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Want to Grow Your Cleaning Services Business? Get a Local Phone Number Strategy That Works!

Posted by Erica Berry

May 10, 2018 10:40:47 AM

Owning your own cleaning services company is tough. Whether you have a housekeeping services business or a mobile car wash, you are in charge of buying your cleaning supplies, coordinating calendars with a constantly changing schedule, keeping your books simple and accurate, and then finding time to actually clean. But to grow your cleaning services business you also need to find new clients and retain the clients you already have.

 

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Some ways to alleviate administrative busy work include using digital services like Calendy for appointments, Amazon for supplies and Freshbooks for your finances – but something we'd like to focus on today is how to get a local phone line for your cleaning services business without the need to buy and maintain a traditional business phone system.

Virtual PBX services like Voxox Cloud Phone offer inexpensive business phone plans with professional features, including local phone numbers for the region(s) your cleaning company serves. With these local virtual numbers, you won’t need any special hardware or even an office phone because they connect directly to your cell.

Getting a local number through a virtual PBX service will help grow your cleaning services business in a few ways:

1. Handle all calls professionally.

Because all calls to your local business number are routed to your cell, you can answer on the fly or send calls to voicemail with just the touch of a button – whether you’re in the car on your way to an appointment or scrubbing a tub! Having complete control over your business’ phone communications, along with the support of a laundry list of professional features– auto attendant, call forwarding, SMS, call recording, etc. – means that your clients will always have the best possible customer service.

2. Appeal to the locals.

Using the area codes associated with the locations you serve will help build rapport with the community. People are often interested in supporting local service providers, and one way to spot a local contact is via their area code. Put these numbers on your business card, referral fliers and in local bulletins!

3. Enter new markets.

If you are actively working on expanding your carpet cleaning business to new areas, you can get a local phone number in a variety of places and reap the benefits. By expanding your service area, you’ll open yourself to more potential clients and more opportunity to grow your business. With Voxox Cloud Phone, for example, you can sign up for up to 25 different local numbers that all conveniently ring to the same phone –so you can find one, or several local numbers and neighboring area codes that fit your needs.

4. Manage your account on the go.

As a small business owner, you don’t have a lot of time to spare. So why waste those precious minutes managing two separate calling devices? With virtual PBX services (like Voxox Cloud Phone!), all calls are routed to your existing cell phone or that of your employees, as needed. You have different local phone numbers for various reasons, from tracking to marketing, but all calls end up ringing a single device. If you don't pick up, the callers are sent to a professional business voicemail, separating your personal and business communications seamlessly and efficiently. Plus, you can manage all of your virtual PBX features from your online portal – add more lines, remove numbers that you don’t need, etc. It’s simple, it’s fast and it will give you more time to focus on the things that really matter, like growing your business!

So, what are you waiting for? Go get a local phone number from a virtual PBX service and see how it can help your business grow. Set up is simple, painless and fast – but if you need help we’re here for that too.

Topics: Local Number, Business Call Routing, Business Phone Number

How Cloud Communications Helps Parents and Small Business Owners

Posted by Ron Kinkade

May 10, 2018 10:39:23 AM

As traditional gender roles continue to dissolve, mothers and fathers find themselves sharing both earning and childcare responsibilities. Looking to dispel old stereotypes of fathers solely as breadwinners, in early June, the White House held a conference to examine the changing role of working fathers in America today.

Working Parent and Child

One of the goals of the conference was to promote “extensive workplace flexibility options” that make it easier for fathers to work and help take care of young children. But while large enterprises can address this issue with organizational policies like paid parental leave, small business owners may find it a little tricky. When you own a small company or work as a sole proprietor, there might not be anyone to pick up the slack if you take off even a few days.

 A cloud communications solution, however, can help make parenthood a little easier for both mothers and fathers by helping them do business more effectively from a home office. On top of being affordable and easy to set up, a cloud-based phone system maintained over the Web provides all the business features you’d get with a traditional wire-based office system, including:

  • Reach Me Anywhere functionality that routes incoming calls to any device you choose, even if they arrive while you are cooking dinner.
  • Voicemail transcription that lets you read voicemail messages when you can’t listen because your baby is crying.
  • Web-based settings that is easy-to-adjust and accessible from anywhere you have an Internet connection, including your kid’s after-school karate class.

So if you’re a small business owner looking for a better work-life balance and a little more time with your kids, cloud communications solutions can get the job done—just like you do at work and at home every day.

