Regrettably, the perception of 800 numbers has evolved over time. While they still hold value, particularly for customer service inquiries, their effectiveness has dwindled when it comes to outbound sales or B2C appointment calls. In fact, if your still using them it's likely hurting your answer rate.
Benefits of 800 Numbers
They offer customers a convenient, cost-free method to return calls - a benefit in the past, but with the prevalence of free long-distance on mobile phones, this advantage has diminished.
Ideal choice for prominently displaying contact numbers on sales and customer service platforms.
A toll-free number can create an impression of an established business with a wide national presence, setting it apart from local enterprises.
Drawbacks of 800 Numbers
Given the pervasive use of telemarketing and automated calls, individuals tend to be wary of answering toll-free numbers, often assuming them to be sales pitches, marketing endeavors, or worse, scam/fraud.
Though the exact percentages vary based on different scenarios, it's evident that local phone numbers significantly outperform 800 numbers for outbound sales calls.
When recipients spot a toll-free area code on their caller ID, it's a strong indicator of a business call. If the number appears as "unknown," indicating an unfamiliar 800 number, they're more likely to ignore the call.
If you're still relying on an 800 number for your outbound sales or customer service calls, you should explore local presence dialing and gauge its impact on your answer rates.