The importance of communication has increased exponentially for individuals and businesses in this modern world. In this context, small businesses in the USA might face trouble competing with big business owners with more resources. So, proper communication is essential for small businesses.
Small business owners can have proper communication through phone and online presence. But using a traditional phone system is expensive and does not provide much versatility. So, what can a small business owner in the USA do? The answer is simple; use a virtual phone number.
A virtual number, known as cloud telephony, is a phone number not tied to a physical location, line, or device. These numbers use VoIP technology and DID (Direct-inward-dialing) to make, receive, and forward the calls via the Internet.
Using a virtual phone number is one of the cheapest and most reliable ways to mark a local and international presence, scale up the business, and quickly see a drastic positive change.
So, in this article, we will discuss the best virtual phone number apps for small business owners in the USA. Let’s start.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Virtual Phone Number App
Switching your traditional phone system to a virtual phone number can be one of the best decisions for your business. However, there are many factors you need to consider before choosing a virtual phone number app. Here are some of the most critical factors:
Many virtual phone number apps and providers in the USA market provide the service at different costs. There are two types of costs in the virtual phone number apps; one is the initial cost levied during the setup. Another is the plan payment given in equal intervals.
The cost of the app and service provider depends on the features, plan, and other factors. So, determine your need and choose the app or service that fits your budget.
The call qualities of your virtual phone number, like clear and uninterrupted calls, can positively affect customers and businesses. However, if the call is faint or sharp or the connection is poor, there can lead to a poor user experience for the customers, which can negatively affect your business.
So, you must research and test before committing to a particular app or provider.
Features and Functionality
Different virtual phone number provider has different features. Research and evaluate all the providers and features.
Look for providers with basic features like call forwarding, call monitoring, call recording, voicemail, voicemail transcription, CRM integration, call analytics, SMS messaging, and tool integration.
First, choose which features are most relevant and important to your business. Then you can choose your ideal provider.
Customer Service and Support
Virtual phone number is cloud-based, so there might be instances where many network issues arise in inbound calls, like server maintenance.
If not addressed quickly and effectively, these problems can pose a huge threat to the business. A fast and online support team can alter the outcome in this case.
For instance, if the support team is not responsible, your business might lose customers through customer dissatisfaction. So, you must choose the provider with the best customer service.
Scalability and Flexibility
Scalability and flexibility are other critical criteria for choosing a virtual phone number app or a service provider.
Check out the capabilities of your app or provider to diversify your business. Look out for the tools which can be beneficial to scale your business and be used for various purposes.
Reputation and Reviews
Finally, you might also consider looking at the reputation and reviews of the apps and providers available in the market. By evaluating the comments and reviews, you can easily know which product is good and which is not.
Furthermore, you will know more about the features, customer service, technical support, pricing and plans, and other factors more easily.
Comparison of the Best Virtual Phone Number Apps for Small Business Owners in USA
You might want to consider the above-mentioned factors when choosing a virtual phone number app.
But you might be wondering that hundreds of providers and apps exist in the USA market. How can one examine the features, pricing, reviews, customer service, support, and other factors of so many providers?
Don’t worry; we have listed the best apps and providers for small businesses in the USA.
Here are the top five virtual phone number providers for small businesses in the USA market; GoogleVoice, Grasshopper, RingCentral, Nextiva, and Sideline.
|S.N.||Providers/ Brand||Major Features||Pricing|
||USD 18 per user per month|
||USD 80 per user per month|
||USD 35 per user per month|
||USD 32.95 per user per month|
||USD 9.99 per user per month|
Here is detailed information about these five apps and providers in the USA:
1. Google Voice
GoogleVoice has become the first choice for small businesses in the USA. With a competitive market price and various features, Google Voice can be one of the best options for virtual business phone numbers and the best of the best virtual for virtual business phone numbers, call apps, and providers.
This business phone system from Google is one of the finest internet phone systems available. Moreover, Google Voice is among only a few brands offering free calls and messaging within the USA and Canada. You will only need a Gmail, and yes, a free Gmail will do the trick too.
Free calls and messaging, competitive price, and many features; what more would one want?
