Our clients partner with us when they need a cost-effective, reliable way to provide telephone customer service around the clock.
The question is—how do they get their calls to us?
For some clients who are startups or brand new businesses, the answer is pretty simple. They don’t have a business phone number yet, so we provide them with one with their AnswerConnect account.
But for the majority of our clients, who are already in business and have an established phone number, there are two options for getting those calls to our friendly, professional virtual receptionists.
The call forwarding option
Call forwarding is pretty much what it sounds like. You pick up your phone and enter a code—something like *72, but it varies by carrier. Then you enter the number you want to forward your calls to, and your calls go to that number until you reverse the process with another code, like *73.
With call forwarding, your number is still “owned” by your current phone carrier, whether that’s Verizon, AT&T, or some other company. (This company is the number’s RespOrg, or Responsible Organization). You just forward that line to the phone number we provide you with your account.
The porting number option
Porting your phone number is different. When you port a number to us, you’re changing the RespOrg from Verizon or AT&T (or whatever carrier you use) to us.
When you port your number to us, you don’t have to pay your old carrier anymore. And you don’t have to pay us for the number either, because we give you one phone number free with your account! (Additional numbers, if you need them, are just $4.99—quite a bit less than most carriers charge.)
That means that porting your phone number to us can save you money every month. There’s no charge to port your number to us, but if you decide to port it back again, we do charge $50 to process that request. And if you want to port a number we originally provided to another carrier in the future, the charge is $250.
There are some other important things to know before you decide whether to forward your calls or port your number.
Things to know about porting your phone number
We’re not a phone carrier, so the number you port to AnswerConnect can’t be used to make outbound calls. And calls to that number will come to us every time—unlike forwarding, porting can’t be turned on and off at different times of the day. So while porting is usually cheaper than forwarding, it isn’t as versatile.
One extra advantage to porting phone numbers over forwarding is it makes troubleshooting your phone service a bit simpler. When we’re the RespOrg for your number, we can handle any problems that come up. When your phone carrier remains the RespOrg, you have to deal with them if there’s a technical glitch with your service. Porting is also a good option if your current phone number is from Google Voice. We find those numbers don’t work well with call forwarding.
We can help
As you can see, there are some pros and cons to both porting your number and forwarding your calls. But either way, your business calls will come to us, and our team of friendly, professional receptionists will help you capture more opportunity and provide great service to your callers.
Want to find out more about what AnswerConnect can do for your business? Call us at (800) 525-1315 or register here to learn about our answering service plans.