Consider that it’s the customer that ultimately makes or breaks your business, it follows that you should do everything you can to open up lines of communication. Now, with the advent of VoIP (“Voice over Internet Protocol”) and cloud-computing for the telecommunications industry, it has never been easier to be accessible — and stay accessible — thanks to “virtual phone numbers.”

In this article, we’ll take a look at how businesses can use virtual phone numbers to make sure that their customers can get in contact with them.

First, What are Virtual Phone Numbers?

Virtual phone numbers are phone numbers that are identical in function and look to “normal” phone numbers. However, when they are dialed, the call is instantly routed another phone number — known as the “destination phone number.” This means that if a caller dialed an Ireland virtual phone number, that call can be routed to Dubai (and vice versa).

The Significance of Virtual Phone Numbers

Virtual phone numbers allow customers and clients to place calls (and receive calls) to reach your business without obstruction. The reason for this is many foreign service providers don’t allow long-distance calls across their service network, or they may charge long-distance fees for the ability to complete the call. With virtual phone numbers, these barriers are surmounted, as they behave in functionality to normal phone numbers in a specific region or country.

Additionally, these phone numbers are familiar to foreign markets, so your business’ localization efforts are greatly aided — something that can help businesses blend into skeptical markets. This can help customers who would otherwise only deal with “local” companies favor your brand.

Virtual phone numbers are available in a variety of types. They are available as local area numbers, as well as vanity numbers (phone numbers that are visually appealing/ spell out words or phrases) and toll free numbers. It is with toll free numbers that you make your business the most accessible and allow customers to reach your company without incurring a cost.

Opening Up Lines of Communication with Toll Free Numbers

When a customer calls a toll free number, they aren’t charged. Instead, your business — the subscriber—pays a fee to connect the call for the privilege of doing business.

The truth is that a significant portion of the world’s population doesn’t have the means of reaching businesses that don’t offer toll free numbers. This is because of their personal preferences for using limited data plans or restrictions from service providers (i.e. no long distance calling). Whatever the case may be, using toll free numbers can bridge this gap by offering a no-cost way to communicate directly with customers.

Handling International Customers with ITFS Numbers

Of course, there is a complication when it comes to using toll free numbers and reaching international markets:

When an international caller dials your domestic toll free number, they will be charged long distance fees to complete the call — or they may be blocked by their service provider from calling outside of the country.

With ITFS numbers, short for “International Toll Free Service numbers,” you can bridge the gap by allowing international clients and customers to reach your business free of charge. On the same note, ITFS numbers are essentially toll free numbers that resemble toll free numbers that a particular region/ country is used to, but they can forward the call to any destination phone number of your choice.

Add-Ons for Accessibility

While virtual phone numbers boast a wide variety of types, it’s also worthy to note that there are innumerable add-ons that you can add to your virtual phone number to make your business more accessible. For instance, you may have a limited amount of staff to handle calls — but with an add-on like “simultaneous ringing,” multiple phones can be assigned to ring so that a prospective caller never goes unanswered. Then there’s the add-on called “time of day routing,” which does just as the name implies: based on the time of day, calls can be routed to available locations. Time of day routing can make your business accessible 24/7, which is optimal for enabling your business to be reachable.

Of course, not all providers of virtual phone numbers are equal. With United World Telecom, you can ensure that your business remains accessible, with over 140 countries available to choose from and numerous add-ons. By choosing United World Telecom ( as your service provider, you can ensure that your customers can reach your business.