Here are the major features and functionality of Google Voice:
- Call Blocking
- Personal greetings
- Message forwarding
- Unlimited calling (within the USA)
GoogleVoice integrates Messaging, voice, and video calls for team communication. Moreover, it is integrated with tools like Google Meet, making it one of the most versatile providers. Finally, you can also integrate Google Voice with your personal cell phone.
Pricing: USD 18 per user per month
- Competitive Price
- Automated attendants
- User-friendly interface
- Wide range of features
- Texting is limited to US customers only
- It does not offer toll-free numbers
- Availability in limited countries
Grasshopper prides itself as one of the virtual number providers for small businesses and startups in the USA market. It has a reputation for providing many features at a very reasonable price.
Besides being cost-effective, Grasshopper is very easy to set up and does not require technical hassles like time-consuming hardware programming compared to other VoIP providers.
Here are some of the significant features and functionality of Grasshopper:
- Call Forwarding
- VoIP + WiFi Calling
- Voicemail Transcription
- Virtual Receptionist
- Caller id
Grasshopper provides many integration options. Firstly, you can integrate your business phone number or phone numbers using Grasshopper with Google Voice. Moreover, you can integrate this business phone number or number with apps like Skype, your mobile phone, and mobile apps, and even your mobile phone.
Pricing: USD 80 per user per month
- Easy setup
- Competitive price
- 24/7 U.S.-based support
- Mobile and desktop apps
- Unlimited extensions on top plan
- No CRM integration
- Limited scalability
- Lacks features like call recording
- Add-ons cost is high
RingCentral is also known as an all-in-one virtual phone number provider for its versatile features. You can easily scale up your small business using this platform.
This service provider offers many VoIP and collaboration that can be helpful for businesses of any size. It is a cloud-based solution with numerous analytics and integration options.
Moreover, it boasts about being the #1 global UCaaS and CCaaS solution for every business size.
Here are some major features and functionality of RingCentral:
- Call screening
- Call recording (both incoming and outgoing calls)
- Call forwarding
- Multi-level IVR
- Live reports
- Caller id
RingCentral integrates with useful and versatile tools like Google, Microsoft, and Salesforce, mobile phone and other mobile apps.
Pricing: USD 35 per user per month
- Includes unique features available only in RingCentral
- Easy to set up and use
- Numerous integrations available
- It can be operated on mobile phones, laptops, desktops, and tablets.
- There are extra fees for add-ons
- Customer support is not the best
- features like internet faxing require an update.
Nextiva is ideal for small businesses for its functions and ability to efficiently handle complex tasks and problems.
It prides itself on one of the best user interfaces and customer service. Moreover, it integrates sales and service tools making it very versatile and functional for businesses of all sizes.
Likewise, it offers automation and analytics, which makes it easy to check efficiency, productivity, and other factors of the phone number.
Finally, Nextiva provides its service at a very reasonable price, considering the long list of features, making it one of the best choices for small businesses in the USA.
Here are some major features:
- Call recording (both incoming and outgoing calls)
- Text messages
- Offers toll-free and international numbers
- Call forwarding
It has one of the highest numbers of integrations. For instance, it integrates tools like Zoho, Hubspot, Salesforce, Zendesk, Oracle sales cloud, Microsoft Dynamics, Microsoft Outlook, Netsuite, etc.
Pricing: USD 32.95 per user per month
- Unlimited internet faxing
- Unlimited calling within the United States and Canada
- Offers free local and toll-free numbers
- Live customer support is not the best
- Not the cheapest VoIP provider in the market.
Sideline has become the second phone number of many small businesses in the USA. Thanks to its reasonable price, patented technology, Number Porting, Auto-Reply, and Voicemail, you can easily grow and scale your business using Sideline.
It is one of the few providers that prioritize safety and privacy as their top priority. It offers caller id and takes measures to reduce and eliminate spam.
Finally, it offers some integration with other tools, making them ideal for small businesses in the USA.
Here are the major features of Sideline:
- Calling and Texting (includes caller IDs, notifications, and ringtones)
- The carrier call quality from an app
- Custom voicemail
- Text messages
Sideline had Salesforce integration but removed it due to its lack of usage. However, there are tool integrations like Index.