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Topics: Cloud Phone, Business Phone Number

Virtual Numbers: 10 Frequently Asked Questions, Answered! (Part 1)

Posted by Erica Berry

May 10, 2018 10:36:23 AM

Virtual numbers have some powerful features that can help you convey a professional image and drum up business. From giving the impression you’re a local business in more than one region, to creating the perception of a larger corporation overall, to keeping your personal and work lines separate, virtual numbers allow you to create the type of "phone presence" that your business needs to succeed—without breaking the bank.

If you’re not savvy to all the ways virtual numbers can improve your business communications, or even what a virtual number is, read on for answers to all your burning questions…

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1. What is a virtual number?

A virtual number is a telephone number (or "DID") that is not directly associated with a calling device or telephone line. Typically, virtual numbers forward incoming calls to pre-set mobile, landline or VoIP phone numbers that are associated with specific calling devices. Business professionals can opt to have one or many virtual numbers route to a single phone or multiple phones, based on their business needs.

2. How does a virtual number work?

Once you choose your virtual numbers, you must set them to route to phone numbers that are directly linked to a calling device, such as your cell phone. The virtual number provider typically has a portal for the set-up process. With Cloud Phone, for example, this takes less than a couple of minutes to set up.

Once the virtual number is set to forward to your calling device of choice, callers will be able to reach you through that number at that device. If you don't pick up the call, they typically will be routed to a separate voicemail that you can set up with the appropriate message, based on the goals of your virtual number strategy.  Some services, like Cloud Phone, also offer voicemail transcription for virtual numbers to make retrieving voicemails as easy as possible.

3. How do I make calls from my virtual number?

It's also possible to make a call from a virtual number. Some services will allow you to dial the virtual number and then, when prompted, dial the number of the person you’d like to call. Another option that may be offered through your virtual number provider is "web call back" where you enter both numbers into a web form and the two calls are bridged together instantly to create an outgoing phone call. The recipient will see your virtual number on their caller ID – just like any other call.

4. Why do I need a virtual number?

Having a separate phone number (or numbers) for your business can be essential to maintaining a professional image, but carrying around two mobile devices or being tied to a desk just isn’t convenient or cost-effective for many types of businesses. A virtual phone number lets you stay connected on business matters, while still keeping your personal communication on the same device. Also, you can gain strategic benefits through virtual numbers. For example, when selecting numbers to represent your business, you can choose phone numbers with area codes you want to do business in to help you build relationships with customers and potential clients in those areas. You can also opt for toll free numbers if there is no regional benefit to you, but you'd like the number to be memorable and professional.

From looking bigger to appearing local, virtual numbers can give you the edge your business needs to grow. Here are some additional resources on the benefits of virtual numbers for business:

Make Your Small Business Look Bigger With Virtual Numbers

4 Reasons You May Want a Virtual Number

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Topics: Voice Communication, Industry Trends, Cloud Phone, Business Phone Number, Small Business Productivity, Improve Your Business

Virtual Phone Systems: The Perfect Tool for IT Consultants

Posted by Ian LeWinter

May 10, 2018 10:33:57 AM

Whether you are new in the field or a seasoned professional, working as an IT consultant presents a unique set of challenges. This line of work rarely conforms to a 9 to 5 schedule and because networks and computers are now an integral part of so many businesses and homes, customers seem increasingly demanding.

With this in mind, consultants need to equip themselves with the proper tools to successfully juggle the needs of all of their customers. One such tool is a small business virtual phone, which can be extraordinarily useful in helping you meet the challenges you face. Here’s how:

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Stay reachable

Whether it's a concern about costly downtime or a fear of losing important data, computer problems can evoke an incredible sense of panic from customers. These issues don’t always crop up during traditional business hours, but many times they need to be resolved quickly. With a virtual business-specific phone number, you stay reachable at all times without giving your personal cell number to clients. This is crucial to achieving a better work-life balance.

Look professional 

Projecting an aura of professionalism is critical even for small and microbusinesses with limited resources. A small business virtual phone provides the features of a legacy system—digital text greetings, extensions, auto attendants and more—without all the hardware and complexity. This way, when a new corporate prospect calls while you are busy on another job, the potential client forms a good first impression.

Conserve your cash

As any independent consultants knows, maintaining a trim budget is critical to success because company expenses come out of your pocket. Renting an office and paying for a legacy PBX system can eat away at money that would be better used on new equipment or expanding your client base. A small business virtual phone like Cloud Phone by Voxox, can help slash your overhead and boost profit.

Even for tech wizards like you, a convenient solution like a virtual phone can help you operate more efficiently and as you know, everybody needs a little help sometimes. 

Have any questions or stories? Leave a comment below or reach out to us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Google+.

