SOUTH AFRICA Virtual Phone Numbers

Do you want your clients in South Africa to feel as if they’re dialing a business in the same town or country? A Cape Town, Durban, East London, or Johannesburg virtual phone number will do just that.

Cape Town South AfricaAccording to South Africa’s Institute of Export, South Africa’s combination of a First World economic infrastructure and a vibrant emerging market economy make it a sophisticated and promising market.

The Institute of Export also reports that South Africa has been making tremendous strides since 1994 toward becoming a major contributor to international markets. If you plan on doing business in South Africa, one excellent step forward that you can make is to order South Africa virtual phone numbers.

What Can a South Africa Virtual Phone Number Do for Your Business?

While you’ll obviously need South Africa virtual numbers once your business has officially been launched, we recommend getting your virtual numbers as soon as possible. The cost is minimal, yet the benefits robust.

For example, by giving your local business partners a local South Africa virtual phone number to reach you, you are sending a signal to them that you are serious about working with them on their turf.

Your virtual phone number makes it appear as though you already have an office in South Africa.

How You Can Use Virtual Phone Numbers in South Africa

There are several use cases for virtual phone numbers. A few include the following:

  • Using virtual phone numbers to establish a local business presence. Do you want your clients in South Africa to feel as if they’re dialing a business in the same town or country? A Cape Town, Durban, East London, or Johannesburg virtual phone number will do just that. If you prefer to use a toll free number for South Africa, you can order a toll free virtual number as well.
  • Using virtual phone numbers to look more professional. Your South Africa virtual phone number can help a smaller business appear larger or more professional — especially if you opt for a toll free virtual number. Our virtual numbers include valuable features that help build your credibility such as simultaneous ringing, sequential ringing, automated voice response systems, auto attendants, advanced routing, and more.
  • Using virtual phone numbers to make cheap international phone calls. While you may have a South Africa virtual phone number in order to help your local business partners or customers reach you internationally, you could also occasionally use it to make cheap international phone calls while visiting the country. For example, if you’re closing a deal in South Africa but need to call home, you could change the ring to number so that it rings to your home phone then dial the South Africa virtual number. This connects your call to your home phone, allowing you to avoid your hotel’s hefty connection and international long distances fees. Instead, you’ll pay your regular low per minute rates for your South Africa virtual phone number.

Our South Africa virtual phone numbers are offered on a no contract basis. Whether you need a temporary South Africa virtual phone number while you explore the market or intend to keep it for the long term, you’ll find that our plans are both affordable and scalable — and they’re loaded with the advanced features you need.

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How Small Businesses Can Use International Virtual Numbers in the United States

Virtual Numbers US InternationalIf you currently have remote call forwarding numbers within the United States, you already have an understanding of how beneficial call forwarding numbers are. However, did you know that you can use USA virtual numbers around the world?

If you’re in the United States but do business overseas, one of the smartest — and most affordable — investments you can make is in an international virtual number. USA virtual numbers can be created for dozens of countries but set up so that they ring to your office in the US.

How Can You Use USA Virtual Numbers?

Establishing a local presence in an offshore country is one of several ways that businesses in the United States use virtual numbers. For example, let’s say that you run a small web development agency in the United States and would like to begin offering your services in an emerging country such as Brazil. Instead of renting office space in Brazil, getting a landline, and staffing your Brazilian office, you could simply get a local virtual phone number (or a toll free one) for Brazil and set your ring-to destination to your USA phone. To your customers in Brazil, your USA virtual number looks local, eliminating cost concerns immediately and helping to generate more calls.

Another way you could use a USA virtual number is to set up a toll free hotline with a recording. In countries with limited Internet access, getting information isn’t as easy as we’re accustomed to. If you provide informational services, you could create a recording directly from within your USA virtual numbers account and set up your auto voice response system accordingly. From there, publish the toll free number in the target country and begin sharing your message.

If you travel frequently, you could use your USA virtual numbers when visiting your target markets. For instance, if you’ve already set up a virtual number for Brazil and will be spending a few weeks touring factories and networking with local business contacts, you could make cheap phone calls back home by setting up the ring-to number so that it rings to the appropriate person in the USA. From there, dial your virtual number and connect with your US-based contacts. You’ll get your same low international call forwarding rates and be able to dial a toll free number when in Brazil. If you use your USA virtual numbers to make cheap international calls, make sure to change your ring-to number back to the desired phone number when you’re done.

Whether you want to expand your market, better serve international customers, or make cheap international calls, getting a USA virtual number is a great way to do so. Test the waters by signing up for an affordable, month-to-month plan with no contract.

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Should You Use One or Two Toll Free Belgium Virtual Phone Numbers to Accommodate Language Differences?

By using two Belgium virtual numbers, your customers will be immediately connected to a customer service representative who speaks the predominant language.

