Should you use an 03 phone number for business?

Why should you consider an 03 phone number for business? Running a business means you’re already making a lot of decisions a lot of the time. And each decisions requires you to weigh up different factors. You’re balancing costs, time, demands on your employees, maintaining your brand, and – probably most importantly – customer experience and satisfaction. One key part of providing all-important excellent customer service is ensuring your company is reachable. These days, that’s easily achievable. There are loads of different tools to facilitate customer communication. From chatbots to social media DMs, you’re probably always a few short clicks away. But there are situations which need vocalised conversation. Phone lines are indispensable for businesses. And here you face yet another decision. What phone number should you pick? Here, we help clarify your decision by looking at the pros and cons of having an 03 phone number for business.

Do businesses need any phone number?

Sure, Artificial Intelligence is making its mark on business communication, and automation is a buzz word in customer service. But the the fact is, phones are going to be around for a while. And phone calls remain vital for providing the best possible customer service. There are situations which require actual spoken words. And there are people who will always prefer a phone call to typed messaging no matter what the channel.

And think outside of inbound customer communications. Phone calls are a great way to stay in touch with shareholders and investors, employees and colleagues. For speed and clarity, a call is irreplaceable.


What are alternatives to an 03 phone number for business?

If you’re not in telecommunications, you might never have given much thought to what kind of phone number you’d like to use. But there are a few different options, and they have different benefits and drawbacks. You might be overwhelmed with decision-making, but this one’s worth thinking over.

Geographic phone numbers

These are the standard landline numbers which people tend to be most familiar with. They begin with 01 or 02, and they’re what we usually use to call domestic numbers. Most people’s home phones will have a standard geographic number.

Geographic numbers, as the name suggests, signify specific geographic regions. Different areas have specific area codes attached – that’s the part that comes after the 01 or 02.

One benefit of choosing a geographic phone number for business is the cost to your callers. Calls to these numbers tend to be very affordable. Typically, calling from a landline costs up to 16p per minute. Some providers might add a connection charge of 23p. Charges can also vary according to the time of the call.

If callers are dialling from a mobile, the cost will depend on their specific plan. Callers who have bundled minutes as part of their mobile contract, will find calls to geographic numbers are almost always be included. If they’re using pay-as-you-go or have run out of inclusive minutes, calls can cost between 3p and 65p per minute.

Premium rate phone numbers

Some businesses use premium rate numbers as a source of income. Calls to these numbers are usually a fair bit pricier than standard geographic numbers. Part of that cost tends to go to the business which is being called – this is called the service charge. Callers also pay an access charge, which goes to their telephone provider. The access charge they pay will depend on their individual provider.

Consumers tend to be used to seeing these kinds of numbers to access services like directory inquiries or voting on television programmes.

There are different types of premium rate phone numbers. How much callers will pay depends on which type you choose.

084 numbers have a service charge of up to 7p per minute. 087 numbers can reach 13p per minute. Choose a number beginning 09, though, and your calls could cost customers up to £3.60 for every minute of the call! There can also be a one-off charge, ranging between 5p and £6.

If you’re looking to make some extra money, a premium rate number can be an option. Some companies also value them for being different than geographic numbers. Because standard, personal landlines are geographic, and because these numbers are regional rather than national, there are some who consider alternatives to give a sense of prestige or professionalism. But if you really want your customers to feel comfortable contacting you, you should think carefully about only being reachable via a premium rate phone number.

03 telephone numbers

03 numbers are younger than the other two alternatives, having been introduced by Ofcom in 2007. It’s a move appreciated by many companies who saw the value of an 03 phone number for business.

You can learn more about 03 numbers here, but the thinking is pretty simple – and very clever. Essentially, it takes the pros from each of the two other categories, and removes their cons, creating the ideal hybrid. 03 numbers aren’t geographic, so they don’t denote any specific location. That means they give the sense that your company has a nation-wide presence. It also sets the tone of professionalism; it doesn’t look the same as the number they use to call their nan.

But the real benefit of an 03 phone number for business is that it doesn’t cost callers extra. Thanks to Ofcom rulings, calls to 03 numbers cost the standard landline rate. That means calls cost the same as if you had a geographic number. If the person calling has minutes included in their contract, the call won’t cost them a penny!


Are there other benefits to choosing an 03 phone number for business?

Making it easy and cheap for your customers to reach you is definitely important. And retaining your company’s professional image matters, too. By choosing an 03 phone number for business, you’re also giving your customers a clear message. You care about them, their experience, their expenses. You’re choosing the option that best fits their needs and interests. Trust us, customers notice, and they appreciate it.

But there are also companies which don’t have that much communication with the public. And, while customer service is indispensable, there are lots of other aspects to running a business.

Internal communication is one of the most vital of these other aspects. By choosing an 03 phone number for your business, you’re making it easy for employees to stay in touch, too. And ensuring employees feel happy and appreciated is pivotal to any business’s success.


How else can I use an 03 phone number for business?

The topic of internal business communication brings up another way 03 phone numbers are great for business. They make it possible to hold genuinely free conference calls. Given the almost limitless uses for conference calls, and their many benefits to businesses, getting them free is an opportunity not to be missed. And because calls to 03 numbers are included in bundled minutes, and WHYPAY? doesn’t charge a penny for providing its free plan, this opportunity is a reality.

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Plus, this is a conference room which can be easily accessed from a landline or from a mobile phone. So all of your remote staff will be happy, your shareholders can call from wherever they may be, and you’ll never be rushing to get back for a virtual meeting again.

And if protecting your company’s image is one of the main draws of picking an 03 phone number for business, WHYPAY? can do you even better. Our different Plans have a range of features to meet all your professional needs. With the Pro package, you can even get your very own 03 number. By providing you with a private conference bridge, you’ll ensure that number only reaches your business. And you can get custom branded conference calls, to really protect and foreground your business’s brand.


The bottom line

The bottom line might be that to run a successful business, you can’t only think about your own bottom line. You should always try to keep unnecessary costs down for your customers, employees, and anybody else who might interact with the company.

But that doesn’t sacrificing a prestigious image. By using an 03 phone number for business, you can really get the best of both worlds. And with WHYPAY?, you get a whole host of other great features and benefits of 03 phone numbers.

So have a look over the plans and features to see what suits you best, and start making the most of 03 phone numbers for business today.

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Photo by Mihai Surdu on Unsplash
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