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Topics: Industry Trends, Cloud Phone, Cost-Effective Solution, Business Phone Number, Small Business Productivity, Improve Your Business

Enjoying Summer Golf? A Cloud Communications App is a Hole-in-One

Posted by Ian LeWinter

May 10, 2018 10:32:41 AM

It’s Friday afternoon and the beautiful weather has you dreaming about sneaking out of the office to meet your buddies for a quick round of golf. You’re entitled to a little work-life balance; you work hard to keep your company thriving.

Cloud Communication App

But what if a critical business call comes in while you are out smacking that little white ball around? You simply can’t afford to leave your small business office without remaining reachable to clients and colleagues.

A cloud communications application lets you enjoy your afternoon round without worrying that you might be missing a crucial or message back at the office. When customers call your business-specific phone number, they are greeted by an auto attendant that presents them with menu options. If they need to speak with you directly, they simply punch in an extension—the same way they would with a wire-based enterprise system—and the call rings to your mobile device.

Additionally, a cloud communications application provides features like:

  • Business-class voicemail-to-email notification
  • Voicemail transcription
  • Instant conference calling   
  • Easily accessible and adjustable web-based settings

A cloud-based system is maintained by a third-party vendor, meaning it is inherently reliable even during storms or other disasters. Best of all, with just one low monthly service fee to pay each month, you avoid installation and maintenance costs as well.

So as you’re making pars and birdies this summer, ensure you have the tools necessary to keep your company headed straight down the fairway. Because sometimes when you sneak out of the office and onto the golf course, important business follows you right out onto the first tee.

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Topics: Voice Communication, Voxox, Auto Attendant, Mobility, Business Phone Number, Small Business Productivity, Improve Your Business

The Five 'Ds' You Need for Startup Success

Posted by Ian LeWinter

May 10, 2018 10:32:24 AM

Starting your own business can be thrilling, nerve-wracking, and terrifying—all at once. While no secret formula for guaranteed success exists, common characteristics are pervasive in many of these startups and the entrepreneurs who created them. Here are a few:

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Discipline

Most new businesses have limited resources and have to disperse them with great care. Don’t waste money printing 5,000 business cards for two employees operating a company from a living room and don’t waste cash on a complex, legacy phone system when a small business virtual phone has everything you’ll need.

Delegation

You are going to learn pretty quickly that once you have even a bit of success, it’s going to be difficult to do everything yourself. You have to be able to delegate work and trust that it will get done correctly and to do that, you have to make the right hires. Don’t skimp on background checks and the interview process  so that you can be as close to 100 percent sure about a candidate before making a commitment.

Drive

A strong work ethic is important in any job but is particularly pervasive in founders of new businesses. You have to be willing to put in some long days but also have the focus to know where your energy needs to be directed at any given time.

Dedication

It’s a near certainty that you are going to hit some hiccups as a startup and that some sacrifices will be necessary. Although the most successful startups have created billionaires, initially founders and CEOs don’t rake in the big bucks. In fact, 66 percent of Silicon Valley founders pay themselves less than $50,000 per year. But if you truly believe in what you are selling, after a few years of modest earning you may find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

‘Daptability

OK fine: We cheated a little here. But adaptability is so important we couldn’t leave it out. To achieve startup success, you have to be flexible in your approach to product development, branding strategy and pretty much anything else. No business plan goes 100 percent perfectly; the key is making sound adjustments as you go.

Have another ‘D’ that’s essential for startups? Let us know in the comment section! 

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Topics: Industry Trends, Cloud Phone, Business Phone Number, Small Business Productivity, Improve Your Business

Cloud Phone Headed to Middle East and Africa with New Partner Agreement

Posted by Natasha Grach

May 10, 2018 10:32:14 AM

Voxox announced today that Cloud Phone will be getting a big push in the Middle East and North Africa region through new partner Virtustream. As detailed in the press release, Virtustream will be working closely with operators and other service providers in the area to partner with Voxox to resell Cloud Phone under their own brands. Check out the announcement ef="http://info.voxox.com/posts/1000" target="_blank">here..

Topics: Company Announcements, Cloud Phone, Business Phone Number

4 Ways to Gauge Whether You Need a Toll Free Number

Posted by Erica Berry

May 10, 2018 10:31:39 AM

Regardless of the industry you're in, your business needs a way for customers to contact you directly. While email and online forms are convenient for some, many consumers still prefer to speak with an actual person when contacting a business. As an entrepreneur or small business owner, you may be wondering what's a better option for you -- going the local number route or the toll free number strategy. 

Many businesses have already discovered the benefits of having a toll free number, but if you're not sure if an 800 number is right for you, here are few questions to ask yourself:  

iphone-toll-free-numbers

Do you want to encourage customers to place orders over the phone?

