Thank you for stopping by to learn more about the best 800 number service for businesses and the benefits of having an 800 phone number. I’ve used 800 number services that forward to my cell phone for my e-commerce business and online businesses. Features and options have certainly improved since I got my first 800 number in 2011, and we have a newer 2020 article here. Check out the coupons below to save money on the service that best fits your business!
There are a number of companies that provide 800 number services for small businesses. In this article, I’ll recommend three of my favorite companies that provide 800 numbers. I’ll provide recommendations, advice, and coupons to try out their services. Please note that plan prices change frequently, so you'll find the latest information on their websites. Also, many of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means I'll receive a commission for a recommendation if you choose to go through one of my links to get a free trial or a product. This helps support my business and family, so I'd like to thank you for using a link if you decide to go with one of the services I talk about. I think each service is unique and has features and pricing that will fit all different levels of entrepreneurs. I personally have used Grasshopper and so I have the most experience with their company. However, each 800 number service has their fair share of advantages and disadvantages.
Let’s start by answering a few questions you might have. Following the questions, we’ll go more in depth on the details of each 800 number provider. Let's try to figure out the best 800 number service for your business.
Common 800 Number Questions:
How much does it cost to get an 800 Number?
You’ll find that 800 Number service providers are much more affordable than you might think. Some 800 number services like phone.com start for as little as $9.99 / month (billed annually) for a set amount of minutes. Others like Grasshopper.com start at $26 / month for UNLIMITED minutes (also billed monthly). Depending on the service, plans can be cheaper in the long run if you choose to pay all at once—that's what billed annually means. For example, for Grasshopper, it's $26/month but you pay $312 up front; if you choose to pay month to month, it's $29 each month which adds up to $348 for the year. Also, plan options change over time, so these are the updated prices of October 2020.
Is an 800 Number Free?
800 number services are not free. However, they are very affordable and will give your business the freedom to answer calls anywhere. Simply forward an 800 number to your cell phone or phone of your choice.
How do you get an 800 Phone Number?
You can get an 800 phone number by finding an 800 number provider like grasshopper.com, Phone.com, or RingCentral.com. Make sure to look for coupons like the ones on my website so you’ll get a deal or discount for the product. The process of getting an 800 number only takes about 10 minutes. Simply choose a number with an 800, 877, or 888 prefix. Purchase the number and then use the providers website to set up the number, voicemail, extensions, and forwarding to your cell phone. Some services may take more time to set up, and larger business with more employees will be more time consuming.
What are the benefits of an 800 Number?
There are many benefits to having an 800 number for your small business. I’ll share of few of the benefits I’ve experienced.
Freedom and Flexibility
An 800 number can be set up to forward to any phone. I forward my 800 number to my cell phone so I can answer a business call no matter where I am. No longer do I have to be in the office simply to answer calls. Calls can be answered no matter where I’m traveling. While on vacation, I can either send them to voicemail or to an extension of an employee.
Credibility – Sound like a national company!
An 800 number instantly gives your small business a boost of credibility. People generally think that companies with 800 numbers are more reputable and reliable. Adding extensions provides another way to sound like you have more employees or a larger team. I originally started my small online sign business out of my home. People who called in often asked where my warehouse was located, what our turnaround time was, and who would help them out with their order. They were always so surprised to find they were either talking to an owner or 1 of just a couple employees. The 800 number made us sound much bigger than we actually were.
Extensions give you the ability to forward calls to different departments or employees. You can turn your smart phone into a business line! My 800 number call greeting says:
“Thank you for calling our business and we hope you are having a great day! For sales, press 1. For customer support, press 2. To talk to Kate S, press 3. For Pete, press 4.”
You get the picture. But this can be a great way to manage calls for businesses with employees who work remotely. It’s also an excellent way to save money by forwarding calls to cell phones or land line phones that you already own.
Vanity 800 Numbers
Vanity numbers are easy to remember and can help brand your name or slogan into an 800 number. Finding the perfect vanity number isn’t easy these days with 800 numbers, but newer toll free pre-fixes like 888 and 877 can also be customized through the 800 number services. The full range is 800, 888, 877, 866, 855, 844, and 833.
800 number providers like Grasshopper also offer local numbers. So you can get a number with any area code you'd like, if you are not in the market for an 800 number.
The toll free benefit isn’t a big deal these days since long distance calling isn’t really a thing anymore. However, having the “Toll Free” benefit used to be a big deal because the caller did not have to pay a long distance fee. So this no longer is a big deal.
How does Google Voice ( a free service ) compare to an 800 Number Service?
Google voice is a cool and free service you can use to get a local phone number. I actually have a Google Voice number set up that I use for another personal phone number. I use it for Craigslist posts and for the number I give to companies whenever I buy anything or fill forms out online. It’s a cool option for a local number in any area code that will forward to your phone. However, there are not multiple extensions, 800 number options, and many of the additional features you’ll find from an 800 number service for entrepreneurs and small businesses.