Antwerp BelgiumBelgium is an interesting European country whose population is divided into two main groups: the Dutch-speaking Flemish community and the French-speaking Walloon community.

Because of these language differences, establishing either one or two toll free Belgium virtual phone numbers may make sense for your business.

Why Use Two Toll Free Belgium Virtual Phone Numbers Instead of One?

When you establish a toll free virtual phone number in a country other than your own, it’s smart to set the destination “ring to” number to a specific phone line in your call center or office. That way, all calls coming from your virtual phone number in Belgium can be routed to a specific customer service representative who speaks the language and is familiar with the country’s nuances and business etiquette.

However, when you have callers from Belgium, you’ll need both French-speaking and Dutch-speaking representatives to field those calls. Having individual Belgium virtual phone numbers for the north (where Dutch is primarily spoken) and south (where French prevails) is one of the more efficient ways to divert the calls to the correct customer service representative.

Using Just One Belgium Virtual Phone Number

Having two Belgium virtual phone numbers does add some complexity to your marketing strategy as you’ll need to ensure that the appropriate virtual phone number is advertised in the appropriate geographical regions.

If you’d rather keep it simple with just one toll free virtual phone number for Belgium, you can definitely do so. Use the voice response system to prompt callers to select their language preferences. When callers who speak French call your Belgium toll free virtual phone number, they’ll be able to press “1” or “2” (depending on how you set up the IVR system) to be connected to a French-speaking agent. The same is true of callers who speak Dutch.

Which Option is the Best Option?

It’s ultimate up to you to decide which option makes the most sense for your business. Since there are two distinct language differences between the north and the south, you’d likely need to publish your marketing materials in different languages anyway. Having separate numbers for the north and south shouldn’t cause too much confusion amongst your marketing personnel.

The cost difference between maintaining one or two individual toll free virtual numbers for Belgium is minimal as you essentially pay by the minute.

Think about the customer experience as you decide. By using two Belgium virtual numbers, your customers will be immediately connected to a customer service representative who speaks the predominant language. This is more welcoming than an automated prompt, and it feels more local.

Which option would you choose?

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Establishing a Local Presence with a Uruguay Virtual Number

View from Artigas Hill in MInas, Lavalleja, UruguayWith roughly 3.3 million people as of 2013 estimates and consistently gaining attention as one of the world’s fastest developing nations, establishing a local presence in Uruguay could be a smart move. One of the best ways to tap into this market is with a Uruguay virtual number.

Why Set Up a Uruguay Virtual Number?
Uruguay is a representative democratic republic with a freely elected president – and a growing, free market economy. Its economy has an export-heavy agricultural sector with soybeans, horse meat, greasy wool, and beeswax among its main exports.

The Port of Montevideo handles well over 1 million containers each year, and Uruguay has the one of the most developed telecommunications systems in Latin America.

Setting up a Uruguay virtual number allows your business to appear as if it is operating inside of Uruguay. It’s a low-cost way to get started in the Uruguay marketplace.

For example, if you offer import/export consulting services to the agriculture industry, having a local Uruguay virtual phone number would allow your clients in Uruguay to call you directly using a phone number that makes it appear as though your office is just down the street. Your clients may feel more comfortable working with someone with a local presence – and they’ll appreciate being able to dial a local or toll free phone number.

How Your Uruguay Virtual Number Works
When you get a local or toll free Uruguay virtual phone number, you are getting what’s known as a remote call forward number. The number itself is local to Uruguay so callers do not need to be concerned about international calling costs. The Uruguay virtual number, however, rings to the phone line of your choice – and your “ring to” phone can be located virtually anywhere in the world.

For example, you could set up your Uruguay virtual number to ring to:

  • An office phone in New York
  • A call center in Madrid
  • A mobile phone in Tel Aviv

The options are practically unlimited! In fact, you can change the ring to number as your needs change or even program a different destination based on the time of day it is in Uruguay.

Virtual Uruguay phone numbers come with a variety of features and options such as auto attendant, time of day forwarding, local ringtones, rollover minutes, and more. You can even set up an optional call recording feature where all of your calls from your Uruguay virtual number are automatically recorded.

If you’ve been considering a move into the Uruguay market, getting a virtual number is an excellent way to establish a local presence and begin communicating with callers in the country. Ordering a Uruguay virtual number is easy and affordable. Select your new Uruguay virtual phone number now.

What do you think?

We’d love to hear about your experiences. How have you used virtual phone numbers in Uruguay or other nations?

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5 Common Misconceptions About Global Virtual Numbers

If you have customers in another country, it makes sense to provide them with a toll free number to reach you.

