Prepare to Get Your 855 Numbers. Educate Yourself First.

Discussion and speculation about the new 855 toll free area codes is growing as anticipation rises. Ever since we heard that there appears to have been a formal recommendation to the FCC f the release of the new 855 toll free area code numbers, there has been some information circulating that conflicts with other info making the rounds. But no matter the details, it is time for consumers to learn how to obtain their own custom 855 number as soon as the pool becomes available. Potential subscribers should contact a reputable toll free service provider and learn how to prepare to get a new custom 855 toll free phone number.

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Perhaps a Virtual Office is What You Need

When starting a new company, there are many decisions to be made on communications, advertising, marketing, and customer service. Toll free phone service combined with virtual office systems streamlines management needs and reduces communications costs. With a toll free phone system that mimics corporate phone set-ups, any small business can have comprehensive telephone connections without having to install any new equipment or purchase new set-ups. We are finding that virtual office systems are becoming more and more popular, especially as companies attempt to keep their staff costs down.

The FCC’s Role In Toll Free, Simplified

Although we have discussed this on this site previously, it seems there are still some misunderstandings about the FCC’s role in toll free practice. The FCC does not play a role in the assignment of numbers to subscribers, however they do regulate the guidelines under which 1-800 numbers can be used and obtained. For instance, the hoarding and warehousing of numbers is prohibited and punishable with severe fines—recently illustrated by a citation for an $11,000 fine each day a California company continued to implement improper toll free practices. Numbers are assigned by toll free carriers and phone companies.

A Recession-Proof Tool

Many news reports on how to succeed in the business world during a recession are providing advice that we here in the telecommunications industry have long known—that the value of a 1-800 number cannot be underestimated. A toll free number lends credibility to any business, enhances customer service, and increases customer confidence. Studies show that sales can double and word of mouth referrals can increase by as much as 200% making toll free service indispensible for all types of business.

LucyPhone APP For Toll Free

Have you heard about the LucyPhone APP? With LucyPhone, you’ll see a comprehensive list of companies with 1-800 numbers; ranging from retails services, utilities, airlines and hotels, etc. If the business is located in the United States or Canada and has toll free telephone number, you’ll likely find it on this list. If it’s not, don’t worry; you can enter in toll-free numbers on your own, too. After choosing the company you need to contact, you’ll enter in your phone number and hit the call button. “Lucy” will call the number and it will ring back to you whenever a service rep answers. LucyPhone only works with toll free phone numbers.

Is a Virtual Office More in Line with Your Business?

When getting a full service toll free/virtual office system, advise your clients to carefully consider the options. For instance, they should think carefully before getting the type of automated system that may turn off potential customers. These systems can be effective for some types of businesses: but they can be a detriment for many others. Consider whether an automated system matches a company’s image. If they do decide to go with an IVR system, buying one instead of renting one typically makes more financial sense.

The Emerging Black Market

In recent years, the limited availability of new toll free numbers has created an intense and competitive demand for valuable 800, 888, 877 and 866 numbers. Following the emergence of a black market for these numbers, sources say federal authorities are cracking down on illegal toll free practices, including reports of attempts to sell or lease numbers off eBay. Let’s hope so.
With depleted supplies leading to a growth of illegal hoarding and leasing practices, experts say it is imperative that subscribers be informed on the proper acquisition and use of toll free numbers. Its incumbent upon the FCC and telecommunications companies to educate subscribers.