We’ve come a long way in phone technology in the past two decades – from the once-revolutionary Blackberry, which some people called Palm Pilots (even though that was a totally different thing altogether) and allowed you to answer emails, all the way to the smartphones of today – which can do practically anything.
Want to manage your business’ invoices through your phone, or check to make sure that you closed your garage door? With the right apps, you can do both.
It’s no surprise that over the course of the past two decades businesses have begun to drift from conventional phone systems. Before the era of smartphones, everyone was pretty much glued to their desks from 9-5 with traditional phone systems. If you wanted to make a call, it had to be right there.
Once smartphones started rolling in, it wasn’t uncommon to see big companies springing for iPhones for their entire staff, requiring each team member to carry around and keep up with two phones – personal and professional – to manage incoming calls, chat apps, and email accounts.
Now, though, we’re seeing another shift, as businesses are moving from purchasing smartphones for their staff, to setting them up with virtual phone numbers instead. This is more convenient for their staff, wildly cost-effective for the bottom line, and it offers distinct perks and features that may have cost more with some smartphone plans (if they were offered at all).
Have we piqued your interest yet? If so, keep reading to find out why virtual phone numbers are the way to go in 2019, and how to start the transition for your business.
What Is a Virtual Business Phone Line?
A virtual business line (also sometimes called a “virtual phone number”) is a real phone number that can make and receive calls through smartphones. The catch, however, is that the phone line itself isn’t actually tied to a specific phone. Instead, it’s operated through a mobile app that can be accessed on any compatible smartphone.
If you were to have a business phone line with a company like Verizon, for example, you’d need to also purchase a phone from them that’s directly tied to that business line. With a virtual phone number like Tresta, all you need to do is install our mobile app on a phone that you already have. You need to purchase the line, but not a new phone, and you don’t need to keep up with two different devices and remember to check them both. This saves businesses a significant amount of money, especially when they need to create phone lines for everyone on their team.
Why Should I Make the Switch?
We’ve already covered two of the biggest reasons that virtual phone lines are so appealing (they’re more convenient and money-saving), but there are other great perks to consider, too.
Virtual phone numbers like Tresta’s come with a number of great features through the mobile and web app, and ours come at no additional charge. These features include:
- Auto attendants
- Advanced call analytics
- Call recording
- Scheduled call routing, either to a different number or even an answering service
- Custom greetings
- Call menus
- Cloud-based voicemail
These features are all native to the app, making them easy to use even if you aren’t particularly tech-savvy. It’s now easier than ever to set up call routing for an employee going on vacation so that all customers are taken care of, or to create custom greetings to create a branded experience for your customers from start to finish.
How to Transition From Traditional to Virtual Phone Lines
Ready to move from traditional to virtual phone lines? Let’s go step by step through the process. (And good news: There are only three simple steps!)
1. Decide What Features You Need For Your Business
When you’re getting ready to make the switch, it’s important to decide which features you want and need in a virtual phone number.
In many cases, you’ll want to find a mobile app that’s compatible with both iOS and Android devices, like Tresta. The last thing you need is to create virtual phone numbers for an entire team when half can’t use them because of incompatible devices.
You may also want other features, like integrated call routing, call scheduling, custom greetings, or auto attendants. Make sure that you’re choosing a provider that can offer all this and more, because you want to choose the right provider the first time around.
2. Choose If You Want to Port Current Numbers Or Create New Ones
Once you’ve selected a virtual phone line provider, you’ll need to decide if you want to stick with the phone numbers your team already has or create new ones.
You can port the current numbers that your team is already using on their traditional phone lines into the virtual line, giving you the advantage of still being reachable at the numbers your customers and vendors already have saved in their phones.
Providers like Tresta make this easy, and it typically takes just af few business days for the full transition to happen. You can learn more about how to do this here.
We’ve also found that some businesses would rather start from scratch. This may be the case if their phone numbers were added at different times and seem disjointed, or if they want to switch from local numbers to toll-free, or vice versa. If you’re looking to switch up your numbers for whatever reason, this is the time to do so.
3. Start Your Free Trial With Tresta
Once you’ve decided what numbers you want to use and have selected a provider, it’s time to get things moving. Most quality providers will offer a free trial so you can make sure that the virtual phone system is the right one for you. The best part is that there’s no need to involve network admins or phone system experts in the set up. Everything is quick and easy to manage on Tresta’s web app. You can add users, phone numbers, extensions, and set up all of your call management features online.
Take advantage of Tresta’s 30-day free trial so that you can make sure that your greetings, menus, voicemail boxes, schedules and routing are all set up just how you want them. Utilize the full scope of the features that you expect to use, and make sure it’s the right tool for you.
Increasing numbers of businesses are transitioning from traditional to virtual phone systems, especially as remote work increases. Whether your team is mostly remote, or constantly on the move, or even if they’re mostly in-office, virtual phone systems keep your entire staff connected and able to do their jobs well, all while saving you money.
With the transition being so simple and with free trials available from the best phone providers, there’s no reason not to give it a shot and see how it works for you.
Interested in starting your free 30-day trial with Tresta? Sign up here today.