Phone Answering Service For Small Business

A busy small business can often have missed calls when they only have a few staff, especially if you are on site or are normally in an out of an office location. So when you return your call, the person doesn’t answer or they’ve moved on to another firm. This is where City Numbers Phone Answering Service For Small Business can help you.

It is a known fact that customers get frustrated and will look elsewhere when you don’t answer your phone and they continually hit your voicemail – is this a risk you are willing to take? By using City Numbers UK based Phone Answering Service, you can avoid potentially losing out on a business opportunity, and be comfortable in the knowledge that you will never miss a call again.

Prioritise Your Time With Our Phone Answering Service

Aside from helping your business save money and giving your customers a service they should expect to receive, we can also save your precious business time.

Maybe you are a tradesperson who needs to spend a lot of time in their day to day work, rather than have time to pick up a call.

Phone Answering Service For Small Business

You could be an estate agent who has to be out on viewings and is unable to take calls at certain times of the day; a sole trader who is working abroad, or is perhaps on holiday and wants to avoid the possibility of losing a new business lead due to a difference in time zones.

Maybe you have considered streamlining your staffing costs and want to reduce overheads by closing your office at weekends whilst still having the facility to take calls and get the details emailed to you.

Our Phone Answering Service For Small Business allows you to prioritise who to call back, and when, without the risk of losing business to a competitor. In turn the caller knows they have spoken to someone, so they are confident that their call is being dealt with. It’s a win, win situation for both you and your caller.

Speak To Us About Our Phone Answering Service For Small Business

Speak to us to see how we can help your business succeed in getting your calls answered efficiently. We maintain a professional and dedicated approach to all of our customers and their calls, we answer them as your business and there is no automated voice records, it’s pure, original and real life people answering your calls, how you want.

 

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Professional Voice Over

First impressions really do count, especially when it comes to the way your business is portrayed. Professional voice over is exactly what you need for your first contact with a customer or potential customer.

When you listen to an IVR based call; for example; where you are routed across several different destinations on a phone call, you want clear instruction and an understandable tone. And this is where something like a professional voice over can help.

Professional Voice Over, What is It?

A message recorded by our professional voice artists, which can be implemented in the following ways on your business phone numbers:

  • As IVR routed directions (press 1 for …)
  • A greeting message (welcome to..)
  • Busy voicemail message (You have reached our office..)
  • Out of hours voicemail message (Our offices are now closed..)
  • A queuing system (You are number 2 in the queue…)

How Does It Work?

If you own a phone number with us you simply email us the script you would like us to record for you, and we will arrange the professional voice over, and subsequently activate it on your telephone line and charge your account.

Otherwise, please navigate to our number choices and choose your new phone number, along with the professional voice over feature, and we can set you up that way.

Our voice artists are able to record anything from a simple message to an IVR which is tailored and targeted to your customers’ needs, making it a selling tool as well as being an informative solution should you wish it to be.

For example, think about the Christmas period, is there a specific product or service you would like to promote, or do you simply need an updated Christmas opening hours message?

What Are The Benefits Of Professional Voice Over?

  • Inexpensive set up costs
  • The ability to implement changes quickly and easily
  • An invaluable addition to your customers journey, giving them confidence in your services
  • A professional voice over giving information on an IVR can free up your time from having to answer general questions, about for example your opening hours, leaving you to do what you do best, running your business

Speak to us today about how our professional voice over services can be implemented on your business telephone line.

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Receptionist Service

receptionist service

How can a third-party company answering your business calls benefit your business? Take a look at what a receptionist service is and the benefits they offer your business.

Whether you are a large corporation with business locations across the globe or a local start-up emerging into a competitive marketplace, there are business solutions that can have a monumental impact on your business.

Your customers have expectations. As a business, you ideally want to exceed their expectations. Is there anything worse than a customer phoning a business only to be greeted with a phone that is never answered or when it is answered, the service is not of the standard they expect?

