What is a vanity phone number?
A vanity phone number is one that spells out a word or phrase, and can be used for business purposes. It’s especially good for marketing.
For example, instead of something like “555-2777” you might want to go with something like “555-XYZ-Plumbing” to suit your busienss. Vanity phone numbers can be great for many different reasons.
If you run a business and you want to give your customers a positive impression, having a vanity phone number that matches the business name can be an effective way to do it.
Keep reading to find out how you can use a vanity phone number to grow your reputation.
Speaking of reputation, Signpost is used by thousands of small service businesses to build a trusted online reputation with reviews. Let us show you how our review software works.
When to Get a Vanity Phone Number
Although vanity numbers are not as important as a website or social media accounts, it’s another way to set yourself apart from the competition when making your business accessible to customers.
If you own a small business, you might have considered getting a vanity phone number but weren’t sure if it was worth the investment. Here are some scenarios that indicate it’s the right time for your business to get a vanity phone number:
Solid branding for your business. The vanity number will help your customers better remember your business, which means they’re more likely to reach out when they need your service.
To keep your identity solidified. If you’ve been in business for a while and your company is well-known by your clients, using your company name as a phone number will let them know you’re legit and give them confidence in your brand.
For more flexibility and variety. When you get a vanity number, you can choose any area code in the US—it doesn’t have to be one that corresponds with the location of your business. This means that instead of being limited to local numbers, you could get an 800-number or even an international number.
For more convenient customer services. If you’ve got a company phone line where people call to get information about your products or services, it might make sense to create a second line that’s used for a different purpose so that people have another way of contacting you directly in addition to whatever automated systems you already use.
Alternatives to a Vanity Phone Number
While vanity phone numbers can be a great way to boost your business, they’re not right for everyone. If that’s something you’re unsure of pursuing, here are some alternatives:
Building a strong online presence: Having a presence is crucial if you want your customers to find you. It gives people a place to learn about you and what you’re about, and it allows them to contact you outside of business hours. It’s also an effective way to gather reviews, that can help to build your reputation and establish credibility.
Focusing on gathering and managing reviews. Reviews are valuable as people check them before making a purchase or patronizing your business. By focusing on building relationships with your customers and encouraging them to leave reviews, you’ll make sure to turn every visit into a positive one.
Gaining referrals through word of mouth. A small local business could get clients through recommendations from friends and family, while larger companies can create incentives or rewards for employees who refer new customers or bring in new business contracts.
Implementing a text marketing phone number. Because their message is brief, concise, easy to read (even on a small screen), text messages are an ideal marketing tool for businesses with small budgets who need to reach people quickly at low cost. It’s easier for businesses to share information via text as the customer is more likely to view it (rather than leaving a voicemail or being ignored by the customer altogether).
Check out Signpost’s text message marketing service today!
What to Look For in a Vanity Phone Number Provider
Maybe you’re just getting started with vanity phone numbers and have no idea about the important factors to consider. Don’t worry, here’s everything you should keep in mind:
Pricing is always a relevant factor when choosing any service, and a vanity phone number is no different.
While different providers have different pricing structures, there are some factors that can make one provider more expensive than another.
Some of these factors include whether the provider will give you a list of available numbers to select from, how many numbers are included in the package, and whether or not there are additional costs for each number you may want.
Other providers provide unlimited minutes per month but come paired with a higher monthly fee, and vice versa with others. International calling numbers will also have different pricing rates assigned, depending on the country.
Toll-free number options
A toll-free number is an important feature that can help your business stand out from the competition, and a vanity phone number (or virtual phone number) can be a great way to get one.
By choosing a toll-free number, it will be easy for people to call you. You won’t need to share your cell phone number or incur long-distance charges just in case someone wants to contact you for business purposes.
Most cloud phone system providers offer extensive calling features for users. These include the basic ones like call routing, voicemail and WiFi-enabled calls.