Global Virtual NumbersIf you work with customers around the world, global virtual numbers are a fantastic way to facilitate communications. As beneficial as global virtual numbers are to businesses of all sizes, several misconceptions exist and may be holding you back. Let’s bust them once and for all…

1. Global Toll Free Numbers are Expensive – As with any toll free number, the owner of a global toll free number is the one who pays all costs associated with each phone call. The fact that callers are calling from other countries makes many potential account holders anxious. After all, aren’t international long distance rates sky high? Not necessarily. A number of affordable global toll free calling plans are available with rates that may surprise you.

2. Global Toll Free Numbers Are Only Beneficial to Big Companies – While large companies with offices around the globe tend to come to mind when thinking about global toll free numbers, they’re not the only ones who benefit by providing international customers with an easy and toll free way to call. Even solo professionals such as independent business consultants and home-based business owners can benefit from a global toll free phone number. If you have customers in another country, it makes sense to provide them with a toll free number to reach you.

3. You Need a Fancy Phone System to Use Global Virtual Phone Numbers – Not true whatsoever. In fact, the calling features (such as unlimited auto attendants, advanced call forwarding, customized greeting, fax forwarding, voicemail to email, and more) that come with Global Virtual Numbers’ toll free global phone numbers make it seem as though you have a fancy PBX. All you need is a phone to accept your incoming calls.

4. You Need a Call Center to Handle International Virtual Phone Numbers – Obviously, if you have a high call volume, you’d likely need some sort of call center and staff to effectively handle those calls. That said, having a call center is not a requirement for using international virtual numbers. You can set up your international toll free number to ring to a single phone, simultaneously ring to multiple phones, ring to voicemail, and more.

5. You Need to Commit for Years or Else Pay Substantial Penalties – Times have changed in the highly competitive telecommunications industry. Today, it’s possible to get global toll free phone numbers on a no-contract, no-early-termination-fees basis. Whether you want to test market your services in another country, have a temporary need, or simply prefer to go month-to-month, there’s no long term commitment when you choose a Global Virtual Numbers plan.

Have these misconceptions been holding you back? Order a no-contract global virtual number today and start enjoying the benefits in a matter of minutes.

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10 Ways to Use Global Call Forwarding

Use global call forwarding numbers to appear larger and more capable.

10 Ways to Use Global Call ForwardingGlobal call forwarding using virtual phone numbers can be used in a variety of ways, allowing you to connect with international friends, family, colleagues, partners, and customers using a single virtual phone number. Below are 10 ways to use global call forwarding to connect with others around the globe.

1. Use a global call forwarding number to keep in touch with family members living abroad. If you have family members living in another country with high international calling costs, consider ordering a global call forwarding number that’s local to that country. Once established, your family members would dial a local phone number that forwards to the destination number in your country. You would pay a fixed per minute price that’s typically much lower than the host country’s rates.

2. Using a virtual number to stay connected when traveling the world. If you travel around the world, you could order a global call forwarding number that’s local to your home country and give that number to your family, friends, and colleagues to call.

As you move from one country to the next, simply change your ring-to number to your new local phone. Your contacts back home would dial a local or toll free number and you’d pay a low per minute rate.

3. Set up shop in another country. Want to start offering products and services overseas? Instead of setting up a physical location in another country, consider setting up a virtual location with an international call forwarding number. Your customers would dial a local phone number to reach you no matter where in the world you actually are.

4. Use a global call forwarding phone number to receive international faxes. Instead of maintaining separate international phone and fax lines, sign up for a global call forwarding number with a fax-to-email feature. Whenever someone needs to send you a fax from that country, they’d simply fax the document to you using the call forwarding number. You’d then receive an email containing a PDF of the faxed document. Not only does this eliminate the need for a separate phone line, it also means that you can get rid of your fax machine and its ongoing expenses.

5. Use global call forwarding numbers to appear larger and more capable. If you would like your business to appear larger, ordering several virtual phone numbers can instantly give your business an international boost.

6. Use virtual numbers to establish yourself in a given country. Are you headed to an international conference where you have the potential to close business deals with partners around the world? Consider establishing global call forwarding numbers in your target countries and then print up business cards with your new phone numbers. Your prospects will likely feel confident calling you from their home countries thanks to your local presence.

7. Use global call forwarding to avoid costly international roaming rates. When traveling internationally, your mobile phone may or may not work at your destination. Even if it does work, you could be faced with sky-high international roaming rates. A better option is to order a global call forwarding number and then buy a disposable cell phone at your destination. You can then designate your new mobile phone as the ring-to number and receive your calls no matter where you go.

8. Use global call forwarding to control when and where you receive international phone calls. International call forwarding plans typically allow you to change the destination phone number on the fly. In addition, many plans have a “time of day” routing feature where you can preprogram how calls are handled based on the time of day they are made. For example, if you do not want to be disturbed between 6:00PM and 5:00AM local time, you can configure your phone number to route any calls between those hours to voicemail.