For any business, employing someone to ‘sit by the phone in case it rings’ is not a solution that is economic nor desirable. But investing in an receptionist service is.

What is a Receptionist Service?

As a business, you pay for another company, specialists in not only taking calls on behalf of other businesses, to manage your incoming calls.

When a customer phones, their call is answered and either a message is taken or the call diverted on to a specific location, e.g. your business mobile.

In other words, you invest in a receptionist service, a real person who records your calls, answers them, monitors and reports to you monthly statistics on calls and so on.

The Benefits of a Receptionist Service

A receptionist service solution offers many benefits;

  • It is a dynamic response to the age-old problem of who answers the phone
    and when?
  • It prevents lost calls or customers hanging up because they are not getting
    through.
  • There may be busy time or pinch points and with a receptionist service, it is
    possible to scale up (and scale back) the response.
  • When performance is enhanced, you capture more customers via your
    phone lines.
  • Customer satisfaction is key and not only will they get a great service when
    they phone, but they are also left with a fantastic impression of your business.
  • It prevents customer frustration with your business – in other words, no
    more irritating engaged tone to contend with or a long wait to get to the front
    of the queue.
  • No matter what is happening in the day-to-day running of your business,
    continuity is ensured – and so when you and your team are on a team
    building session, the phone is still being answered!

Suitable for all businesses irrespective of size or industry, is a receptionist service something you’ve considered?

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Virtual Call Tracking – A Simple Solution For Tracking Calls

No time to learn or no knowledge of google analytics? Need a simple call tracking solution instead? You can use our UK Virtual Call Tracking numbers to understand your call marketing easier.

Which door is the right one

Virtual Call Tracking Can Be Simple

There are plenty of solutions out there for tracking your marketing, but a lot of them can be extremely confusing at first and very in depth beyond what a lot of people want. Does your local plumber or window cleaner look at analytics when they get home? I doubt it very much, it’s been a hard day and spending hours rifling through stats is not a fun prospect.

We make it simple; through the usage of our inbound numbers.

Continue reading

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0800 Numbers – A Free Phone Number

0800 numbers are a non-geographic UK phone number, traditionally used as a freephone number for businesses. They currently compete with 03 and local UK numbers in its market for giving customers a cheap number to call, this is because of its history with mobile call charges before the changes in July 2015.


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Before July 2015, 0800 numbers were free to phone only from land line numbers and call charges to mobiles would range in price depending on your mobile provider, it was part of some providers free tariffs, but essentially mobile users had to pay for the call.

This lead to 0800 not being a ‘true freephone’ number and resulted in a shift of attitude from businesses to use 03 numbers instead, as their customers wanted cheap calls (03 are charged at local rate) no matter where in the UK they are calling from.

telephone free to call 0800 numbers

0800 Numbers Are Better

Since the July 2015 changes, 0800 numbers have been back in resurgence because they are now free to call from UK land line and mobile numbers. This results in businesses having a number that doesn’t define location, is easily recognisable and is free for their customers to call!

If we compare 0800 numbers to UK local and 03 numbers there are positives and negatives, as with all business numbers, it just depends on what works for you and your customer.

0800 numbers are FREE to call; as we have mentioned. However, the cost of the mobile call to the 0800 number is put on the owner of the 0800 number in order to warrant the free calling for a customer’s call.

This is called a mobile surcharge and is normally a few pence per minute. SO, when purchasing an 0800 number through any company make sure you qualify what the mobile surcharge is and if there isn’t one, why isn’t there one and where is that company making up that loss?

0800 Numbers Compared

If you compare this to 03 and local numbers, this is where your value of a customer or free call needs to be calculated by you. 03 and local numbers charge callers a local rate.

However, local numbers give away your location and 03 numbers cost your customer for calling these numbers, they also aren’t as recognisable publicly as 0800 numbers are due to the way they are advertised.. Normally, 0333 (publicly available), 0300 (charities/gov), 0345/0344 (replaces 0845/0844 for companies that want a cheaper alternative), whereas 0800 is 0800 freephone, and that’s it!.