Pricing: USD 9.99 per user per month
- One of the most affordable and reasonable prices
- Integration with many tools
- Call management features
- Mobile and desktop access
- Limited tools integration
- Add-ons might be expensive
These are some of the best virtual phone number providers and apps for small business owners in the USA.
How to Choose the Right Virtual Phone Number App for Your Small Business
Choosing the right virtual phone number app for your small business can be very difficult as many apps and service providers are already available on the market.
Almost all virtual phone number providers aim to facilitate, scale, and diversify communication. However, there are differences in the features, pricing, your need, and other various factors like call management features.
So, here are the steps to choose the best virtual phone number app for best for business phone number apps for your small business.
Determine Your Business Needs and Goals
First and foremost, you must determine the need and goals of the business, like the volume and quality of calls, number of users, and phone number requirements like a toll-free number, international number, or local number.
Likewise, you might also want to consider the features before choosing the right option.
So make sure what kinds of service you need from VoIP phones before signing up for the virtual phone number.
Research and Compare Virtual Phone Number Apps
Once you are clear about the need and goals of your business, you can look out for virtual phone number apps which meets your needs and goals.
Compare all the compatible options and choose the best one for your business.
Take Advantage of Free Trials and Demos
Most virtual phone number providers offer free trials and demos. Some demos might be for a week, while others can be as long as one month.
Try the demo for the designated days before committing to a service provider to get familiar with their product, including its features, call management services, and functionality.
Check out the free trials before you break the bank. This helps you make your business plan accordingly, which can further assist in scaling the business.
Read Reviews and Check the Reputation
Numerous providers offer virtual phone numbers and services. There are some differences in features and prices.
So, you must be careful not to purchase the plan from just any provider; instead, take some time and check the good and bad reviews. Likewise, you can compare the pros and cons.
You will likely have the best provider if you do enough research on the reviews. Likewise, always look up to the brand reputation.
This will give you an overview of the user experience, customer satisfaction, reliability, possible limitations, and other important information.
Assess Customer Service and Support
Customer service and support are vital in business scalability, customer satisfaction, and user experience.
Look for those virtual phone number providers that offer reliable customer support, including live chat, phone support, and email assistance.
Furthermore, you can check their response times during business hours and availability to their front desk phone during business hours to ensure they can assist you when needed.
Consider Integration Options
If you are using a virtual phone number for communication, there is a good chance that you will also use various tools and software.
Look out for an app that integrates with the tools and software that you already use. Integration options with customer relationship management (CRM) systems are essential in VoIP. Likewise, you can also consider team collaboration tools and other relevant software.
Best Practices for Using a Virtual Phone Number App for Your Small Business
Once you purchase any virtual phone number app or service, you should ensure you make the most of your money. Customize the features as needed, integrate the tools, and monitor and measure your performance for the best results.
– Customize Your Virtual Phone Number App to Meet Your Needs
Most, if not all, virtual phone number apps provide tools and customization options. Take full advantage of such options to have the best results in your business.
You can set up the features like call routing, customized greetings, voicemail options, and call forwarding according to your business needs and requirements.
– Integrate Your Virtual Phone Number App with Other Communication Tools
Integrate your number app with communication that will assist you in improving communication and collaboration. Integrating tools can streamline the workflow, facilitating better teamwork, customer service, and user experience.
Virtual phone number apps usually include CRM integration (Customer relationship management). You can use this integration to track and monitor the calls and analyze various data, including customer interactions which can help in better decision-making in the operations.
– Monitor and Measure Your Virtual Phone Number App Performance
Finally, monitoring and measuring your virtual business phone number, business phone, business number, and app performance is essential for making the best use of your virtual; phone number, business number, and app.
You can understand the benefit and effectiveness of your virtual phone number in your company by tracking its performance. You can follow the performance by integrating the app with various call analysis tools to monitor call volumes, durations, quality, and response times.
This will also help you track client feedback so your company can make better and more informed decisions.
Summing up, virtual phone number apps have become an inevitable part of small businesses for scalability, growth, and diversity in the USA. For a good reason, virtual phone number apps are gradually replacing the traditional phone system and landline phone numbers.
You can choose the free best virtual business phone number app from the above suggestions. However, if they don’t meet your needs and requirements, you can follow the tips and suggestions for choosing the best virtual business phone number app or provider.