9. Use global call forwarding in an international call center. Global call forwarding numbers can be routed to an international call center where you can have customer service agents available to handle incoming calls. If you have multiple call forwarding numbers, you may want to route calls to specific agents based on country codes. Similarly, you can route calls to different call centers based on time of day.

10. Use global call forwarding to reduce international calling costs. With low international calling rates and the ability to switch ring-to numbers on the fly, many people have found that global call forwarding is a cost-effective way to make international long distance calls. Rather than dialing directly, you can change your ring-to number to the number you’d like to call and then dial your global call forwarding number. This bypasses the traditional system, puts you on your call forwarding provider’s network, and gives you access to low per minute international calling rates for dozens of countries around the world.

Global call forwarding is a versatile solution to a number of international calling scenarios.

How will you use your global call forwarding number?

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Virtual Numbers for Startups and Small Businesses

After all, some callers won’t think twice about calling you at all hours. By giving callers your virtual number, they can call you 24/7 yet you won’t necessarily have to hear the phone ring while you’re trying to sleep or spend quality time with your family.

Virtual Numbers for Startups and Small BusinessesStartups and small businesses need to be accessible, yet they often run on a tight budget. Virtual numbers allow entrepreneurs, startups, and small business owners to receive phone calls professionally without the expense of a PBX system. Not only that, virtual numbers are highly portable.

Whether you need to work out of a temporary location at first before moving into your office, your virtual numbers can follow you wherever you may go – and your callers will never be aware of your movements.

How Virtual Numbers Work

Virtual phone numbers are essentially call forwarding numbers that are not associated with any given phone line or device. You can order virtual numbers with specific country and area codes so that they are “local” to a given region. For instance, you could order a virtual phone number for Los Angeles and another for Ireland and then set both of those numbers to ring to your New York apartment.

People in LA would see a familiar area code and think that they’re calling your Los Angeles office. At the same time, your contacts in Ireland would see a familiar local number and feel confident dialing your Ireland office without any concerns about paying international long distance charges.

As the account holder of those numbers, you would pay your virtual call forwarding service provider for each minute of service. Depending on the plan, you’d likely pay different rates based on the country of origin. Virtual numbers are quite similar to toll free numbers both in terms of how they work and how they are billed.

With a virtual number, you have complete control over the destination phone number. You can change this number at any time online. If you plan on working at the local coffee house for a few hours, you could change the ring-to number to your cell phone.

When you return to your home office, you could then change the ring-to number to your home office phone. Similarly, if you need to leave the country, you could change the ring-to number to your hotel room or temporary office space.  Meanwhile, your callers will not notice any disruptions because they can reach you as they normally do.

Virtual numbers are available for locations around the world. In addition to domestic and international virtual phone numbers, you can also get toll free virtual phone numbers if desired.

Benefits of Using Virtual Numbers for Your Startup or Small Business

Using virtual numbers can deliver several important benefits for startups and small businesses. Below are just a few to spark your imagination:

  • They can help you compete with “local” bidders. If you’re bidding on a project in another city or country, decision makers may have a preference for doing business with local companies. Getting a local call forwarding number, even if it’s just for short-term use as part of the bidding process, can give your business a local credibility boost.
  • Easy split testing. Use different virtual numbers to split test your advertisements and landing pages. Which phone number receives the most calls? Which phone number generates the most sales?
  • Look bigger. While your startup may be excelling despite the fact that you’re running it out of your garage, you may not want to appear as though you’re working out of your garage. By establishing a toll free number and a few virtual numbers in major cities, you can instantly appear to be a larger company. Many virtual number service plans include auto attendant, music on hold, and multiple mailbox features that can also help your company to look bigger than it currently is.
  • Protect your privacy. As an entrepreneur, you need to be readily accessible, but you may not want to give out your personal mobile phone number or home phone number. After all, some callers won’t think twice about calling you at all hours. By giving callers your virtual number, they can call you 24/7 yet you won’t necessarily have to hear the phone ring while you’re trying to sleep or spend quality time with your family. You decide when to accept calls from your virtual number and when to send them to voicemail or to an assistant.

Virtual numbers are ideal for startups and small businesses alike. With one or more virtual numbers, you can immediately establish your business in a given community as well as appear bigger than you are.

You can also move from one location to another, control where those calls go, compete with local bidders, test your ads, and maintain your privacy. Best of all, you can get virtual numbers on a pay-as-you-go basis with no contract or minimum usage requirements.

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Become More Flexible with Global Call Forwarding

At the same time, you could establish several international forwarding numbers in countries around the world and have them ring to your call center.

Become More Flexible with Global Call Forwarding
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Whether you run a small business or an enterprise organization, global call forwarding can help you become more flexible and agile.

With global call forwarding, you have several options. For example, you could establish a virtual number that follows you no matter where in the world you may happen to be.

At the same time, you could establish several international forwarding numbers in countries around the world and have them ring to your call center.