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2018 Independence Day Celebration

Independence day is an important part of American history and because we are part of a bigger group with ties to the USA, we thought it would be nice to celebrate the 4th of July with a promotional offer to our customers.

What is an Independence Day Celebration?

Independence Day, or the Fourth of July as it is often referred, is a national holiday in the United States. It is to celebrate the thirteen American Colonies independence from the British Empire and regarding themselves as the United States of America.

The celebration day is often associated with family reunions, parties, fireworks and many other public and private events.

As part of our promotional offer we are supplying a code that will give you 20% off your first months rental and the initial setup fee on online orders. You can use this against our USA number ranges or any other number you need.*

USA Phone Numbers

We offer a multitude of USA phone numbers that allow you to divert a USA based number to anywhere in the world, most notably back to head offices or office mobiles in the UK. We can even build out your USA phone number with call features to make it even more feature rich and personal to your business needs.

*Cannot be used with any other deals and is not applicable for dealers or resellers.

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World Cup 2018 Fan ID, Promo and General Location Info

The World Cup is finally upon us once again and this time it’s in Russia. From Saint Petersburg to Sochi, the locations cover a large area.

Fan ID

An interesting part of the trip to this World Cup is the Fan ID identification that is required for attending the event and also linked from fifa.com (http://www.fifa.com/worldcup/organisation/fan-id/index.html).

https://www.fan-id.ru/ is the official URL for the FAN ID page and it appears to allow an ease of travel throughout Russia for the World Cup with Visa free Entry and Free Transport supplied with the FAN ID

However there is a disclaimer from Fifa denying any responsibility in the actioning and use of the FAN ID.

Reported Contact information for the Fan ID is:

Russia Stadium Locations

Locations for the stadiums with local dialling codes are:

  • Saint Petersburg – 812
  • Ekaterinburg – 343
  • Nizhny Novgorod – 81622
  • Kazan – 843
  • Moscow – 495/496
  • Kaliningrad – 401
  • Saransk – 834
  • Samara – 8462
  • Volgograd – 8442
  • Rostov – 863
  • Sochi – 862

Promotional Offering

As part of the celebrations of the World Cup we will be offering a promotional code for 20% off any country phone number, that we supply, that participating in the world cup. Look out next month for the promotional code.

Countries Participating:

Egypt Australia Belgium Costa Rica Argentina
Morocco IR Iran Croatia Mexico Brazil
Nigeria Japan Denmark Panama Colombia
Senegal Korea Republic England Peru
Tunisia Saudi Arabia France Uruguay
Germany
Iceland
Poland
Portugal
Russia
Serbia
Spain
Sweden
Switzerland

 

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A GDPR Summary

GDPR is upon us and no matter if you’re a small or large business, everyone is affected. The GDPR summary encompasses growing concerns over security breaches in recent years, which has prompted the EU for changes in the way businesses are storing, transferring and handling customer data.

Fines are imminent to businesses who are not looking to comply with the new GDPR compliance after its completion deadline of the 25th May 2018. The maximum fines being 4% of global turnover for the most serious of infringements.

Privacy is Key For GDPR

Privacy of customer data is the key ingredient here and making sure that your business is a) handling that data correctly and b) getting the right consent to process the customers data.

Previously, terms and conditions could be used, but in a GDPR summary these conditions of consent are stronger and you are required to make it easy for the customer to understand their committent of details and making it simple to withdraw consent.

An example of this could be credit card details you take over the phone. Are you simply just writing them down or repeating them out-loud when dealing with a customer? You need to handle your customer data correctly in order to be more secure.

We offer Secure Phone Payment Services
Call 0207 760 7600

Secure Personal Data

However, you could secure yourself and your customers by incorporating different technologies into the business. An example for credit cards would be a PCI compliant software that hides card details during a transaction. Secure for you and the customer.