Best 800 Number Service Providers
Grasshopper is a great company and I interviewed the original founder David Hauser a few years ago to learn how he started the company. He is a great guy and entrepreneur who has found a great deal of success. Grasshopper has over 300,000 customers (now 350,000 in 2020) which speaks for itself that people love it. Plus, Grasshopper has an App for your Smartphone that is super slick. You can even call and text out from the 800 number using your smart phone. You’ll know if a call is coming into your business number so you can answer it differently than you would with a personal call.
Overview of pricing
Grasshopper's pricing plan starts at $26 / month and has unlimited minutes, if you pay for the full year up front (“billed annually”). The more expensive plans will give you multiple 800 numbers and a greater number of extensions. $26 / month is a very affordable option to get all the benefits of an 800 number service! In 2018, Grasshopper did not used to offer a deal for being billed annually, but now they do, in 2020.
2018 Grasshopper pricing above
Grasshopper.com key Points
- Plans offered all include unlimited minutes. Some other companies have plans that show a cheaper introductory rate, but you’ll be charged for extra minutes and can quickly surpass the rates of Grasshopper.
- Voicemail Reading / Transcription Included
- Business Texting
- NO LONG TERM CONTRACTS (unless you choose Billed Annually, for one year at a time)
- Awesome iPhone and Android Smartphone App
- $75 Off Coupon for Think Entrepreneurship Readers
2018 Grasshopper Coupon Code (still works in 2020)
ThinkEntrepreneurship.com readers will get $75 off Grasshopper services. This will cover your first few months of service depending on the plan you sign up for. It’s like getting two months for free, or having a long trial period. Comment below the post to let me know you used it or found success with it! If you have any issues with the coupon please let me know and shoot me a message via the contact page. Sometimes you may need to open a new browser (like Safari, Mozilla, Internet Explorer, etc., if it doesn’t work right away.
Phone.com has been in business for a number of years and has a top notch reputation. I have a few friends who have used phone.com and they have told me they are very happy with it. After diving into the backend and learning more about it, I've found it to be another competitive option with excellent features.
Overview of pricing
Phone.com has both Pay Per Minute Plans and Unlimited Plans. You will get a better rate if you purchase Phone.com with one annual payment vs monthly payments. At $12.99 / month you'll get 300 minutes. However, once the 300 minutes are up you'll pay extra for each minute. This can add up rather quickly. The prices for Base and Plus plans are still the same in 2020, but the Pro plan has gone down by $10 from what it was in 2018.
Unlimited plans are going to be the best bang for your buck in my experience.
- Phone.com offers pay per minute plans that start with 300 minutes. You’ll pay extra for each additional minute
- Phone.com offers unlimited plans as well.
- No long term commitments
- Great customer service
- Smart Phone App
Ring Central is yet another great option when it comes to 800 number service providers. While any size business can use RingCentral, I've seen it as a more popular service for larger businesses. RingCentral has some robust features that work real well for large teams.
Overview of pricing
Ring Central.com's plans all include unlimited minutes. The price will vary depending on if you pay monthly or annually. The price also varies depending on the number of users. Prices are fairly in line with the other companies, but they do offer some additional features that can increase the price. The first two graphics below are the updated 2020 pricing, the other three are from 2018, comparison.
Paying monthly will cost around $10 extra per month. Paying annually is the way to go if you use Ring Central.
The difference in this chart is if you need to have additional users. The cost in this chart is per user.
Google Voice Review
Google voice is a good way to have an additional personal phone number with any area code. They do not offer 800 numbers and do not have the additional business services of the 800 number service providers. I use a Google Voice number as the phone number listed when I post things on Craigslist or when I fill out forms online. I've seen a few one person businesses use Google voice. It can work and may for a while. If you are just getting started this is certainly an option to have a phone number forward to your cell phone. You can get a number in just about any area code. I found that I quickly outgrew this option for my business and switched over to an 800 number service provider.
Smart Phone App Ratings
All 800 number service providers mentioned in this post have great reviews and solid reputations. I chose to write about these companies because I've either used their services or have seen how positive their reviews have been over the years. In my experience, Grasshopper is an excellent choice for entrepreneurs who need unlimited minutes and don't want to pay annually. The smartphone App is super slick and the highest rated of the companies mentioned in this review. Phone.com has very affordable pricing as well and is well known in the world of 800 number services. While their App rating isn't as positive, it may be because it is newer and still working out bugs. Ring Central has been around for a long time and larger businesses seem to rave about it. Google Voice is an option for someone getting started. It is free to get a local number, but they do not offer 800 numbers. So what is the best 800 number service for your business? That's for your to decide. I've used Grasshopper since 2011 and have been very happy with their service, features, and App. Please do your research and choose the best fit for you!
Please comment below if you found this review helpful or if you used any of the coupons to help with your purchase. Remember that plans and options change frequently, so use the links above to check out their latest pricing. You can check out my Resources page for other software and tool recommendations for entrepreneurs. Best of luck and cheers from Montana!