Imagine the possibilities! Below are just a few examples of how your company can take advantage of global call forwarding.

Using Global Call Forwarding to Stay in Touch Globally

As an individual who travels frequently, you may want to check into using global call forwarding as a means of staying in touch with employees, clients, and family members back home when you travel overseas. As you know, your cell phone doesn’t always work in  other countries, and when it does, international roaming rates make accepting calls from people back home an expensive proposition.

Many business travels find it cheaper to buy a disposable mobile phone once they arrive in a country but that brings problems of its own. For example, you need to inform everyone that you have a new number for them to call if they need to reach you when you’re in that country. Since the phone number is local to the country you’re in, your contacts will face international long distance charges should they need to call you. Plus, once you dispose of that phone, you’ll need to tell your contacts that that phone number is no longer valid.

With global call forwarding, you establish a local phone number within your own country (or a toll free one depending on your preferences). You can keep this virtual number indefinitely. The beauty of global call forwarding is that you can change the “ring to” number on the fly. When you purchase a disposable mobile phone in a new country, you simply switch the global call forwarding number’s ring to number to your new mobile phone. You do not need to inform your contacts. They simply dial the same number they always dial. Since the virtual number is local to your own country, your in-country employees, clients, and family members do not need to worry about international dialing costs.

Meanwhile, if you use a reliable, low-cost global call forwarding service, the rates that you are charged will be far more affordable than international roaming rates. In fact, you can view per minute rates for each country you frequently visit before you sign up for a plan.

Using Global Call Forwarding to Establish an International Presence

Another way to use global call forwarding for your business is to establish local phone numbers in the countries that you serve and then have those calls diverted to your call center or main office. To customers in various countries, the phone numbers are completely local. They may even feel as though they’re dialing a business across town thanks to the way the number appears and even the sound of the ringtone. However, the phone will ring to your designated number whether it’s in the same country or not. This provides your business with a flexible alternative to setting up physical locations around the world.

Using Global Call Forwarding to Route Calls by Time of Day

Using Global Call Forwarding to Route Calls by Time of DayHaving a global call forwarding number in a different country does bring with it one challenge: global time differences. However, those differences can be dealt with using time of day routing. For example, if a caller calls you during local business hours, how do you want the call handled if it’s the middle of the night your time?

With time of day routing, you can send calls to a live answering service, call center, or voicemail based on the time of day calls take place. Since callers don’t expect to be helped after business hours, you could send those after hours calls to voicemail as expected or, if those calls occur during your normal business hours, you could exceed expectations by handling those calls in real time.

Time of day routing is a flexible feature that allows you greater control over how incoming calls are routed based on the time of day they occur.

Global call forwarding is a convenient, low-cost choice for businesses of all sizes. Whether you’re a globetrotting executive who needs to stay in touch at all times, a mid-sized business owner who wants to make it easy for international customers to reach your office without investing in a physical location, or a call center manager who needs to staff a call center to handle incoming calls around the clock, global call forwarding can help you become more flexible.

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5 Ways to Use Virtual Numbers for Business

Many business owners prefer that local callers use their main number instead of their toll free numbers due to costs.

Need to expand access to your business globally or locally?

Virtual numbers are a special type of phone number. Because they are “virtual,” these numbers can ring to any phone that you choose worldwide.5 Ways to Use Virtual Numbers for Business

They do not need to be installed at your office or permanently associated with a local or mobile phone number. In fact, you can change a virtual number’s ring-to number as often as you’d like – in real-time.

This flexibility makes virtual numbers extremely portable and beneficial to businesses. Here are five ways (of many) that you can use virtual numbers in your business.

1. Use virtual numbers to test advertising

As you know, advertising is expensive. It is imperative to find out which ads work and which ones don’t. One way to do this is to use a unique virtual phone number with each advertisement. From there, you can look at each number’s activities to see which advertisements are resulting in actual phone calls.

Advertising Results

In addition to looking at the total number of calls each advertisement generates, consider the duration of the calls. Six-second calls, for example, are likely hang-ups whereas five minute calls may indicate a closed sale.

While your phone records can provide robust insights into the performance of each ad, it’s also smart to have your customer service representatives source each sale. With some services, it’s possible to set up incoming calls from virtual numbers to display the virtual number in the caller ID field.

2. Use virtual numbers to create a local presence in a distant city or country

If your business is physically located in Miami, Florida, it makes sense to have a local number as well as a toll free number for your business. Callers from other cities and states would most likely opt to use your toll free number when calling your main office. However, what if you specifically serve cities outside of Miami such as Orlando, Florida or Los Angeles, California? You could get virtual numbers for those cities and then route the calls to your Miami office. By establishing local phone numbers in the cities that you serve, your business instantly appears to be a local company. This strategy can be applied internationally as well. Simply order international virtual numbers and use global call forwarding to route those calls to your main office.

