Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Free Number Search

Phone numbers are cheap to get these days, and the search for a number you like can be done at no cost.

When I needed a toll-free number for my business, I turned to a service called Kall8. I was able to search through a list of available numbers without even creating an account.

Kall8 even has local numbers throughout the United States, which is useful when a business wants to provide local access to their out-of-town customers.

Kall8 is a hosted service. This means that they run the equipment that manages the call routing. You have control over the settings via a web portal, so you can customize how your number handles calls. I'll give you a quick review of features in a moment, but first it's important to ask if there are any negatives?

Before you decide to use a hosted number, you should make sure you consider anything that might negatively affect you.

Disadvantages with Using a Hosted Number

There is always the other side to consider before making a decision to use a hosted phone number. Let's review them.

You still have to have an active phone line from your local phone company if you want to receive incoming calls. The Kall8 number can forward to any other number and that's how you receive your calls.
If one wants to use his or her office number, and transfers it to the hosted service agency, there no longer will be a way to receive the transferred calls. Unless one keeps a line with another number or uses a cell phone.
Even though the monthly fees are very low for hosted services, ongoing usage charges can add up. If you do a large business and have calls coming in from, say, television advertising, you could possibly run up a big bill.
If one forwards the office number to the hosted service, they can't use that same line to receive calls that may be transferred back. That would create an infinite loop.
If none of these issues is a problem for you, then Kall8 could be a very useful service for your home or small business.

What Kind of Phone Numbers Can You Find?

Original 800 and vanity numbers can be found at no cost for the search. If you find one you like, you can register an account to start using it immediately.

Billing is $2 a month for 888, 877, 866 and 855 area codes, while 800 and vanity numbers are slightly higher.

Useful Features

There are advantages with having a phone number serviced by Kall8. With Online Management, you can set up custom Call Forwarding to other numbers or even to your cell phone. You can set up and maintain your Voice Mail. You can block unwanted numbers. You can even enable fax detection and direct incoming faxes to go to your email as a PDF file.

All this is possible because the number is hosted by a service running on an automated system. Parameters can be changed as desired for many custom configurations.

There is so much more that can be done, features not available with ordinary phone service. It's perfect for a small business that needs to control costs.

For further detailed information on Kall8's features, see this related article:

Kall8 Toll Free Phone Service

About the author: Glenn Stok is the founder of Stok Software, Inc., a New York business that designed and supported small business phone systems for over 35 years.

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