Myth Busted: You as a business owner may feel that most customers call into a company when they encounter some problem. But the truth is less than 25% of customers complain when they have an issue.
Companies often spend large capital in providing customers with avenues to complain but 90% of customers don’t bother to use them. Instead, they tell other consumers two-three bad things about the business. Hence, it is crucial to address their issues.
Question 5: More calls means you will be getting lower profits?
Myth Busted: Most companies consider customer calls as a way to improve. It is said that return-on-investment for every customer call taken and resolved is 100%. Hence, customer calls must be taken as a way to strengthen weak areas and put the best efforts to resolve them.
These are the common myths that you may have overlooked for a long time. Your business may be competent to spend millions on good customer service but knowing these little things can enable you to handle and resolve customer complaints effectively. By avoiding these common myths, your business can hit the bull’s eye for sure!
Question 6 : More complaint calls means more money to solve ?
Myth Busted: You don’t need to give your customers cash-refunds or compensations after their complaint calls. 80% of customer complaints are no-brainers and can be addressed with a clear explanation.
It is crucial to get more customers complaining and getting their issues resolved instead of losing business or giving them compensation.