3. Use virtual numbers to ensure you never lose your “main” number due to an office move

Publishing your main office number allows local callers to call your business directly. Many business owners prefer that local callers use their main number instead of their toll free numbers due to costs. However, if you have to move your office, you could lose your main phone number. When that happens, you will have to either re-do all of your advertising, stationary, business cards, and invoices so that they have your new phone number or pay the phone company the going rate to forward your calls to your new number. By using virtual numbers from the beginning, you can keep your “main” number regardless of where your office is located. In fact, you can switch your main office on the fly if so desired. For example, if you want to work from home one day and then work from the office the next, you could instantly switch the ring-to number to ring to your physical location.

4. Use virtual numbers to receive calls on your mobile phone while keeping your mobile phone number private.

If you need to be accessible occasionally but hesitate to give out your cell phone number due to concerns about people calling your cell phone 24/7, consider using a virtual number. When you need to accept calls on the go, you could route the virtual number to your mobile phone without having to give out your private phone number. This is a great way to ensure availability when it’s warranted without being subjected to intrusive calls on your cell phone when it’s not. When you are not on call or when you want to have uninterrupted family time, you can route your virtual number to your assistant, voicemail, an answering service, or some other alternative.

5. Use virtual numbers to control international calling costs.

Since you can change the virtual number’s destination number to any phone number in the world, consider using your virtual number when making an international phone call. Of course, you’ll want to compare per minute rates to make sure that using your virtual number is the cheaper option. In many cases, it will be, especially if you have an international virtual number plan with low per minute rates. When the time comes to make the international call, simply change the ring-to number to the number of the person you need to call. From there, dial your virtual phone number. After the call, make sure to change the ring-to number back to your regular ring-to number or voicemail.

These are but a few of the many ways you can use virtual phone numbers for your business. Test advertising,

Additional ways to benefit with Virtual Numbers

Global Virtual Numbers International Call Center

International Call Center
International Call Center

Global Virtual Numbers and the International Call Center

Running a call center is challenging enough; add global virtual numbers to the mix and it becomes even more complicated. However, this challenge can be solved with an understanding of how global virtual numbers work and the right staff.

It’s important to understand how global virtual numbers work so that you can plan accordingly. These numbers are call forwarding numbers assigned to various countries around the world. They appear “local” to callers in these countries, yet they ring to a call center located somewhere else. For example, a caller in the United States may dial a traditional 1-800 number at 2:30 PM and be connected to a customer service representative in Singapore where it’s 5:30 in the morning.

In this example, the international call center in Singapore would need to have a team of customer service representatives who are fluent in English. Because of the time differences between the two countries, this team would need to work an unusual shift. After all, callers in the United States expect someone to answer phone calls during business hours. Not only must the call center have English-speaking staff available, it needs to be in tune with local time in the U.S.

To further complicate matters, international call centers often answer calls from other global virtual numbers. If our theoretical call center in Singapore also handles callers from the United Kingdom, Australia, and Russia, it will need English and Russian-speaking customer service representatives available during those countries’ business hours.

In addition to accommodating callers through staffing, the technology that powers global virtual numbers also has a role to play.

For example, callers who call at 9:00 PM local time do not generally expect a live person to answer the phone. In fact, many prefer to call afterhours so that they can simply leave a voicemail message and receive a callback the next day with answers. A feature called “time of day routing” can control how calls are routed based on the time of day it is in the originating country. The call center manager could set each global call forwarding number to ring to the call center during local business hours and then to voicemail afterhours. From there, appropriate staffing levels could be determined around these schedules. In addition, global virtual phone numbers can be set to emit a “local” ringtone so that callers hear the traditional ringing sound that their country’s phone system uses.

Global virtual numbers

Makes it possible for a single call center to handle calls from around the world, around the clock. Once you understand what calls are coming in, from where, and when, you can then staff the call center with the right people at the right time to handle those calls.

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Rollover Minutes and Call Forwarding Plans

Virtual Number - Rollover Minutes
Virtual Number – Rollover Minutes

Rollover Minutes and Call Forwarding Plans

Thinking about ordering a local, toll free, or international call forwarding plan? If so, one of the options you may want to consider is whether or not the call forwarding plan includes rollover minutes. A rollover minutes option, if available, can provide you with even more flexibility.

What are Rollover Minutes?

You’re likely familiar with the rollover minutes concept thanks to similar offers on long distance and cell phones. Many calling plans, including domestic and international call forwarding plans, are offered in packages where you pay for a pre-determined amount of minutes each month. If you exceed that value, you must pay for the additional minutes you use, often at a slightly higher rate than your bundled minutes. If you do not use up all of your minutes, you generally lose them.