Other call features to keep in mind include:
SMS text messaging services
Call history records
Missed call notifications
The features you’re looking for can depend on your vanity number phone calls usecase. For example, if you’re keen on having a vanity number to separate business calls from personal use, CRM integrations or connectivity to your Google account or Google workspace may be a more significant factor.
Number control and security
When getting a new number, you must ask yourself, “How easy will it be for someone else to get my vanity number once I put it out there? And what happens if someone does?”
You want to make sure you don’t run the risk of a port-out scamming scheme, where criminals can get in touch with your vanity number provider and steal it by transferring it to another service.
Make sure your providers have security features like two-factor authentication enabled for your mobile phone and other devices so this doesn’t happen to you.
Vanity Phone Number Providers
If you’re scouring the internet for a vanity number service provider, you might realize this service comes hand-in-hand with many business phone system providers. In addition to call forwarding and VOIP, a lot of cloud-based phone service providers provide vanity mobile numbers for customers.
It can be confusing to find the one best for you, but here’s a run-down of the best contenders to get you started:
Grasshopper is a great fit for small businesses made up of small teams, looking for a provider that’s easy to onboard with.
Grasshopper offers a plethora of features for businesses to use including:
Language assistance for bilingual callers
Automated text messaging
Grasshopper provides local and toll-free number options. You can even give the vanity number a whirl for free during the free trial. However, it’s worth noting that it provides only 800-888 type vanity numbers—no local or international options.
Check Grasshopper’s services out here.
Want to serve customers on incoming calls a professionally recorded greeting that sets them off on the right foot for your communications? eVoice lets you do one for free.
Its top features include:
Custom greetings for calls
Simultaneous ring options
Live receptionist (auto-attendant) available
It offers local, toll-free and international options for its users and is one of the most affordable providers on this list, offering the lowest per-user price with unlimited calls. The option to add your own recorded message for free is great too, enabling better personalization on your customer support. However, the user interface is clunky and if you want to unlock more features, they come as add-ons which raise the price.
Check out eVoice’s services here.
RingCentral is one of the leading providers for vanity numbers in the market, due to its personalization options combined with an integrated communications platform for its users.
RingCentral offers the following features:
Local, toll-free and international numbers
Voicemail to text translations
International call forwarding
Though on the more expensive end compared to other providers on this list, RingCentral is highly rated for its customization options plus international vanity phone number availability. It also has a user-friendly interface on both desktop and mobile apps. However, vanity numbers are provided as an add-on feature at nearly $5 per month (with a $30 setup fee when added to any plan).
Check RingCentral’s services out here.
If you’re a small business looking for a mix of local and toll-free vanity numbers with customizable plans, Phone.com might be right for you.
Its top features include:
Mix and match plans
HD voice calls
Provision of call analytics
It offers local, toll-free and international numbers, rivalling RingCentral’s offerings. It’s also comparatively priced better as the premium plans in Phone.com cost around the same as the entry-level tiers for other proviers. However, the app for mobile devices doesn’t have as friendly as an interface and could use improvement.
Check out Phone.com’s services here.
If you’re keen on nabbing a 1-800 prefix for your vanity phone number without the extra fees for additional call management services, 800.com is worth checking out.
Its top features include:
Automated text replies
Call recording option available for all plans
Dedicted fax number for all plans
With 800.com, you get local and toll-free numbers, but not international ones. It has an online vanity number which allows you to find ‘true’ 1-800 numbers. You can also get access to some of the advanced features without cashing out too much into the top plans. However, the interface on the mobile app isn’t as user-friendly. It also does not offer video conferencing features at this time.
Check out 800.com’s services here.
Use Signpost to connect with customers about your business
Whether you’re a local business or a major corporation, you have to give customers reasons to remember your company. A vanity phone number is one way to do that and customer reviews are another.
We can help your business through our text marketing platform that can send automated text messages to your customers at any time, on topics ranging from customer service issues, new launches, and even service appointment reminders.
If you need review management software for your business without the headache, Signpost is a cost-effective solution. Request a demo today.