With more than 17 years of experience as a leading provider of virtual phone numbers, AVOXI helps customers determine what type of virtual number best suits their business need—no matter where in the world they’re located. We also walk through and address questions about how much a virtual phone number costs, and what you can expect to pay for virtual phone number service.
What Are Virtual Phone Numbers?
First, it’s important to understand what a virtual number is and the types of virtual numbers available. We use the terms VoIP and Virtual interchangeably, but there are some differences. Primarily, virtual numbers come with a cloud PBX system that offers business-class calling features and services. This is an important distinction as some providers charge extra for add-on features. To better understand, see AVOXI’s article, “VoIP vs Virtual: What’s the Difference, and Why Should I Care?”
Select the Type of Virtual Number You Need
Next, you want to identify what type of virtual number works for your business: international toll free, local (DID, DDI), domestic toll free, vanity toll free, or global toll free. AVOXI’s number guide can help you decide what type of number fits your requirements. Basically, you identify from where your customers or prospects call you. Is it from targeted cities or regions or is it within a country?
For example, let’s say you have a business located in the UK, and you want customers in Hamburg, Germany to reach you easily without incurring charges on their phone bill. Set up a local (DID) number in Hamburg. If you want to establish a presence throughout Germany, select a German international toll free number. The inbound calls route to your location in the UK. The type of virtual phone number you use affects the cost of that number.
What Does a Virtual Number Cost?
Many virtual number providers provide services as a monthly recurring charge plus usage. That means, you pay a monthly subscription for the service plus a per minute rate on the usage. It’s important when selecting a provider that you review the features included with your monthly subscription. Some features are “add-ons” and are only available at an additional monthly charge. Several providers offer bundled services and usage—offering a package that includes a designated number of minutes. Bundled packages help you keep a consist budget for calls if you know what volume you generally have.
Virtual Number Costs: Quick Overview
- Monthly Subscription - $4.99 to $9.99
- Per Minute Usage Rate - US $.01 to $.05 per minute
- Feature Add Ons:
- $1.99 to $6.99 for Call Recording and $.03 per minute recorded
- IVR Set Up - $50 to 150 one time fee
- Customized Menu Greetings - $25 to $200 one time fee
Costs for a Local Phone Number
Reviewing some provider examples gives you an idea on what cost to expect virtual numbers that are local or DID phone numbers. Let’s look at what Grasshopper offers as a local number example for Las Vegas, Nevada. The recommended or “most popular” plan is $49 (USD) per month and includes 3 numbers and 6 extensions along with select features that include voicemail, custom greetings, and inbound fax. (Source: Grasshopper website – 02 April 2018; the offer only applies to new Grasshopper customers.) The unlimited minutes fall under Grasshopper’s “reasonable use policy” that defines normal business usage.
Looking at another provider, TollfreeForwarding.com, you can purchase a Las Vegas number for $9.00 per month in the Starter package of 430 minutes. That means you can get three numbers for $27 per month. Tollfreeforwarding.com charges a per minute rate for any overage. Also, call forwarding restrictions apply for most selections—allowing forwarding to landlines only at the prices offered.
Local number pricing (DID or DDI) varies by country. And each virtual number provider structures pricing differently. Using the Las Vegas example, AVOXI offers a bundled package for local virtual numbers at $7.99 per month. In addition, AVOXI has a Business Classic offering that provides service for $4.49 per month plus usage charged at $.04 per minute.
Using the local number examples for Las Vegas, price bundles for 3 lines vary from $23.97 to $49 (USD) per month.
Costs for an International Toll Free Virtual Number
Let’s look at an example showing price ranges for international toll free numbers. If you want a toll free number in the UK that forwards to a SIP (IP) address, Tollfreeforwarding.com offers a package of 789 minutes (most popular plan) for $79 per month. Additional minutes are $.093 when forwarding to most landlines.
A comparative example is AVOXI’s bundled offering at 790 minutes for $61.99 per month. Additional minutes are $.084 when forwarding to VoIP/SIP. So, costs range from $61.99 to $79 per month. Looking at the examples shows why it’s important to comparison shop when you decide what type of virtual number you want. You can also discuss your specific need with your provider.
Determine the Best Fit for Your Business
The type of virtual number, the number of lines you need, the features you require, and the call forwarding service you want all factor into the overall cost.
To learn more about virtual phone numbers and what works best for your business, check out these additional articles:
Want to check out costs? Use the pricing tool to view costs for your virtual number requirements.
If you have questions, talk to a VoIP Specialist about the right number type and associated costs based on your business needs.