How Not Having Rollover Minutes Costs You Money

For example, let’s say that you have a call forwarding plan with 900 minutes per month. In January, you only use 500 of those minutes. You will have paid for 900 minutes but only used 500 of them. In essences, you’ve overpaid for your usage. Now let’s see what happens in February when you use 1200 minutes. 900 of those minutes will have been included in your call forwarding plan, but you will need to pay for 300 additional minutes at a slightly higher per minute rate.

In this example, not only did you overpay for minutes in January, you had to buy additional minutes in February. If you had a rollover plan, you would have been able to save those unused minutes from January and used them in February. Not only would you be money ahead, you’d still have rollover minutes left to use in March, April, or several months from now. Minutes from each month that you are under your allotment would rollover, allowing you greater flexibility over your call forwarding usage.

Is Adding Rollover Minutes to a Call Forwarding Plan Financially Smart?

Adding rollover minutes to your international call forwarding plan is typically optional and offered for a small monthly fee which could be anywhere from $5 a month to $15 or more per month depending on your plan. In order to determine whether or not this option makes sense for you, you’ll need to examine your usage patterns and do the math.

For example, does your usage fluctuate from month to month or is it fairly stable? If you routinely use just under 200 minutes each month, then AI Telephone’s “Preferred” plan (222 minutes) with no rollover minutes might be suitable.

On the other hand, if your usage goes up and down dramatically each month, being able to “bank” your unused minutes makes a great deal of sense. Once you decide that the rollover option is a possible fit, look at the per month rate for the feature. Will you get more value out of using banked minutes than the fee or does it make more sense to forfeit your unused minutes and pay for overages? Do the math based on your anticipated usage. You’ll likely find that opting for rollover minutes is the financially smarter choice.

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How to Receive Mobile Calls when Traveling Overseas

Get your mobile calls overseas
Get your mobile calls overseas

How to Receive Mobile Calls when Traveling Overseas this Summer

Summer has arrived and the world awaits! Unfortunately, if you’re traveling from the U.S. to an international destination this summer, your trusty cell phone won’t necessarily work unless you use some sort of international or toll free call divert. While there’s something to be said for being completely disconnected while on vacation, being able to receive emergency calls is important. If you’re traveling on business, being disconnected from the office is not an option.

Most of us take our cell phones for granted and expect them to work no matter where we are. Once we cross international lines, however, nothing is guaranteed. Even if your phone works, international roaming charges could be an unexpected – and costly – surprise. Fortunately, a low-cost solution exists that allows you to receive your mobile phone calls in countries around the world: international call forwarding.

You’re likely familiar with domestic call forwarding, right? For example, depending on your cellular service provider’s calling features, to set your iPhone to ring to your home number, you simply go to Settings > Phone > Call Forwarding and enter your home phone number. Whenever someone dials your iPhone number, the call rings to your home phone.

International call forwarding works in a similar manner. If you’re thinking you can simply change your mobile phone’s settings to ring to an international number as illustrated in the example above, think again. This technique only works domestically. You will need an international call forwarding service to accomplish this task. Don’t worry, it’s not hard but it does require some planning.

  • First, make sure your mobile phone has a call forwarding feature (not all do). If you can call forward calls from your mobile to your home number, then your phone is properly equipped. If it is not equipped with call forwarding, you may be able to change that via your online account dashboard or with a quick call to your provider.
  • Next, you will need to order a domestic call forwarding number from a service provider. If you’re in the United States, for example, you’ll need a U.S. call forwarding number. This is the number that you will forward your mobile calls to. This step is crucial because in most cases you can’t forward mobile calls to an international phone number directly. Even if you could, the costs would be prohibitive.
  • Once you have your domestic call forwarding virtual number, you will need to configure it so that it forwards to the ring-to number in the country you will be visiting. This number could be your hotel, a disposable cell phone you buy in that country, your local business office in that country and so on.
  • At the same time, you will need to configure your cell phone to ring to your new domestic virtual phone number. Once all configurations have been made, anytime someone dials your U.S. cell phone number, the call will be routed first to your new virtual number and then to your ring-to number overseas.

The same method will work regardless of where your home country is.  Simply get a virtual number in your country.  Call forward your mobile phone to ring to the mobile or hotel, etc, at your travel destination.

This process allows your local contacts to reach you overseas without requiring them to do anything different. You will incur costs for the call forwarding, making it important to choose a low-cost international call forwarding service. Because quality is equally important, you’ll also want to choose a provider that uses traditional telephone networks rather than Internet-based routing. Another useful feature to look for is time of day routing, especially if time differences are significant.

Don’t let your overseas travel plans keep you disconnected. Explore your international call forwarding options today!

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Localize Your Business with Virtual Phone Numbers

Virtual number call forwarding
Virtual number

Whether you run a regional business or a global one, appearances matter – especially to locals. Having a local phone number immediately reassures potential customers that your company is legitimate and ready to help. What they may not realize is that while yes, you are legitimate and ready to serve, your business may be located thousands of miles away. With virtual phone numbers, you can appear local yet receive phone calls virtually anywhere.