You can cover yourself in other areas by adding encryption on databases and backups. Make sure you do not write down customer details or send over unsecure channels.

Also, taking a customers consent correctly for marketing and future contact is important, and you need to make removal off of these lists simple and easy. Also, make sure your businesses access to customer data is also limited.

As with anything like this you should take the appropriate action and get professional advice from legal and qualified entities that can advise your business.

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Using An SMS Broadcast Service

An SMS broadcast service is a handy little feature that helps you save time and money. It is a service that delivers the same SMS message to multiple people, at the same time, instead of you retyping or resending an identical message yourself.

sms broadcast service image

GDPR and SMS Broadcast Service

SMS broadcasting is ideal for marketing, but with the likes of GDPR upon us you now have to be careful with how you utilise the marketing part of the service. You need to make sure contact numbers have opted in ‘to be contacted’ and are also given the ability to opt-out.

The opt-in can be classed as a ‘soft’ opt-in, if the contact is a current customer, or an ex-customer. You will still need an opt-out option and can only detail services the contact has, or has previously had.

Remember, it’s your responsibility to look after contact details and respect the rights of the owner.

Business Uses for SMS Broadcast

SMS marketing is just a fraction of what an SMS broadcast can be used for. It has a multitude of functionality for your business needs:

  • Service Updates (has something happened to an existing service?)
  • Staff Updates (for shifts or changes)
  • Reminders (for scheduled events, etc..)
  • Cancellations

These types of SMS broadcasts are beneficial to your current customers. The service itself saves you time in actually having to setup manual messages. Instead you can broadcast them to a range of approved numbers.

This helps with keeping your customers or staff better informed, and at a relatively cheap price. It avoids the hassles of email responders, email previewers and failing email addresses.

You can view SMS broadcast costing here and make sure that you’re keeping up-to-date with recommended products by checking our blog regularly.

 

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How Do I Get A Toll Free Number?

One of the most common questions that we are asked is “how do I get a toll free number? So let us explain how and why as while it’s not always straight forward for us, it’s easy for you. But to answer this we need to first understand what a toll free number is!

What is a Toll Free Number?

Toll free numbers are essentially free to call phone numbers. The UK version of a toll free number would be a 0800 number, for example.

Toll free is the generic term given to these free to call numbers and while we call them 0800 numbers, we can’t use this term in other countries as they may use a different number range for their free to call numbers. Like France uses 0805, for example.

How Do I Get A Toll Free Number?

Firstly, you need to be looking at the location that you require a toll free number in. If it’s the UK then several companies are able to supply these solutions. If you are looking for an international base of toll free numbers, you need to be looking at specialised companies like us, that have the expertise to deal with the legislations and sporadic changes that happen with international toll free numbers.

how do i get a toll free number - airport picture

All those International Choices! Where can I get? What Works?

For example, plenty of locations have a surcharge on their local toll free numbers, not having the correct facts upfront can cost you. Also, some of these numbers aren’t actually obtainable right away and do require a lead time to become available.

Then you have all the costings and rates, including redirection costs and the surcharges; previously mentioned. This is where we can advise you of these costs and provide you with a simple monthly rental and a call rate, making the process extremely easy.

Why Do I Need A Toll Free Number?

This should be the main question outside of “How do I get a toll free number?” and it’s an important one in addition to choosing the right location or number.

You can use international toll free to advertise to a countries local customers, for example. It’s quicker, cheaper and simply more efficient to get an international toll free number setup and advertised rather than spending time and resources obtaining in-country premises and staff before you have a need.

Another example could be your product is internet based and available internationally. You need to support your customers and staff in international areas. An international toll free number is a much quicker and efficient solution to open communications, than having a host of international premises.

Even if you did open offices internationally, you can centralise your phone numbers and keep them organised and configured from one location instead of through several different channels.

There are many options for toll free numbers and we can help your company with the majority of them. Our main aim is to make the process easy for you and establish a number you can use with confidence.

 

 

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