Advertising a toll free number is an effective way to drive phone traffic because it can be easier to remember. Choosing a toll free number with a pattern or repeat numbers means people are more likely to call you, generating more sales!

Do you provide customer service via phone?

A toll free number has the perception of being customer-friendly, as the idea is to make calls free of charge for customers who want to connect with you. In the age of the mobile phone and unlimited plans, the cost savings of a toll free number isn't what is used to be, but the perception of reliable customer service is still in play here. There's nothing worse than needing help with a product or service and finding it nearly impossible to get a hold of a real person -- talk about frustrating! The toll free number is inviting and accessible, so it makes your customer feel welcome to give you a call (and more likely they are to remain a customer).

Would a higher call volume benefit your business?

Whether you sell directly over the phone, have a brick and mortar or are a consultancy, more calls generally mean more sales. A toll free number can also give the impression that you have a large operation -- providing the instant credibility you need to gain more business! 

Do you have a broad geographic customer base?

Wherever you're based, if you are able to serve customers outside your local area, a local number may be limiting. A toll free number can help you capture new markets.  

Did you answer yes to any of the questions above? If so, it may be time to take advantage of all that toll free numbers have to offer. Still have questions?  Comment below or ask us on our social networks – Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or LinkedIn.

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Topics: Cloud Phone, Business Phone Number, Toll Free Number, Small Business Productivity, Improve Your Business

Catch up to the 21st Century With a Cloud Communications

Posted by Ron Kinkade

May 10, 2018 10:31:29 AM

Cloud communications applications offer business owners unparalleled flexibility and speed in a marketplace that demands it. Delivered wirelessly through handheld devices and over the Internet, this technology brings the power and reliability of legacy phone systems squarely into the digital age and into your palm.

Legacy phone systems are expensive any way you slice them. Installations are time-consuming and pricey, repairs are frequent and downtime can be costly. Solutions like Voxox’s Cloud Phone, however, eliminate those downsides and replace them with powerful and mobile tools. See three big reasons why it's time for you to embrace this!

21st Century Technology

First, with an intuitive interface and app, there is no break in service and virtually no training necessary to bring yourself and your employees up to speed. Cloud Phone is 100 percent web-based and comes pre-configured based on your specific business needs.

Secondly, the state-of-the-art phone features include:

  • Reach Me Anywhere technology that connects incoming business calls to any location on any device 
  • An auto attendant that greets callers professionally and presents them with menu options
  • Voicemail transcription that turns voice messages into text that can be read when listening is not an option
  • Business-class voicemail that makes retrieving old messages simple and easy
  • Instant conference calling that boosts productivity and enhances collaboration

Finally, cloud communications applications’ costs are very manageable in comparison to legacy systems that can run hundreds or thousands of dollars a month. Cloud Phone has a fixed, low monthly fee and an additional maintenance or hardware costs.

Whatever your phone hurdles at present, Cloud Phone can help you clear them. Additionally, in an era of hopelessly disparate communication services and needs, Voxox can consolidate them into a single device. And that’s about as 21st century as it gets.

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Topics: Cost-Effective Solution, Business Phone Number

A Small Business Virtual Phone for Virtually Nothing!

Posted by Ron Kinkade

May 10, 2018 10:27:23 AM

It’s no coincidence that all phone commercials stress their competitive pricing, but only cloud-based phone services really provide just that.

Phone systems are an expense many businesses consider a foregone conclusion and a sunk cost. Additionally, downtime, hidden fees, and lackluster support are considered norms. But traditional providers sticking to that old-fashioned model are in for a rude awakening, because there’s a new sheriff in town—small business virtual phones.

Stack of Coins for Small Business

By offering service maintained by a host over the Internet, a small business virtual phone lets businesses slash hardware installation and maintenance expenses. Cloud technology also makes the service more reliable and less vulnerable to disasters. Better yet, the monthly fee associated with the service is peanuts!  

Small business phone service also take all the business features of a legacy enterprise system and make them accessible from the one thing professionals almost always have in front of them: their smartphones. Those features include:

  • A digital text box for customized greetings that can be adjusted quickly on the fly
  • Voicemail transcription that lets you read messages when listening isn’t an option
  • Reach Me Anywhere call forwarding that ensures you are reachable anywhere
  • Instant conference calling that facilitates better collaboration
  • A business-specific number that you can start giving to clients right away

To review, small business virtual phone systems are less expensive than legacy service, and they are feature-rich. They are easier and faster to install and more convenient to use and maintain.

Remind us: why exactly would any business want to stick with a legacy system?

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Topics: Voice Communication, Voxox, Cloud Phone, Cost-Effective Solution, Mobility, Business Phone Number, Improve Your Business