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Gone are the days of signing up for a business phone service and being given random digits. In the past, traditional telephone carriers made it difficult and expensive to choose a custom number. Today with VoIP, it’s easier than ever to choose a new phone number for your business. Now, you can find phone numbers online, meaning you don’t even have to pick up the phone. 

You may be familiar with custom numbers for personal use. For example, there are apps that provide customers options for new virtual phone numbers, allowing them to make local calls from wherever they are, even if they’re out of the country. They can buy phone numbers for any area code or country code they require. 

A business phone number that’s easy to remember improves your credibility and brand recognition. But how do you go about buying a specific phone number?

Below, we will discuss:

Types of custom phone numbers

Dial pad of a mobile phone

A custom telephone number is available through many VoIP service providers such as RingCentral. The first step you need to take before purchasing a phone number is deciding what type of custom phone number you want. You want to consider what you and your customers need in your business number.

Toll-free numbers

A Toll-free phone number allows your customers to call you free of charge. You can choose phone numbers between the following prefixes:

  • 800
  • 877 
  • 866
  • 855
  • 844
Mobile phone interface showing how to search for a toll-free vanity number

Vanity numbers

Vanity phone numbers are custom numbers that are easy to remember and act as an effective marketing strategy. These numbers use a word or phrase that customers enter into their keypad after a local or toll-free prefix (also known as vanity toll-free numbers). 

For example, you may have heard of 1-800-FLOWERS. This is a business phone number that’s easy to remember and could give your business better brand recognition and higher conversions. It tells your customers who you are, what you do, and how to contact you. Whether you choose a toll-free or local vanity phone number, you will start on the path to higher conversions.

Easy dial phone numbers

Another way to make a memorable phone number is with easy dial numbers, which are available with toll-free and local prefixes. These are easy for your customers to remember and make it easy to market your contact details to prospects. 

For example, if you’re a small business that only operates in your local area, you may opt for a local number. This may look like (612) 555-5555.

If you’re a business with regional offices, you may decide to use the same number with different area codes to reflect each office. For example, one office may have the number (712) 555-5555, while another has (906) 555-5555. 

Calls can be routed to one location through a local phone number. This means you can have a single call center managing calls for multiple locations.

Why buy a custom phone number?

A custom phone number has a wide range of benefits for your business. You can leverage all the benefits of VoIP and create a surefire way to connect with your potential and existing customers. Consider the following reasons you need a custom phone number:

1. It creates a professional image.

Your business has instant credibility with any of the custom phone number types. Toll-free, easy dial, and vanity phone numbers show that you took the time to create your professional image all the way down to your contact details.

2. It strengthens your brand.

Especially with toll-free vanity phone numbers, you are strengthening your brand image. Your customers will not only recognize you by your business name but also by its number. Strengthening your brand is an important step in building a more successful business.

3. It encourages connection.

Memorable phone numbers encourage customers and prospects to contact you. The more convenient you make it for them to reach you, the more likely they are to reach out. With a virtual phone number, you can even reach people with free international calling.

It also makes your team reachable wherever, whenever. You no longer need to give out your mobile number to take a business call when you’re not in the office. Using a virtual number means you can make and receive calls directly to your mobile phone. You can also utilize SMS text messaging and other channels for an omnichannel communication strategy.

4. It has all the advanced features of VoIP.  

VoIP phones have emerged victorious over traditional phone lines. With landlines, you’re pretty much limited to standard features like caller ID. You’re also at the mercy of the long-distance and international calling rates of a traditional phone company.

With VoIP phone service providers, you can leverage all the best features like:

  • Voicemail transcription 
  • SMS text messages
  • Phone number porting
  • Auto attendant
  • Call forwarding
  • Click to call
  • Call recording
  • Video conferencing

How to buy a custom number with RingCentral

Customer dialing a company’s local phone number on his way home

With RingCentral, you have access to one of the largest databases for custom phone numbers. As a RingCentral customer, you can easily port your existing numbers or add a new number directly from your account. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Log in to your RingCentral online account.
  2. Go to the Home page.
  3. Click on Phone Number > Add Number.
  4. Under Number Type, Select Vanity, International, Toll-free, or Local. 
  5. Once you have chosen a number, click Add Numbers, then click Next.
  6. Now assign where the number will be routed before clicking Next.

Assigning your routing options allows you to send the calls to an:

  • Auto-receptionist - This uses IVR to route your calls to the appropriate team member. 
  • Extension - You can have the number added as a direct number to a selected extension.

Pricing and setup fees

Getting custom phone numbers is more affordable than ever. With RingCentral, there’s a one-time setup fee of $30 plus taxes, which will be billed to your account once you decide on a new number. Then, you just have to pay a small subscription fee in order to own your number.

FAQ

Do I need a separate cell phone number for my mobile device?

Not at all! You can use your virtual number to get all your business phone calls to your personal cell phone via the RingCentral mobile app. There’s no need to charge and carry around two separate devices.

How long does activation take on my new number?

Your new number will be activated in five business days as long as:
  • RingCentral was able to reserve the number for you (a number can be reserved by other telecom carriers as well). 
  • Your account is in an active and paid subscription.

Why do I need to go on a paid subscription before my vanity phone number gets charged and activated?

You won’t be able to have ownership of the number until you have a paid subscription.

Conclusion

Now that you know how to buy a specific phone number, look into the best option for your company. Make a number based on your business name or an easy dial toll-free number. No matter what you decide on, know that RingCentral is here for you, with the most effective call management tools and the largest database of custom phone numbers. 

And with our business phone system, you get advanced features alongside top-notch customer service. Call forwarding, call recording, auto attendant, custom numbers instead of random digits, even functionality like video conferencing—imagine a phone system with all the bells and whistles and a customer service team you can rely on in case something goes wrong.

If you want to learn more, watch our demo or talk to our team today!
Important details and disclaimers
SMB Holiday Promotion:

*Void where prohibited or restricted. Offer valid until December 31, 2021. Discounts based upon list price published prior to Offer start date. Free Month(s) Conditions subject to the quantity of years purchased under qualifying RingCentral MVP plans purchased, and between 2 and 399 digital lines required. Additional Terms and Conditions apply.