How Virtual Numbers Work

Virtual numbers are a form of call forwarding. Many companies use virtual phone numbers as way of creating a local presence without having to maintain a physical office in the desired country or city. For example, if your business is located in Idaho and you’d like to serve customers in Beverly Hills, you could order and advertise a Beverly Hills phone number. When prospective customers in the Beverly Hills area dial that virtual phone number, the call will ring to your office in Idaho.

With a virtual number, callers are able to reach your business wherever it is located by dialing what appears to be a local phone number. If callers call from within the same local calling area, no toll charges will appear on their telephone bills. As the owner of the virtual phone number, you will pay the charges associated with forwarding the call to your designated ring-to number. This is similar to owning a toll free number in that you, the virtual phone number account holder, pay for the cost of the calls.

The Benefits of Virtual Phone Numbers

Localization is one of the primary reasons businesses use virtual call forwarding numbers. However, the benefits of having a virtual phone number extend far beyond appearances. For example, virtual numbers allow you to enter new markets without the need to rent space and staff an office.

Even if you have an office nearby, you may want to use virtual numbers in specific communities in order to make it as convenient as possible for your customers to contact you. For instance, if you serve communities located in different area codes, having a local phone number alleviates customer concerns about paying long distance fees. While you could solve that problem with a toll free number, doing so gives the illusion that your company may not be local at all.

Virtual phone numbers are also beneficial if you want to take advantage of less expensive office space in a neighboring city. For example, if you want to provide mobile service to clients in Beverly Hills, you may find office space there to be cost-prohibitive. Meanwhile, rents may be much more affordable in a different Los Angeles city. However, the phone prefix, and in some cases, the area code, will be obviously different. With a virtual Beverly Hills number, you can create the upscale presence you want with minimal fuss and low costs.

Virtual numbers are portable

Whether you need to change the ‘ring-to’ number due to staffing issues, travel, or a permanent office move, you can keep your virtual number and forward it to any number in the world as needed. Your callers will never know the difference. To them, your office is just a phone call away.

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International Call Forwarding Kenya Toll Free

International Call Forwarding Kenya

Kenya Toll Free number - Map of KenyaKenya Toll Free numbers are now available. This enables the caller located in Kenya to dial a local Kenya Toll Free number and connect to any other phone number, worldwide.

Companies that have customers located in Kenya can now offer their Kenya callers a Toll Free method to make contact without the caller incurring international long distance charges from Kenya.  All charges are applied to the Global Call Forwarding account owner.

For example, if you have customers located in Kenya or have associates located in Kenya, but you are located in another country, a local Kenya Toll Free number that forwards the calls to your phone location, would be the method of choice.  It’s a strategy to create a local phone presence in another country.  So you could be located in India, South Africa, UK, USA and have a Toll Free number specific to Kenya send all of the calls to your phone in any country you choose.

A further example – Assume you have a main office location in South Africa and you need to create an easy method for callers located inside Kenya to call your main office without the caller incurring fees.  A Kenya Toll Free number would be the solution.

Virtual number call forwarding-The Bridge to stay connected with clients

Whether you have your business or want to stay connected with your relatives, friends or beloved ones there is a constant need to find communication mediums that are cost-effective, convenient and which connect better. And the thing that has made it possible for millions of people around the globe is the technological innovations and advancements that have taken place in the past decade or so. Technology has made the world a small place because no matter where you live and what your geographical position is? You are never far away from people who matters to you.

The services that have seen a great contribution from technological innovations in the recent years is the communication services. Today communication services have made it possible for people to stay connected with people all over the world. The part of communication services that has enhanced the chances of businesses to expand and go beyond the national boundaries to make their presence felt on the international platform is the telephone services. This is the reason that individuals and businesses are utilizing these services to cater their clients, partners and relatives sitting in various part of the world. Telephone services like call forwarding service and virtual number call forwarding are in continuous demand by businesses and individuals because they are a great source of communicating around the globe.

Today businesses have grown big and thus they need mediums through which they can have a proper co-ordination and message delivery network within their organization. It is indeed necessary for businesses around the world to have a sound communication system because any misinterpretation or a wrong message delivery can prove fatal to companies and organizations.

Virtual number call forwarding services enables its user to connect to their clients with different nationalities without the need of showing original number. In this the user takes an international toll free number for a particular country from where he wants to acquire clients and when the client makes a call he is not charged with premium international rates and thus the client feels that the business has a local presence.

Call forwarding service reduces the cost of setting up a local office in various countries to cater clients. These services have greatly influenced businesses to make their presence felt local to clients without having the need for a local setup and thus helping businesses to grow and prosper.