by Tom Senkus
Author’s Bio: Tom Senkus is a US-based writer that specializes in sharing his knowledge of starting a business in the most efficient way: virtual phone numbers. For more information about his list of services and published work, visit www.tomsenkuswriter.com
Have you considered the possibility of starting a business in the United States? If so, you may have been a little confused on the process, especially if you’ve already established a business outside of the United States.
The truth is that in the 21st century — thanks to advancements in telecommunication — it is no longer necessary to go through with the arduous process of establishing a physical presence in the United States, which includes some of the following:
- Buying/ Leasing property
- Hiring staff and/ or choosing government-approved sponsors
- Investing capital in the country by opening a foreign bank account
- Adhering to federal, state, county, and city regulations
In this article, we’ll take a look at how to start a new business in the United States with virtual phone numbers.
First, What are Virtual Phone Numbers?
With the many developments in cloud computing and advancements like VoIP (“Voice over Internet Protocol”), there are now tools such as “virtual phone numbers” available for businesses to expand their global presence. When a virtual phone number is called, the call is instantly routed to another phone number located anywhere in the world. This means that if your business operates outside of the United States, you can gain access to customers in all 50 states of the United States (and its territories) instantly. For businesses that are located in the United States (and those within the North American Numbering Plan), virtual phone numbers can give you local authenticity and access that can jumpstart your business (see below).
Creating a Virtual Location in the United States
Now that you know how virtual phone numbers work, you should know that they’re a significant component of creating a new business model called a “virtual location” (or a “virtual office”). Virtual locations are simply a business presence that uses Internet-based technology to create a sense of place — or, more importantly, a place where Americans can do business. Considering that many Americans handle their business online (via apps, websites, etc.) and save only the most important decisions for talking to a customer service agent, it is, therefore, an excellent option to start a new business in the United States with virtual phone numbers.
Why? Well, let’s take a look at the many benefits that virtual phone numbers offer.
Benefits of Virtual Phone Numbers in the United States
Localization: Americans appreciate authenticity and tend to be suspicious of outside influence. For a foreign business or a business located out of state, having a phone that corresponds to phone numbers that they’re familiar with can aid in the localization process of your business. As an example, a New Yorker that receives a phone call from a Montana-based phone number might not pick up the phone simply based on the unfamiliarity. Now imagine how likely that same New Yorker is to pick up a phone call that originates from outside of the country?
With virtual phone numbers, you can pick which state and/ or city that your intended target market will be in. This means that if you want to establish a business presence in the United States, you can blend in just as locals would — something your potential customer inherently trusts and finds authentic to the unique way of doing business in the US.
Access: Despite the United States being a wealthy country, not every American has the ability to get in touch with foreign businesses or has the preference of dealing with businesses outside of their country, state, or even city. With virtual phone numbers, you can eliminate service provider restrictions (blocking calls that originate from other countries, charging long-distance fees, etc.) that would otherwise be barriers to communicating with new customers and clients.
There are many varieties of virtual phone numbers at your disposal. For instance, if you’re looking to offer a free way for customers to get in touch with your business, there are toll free numbers available from service providers like United World Telecom.
Functionality: Because virtual phone numbers use Internet-based technology, there are a number of add-ons that can enhance how your company does business with Americans. For instance, “simultaneous ringing” can ensure that any inbound calls are handled by any available staff member. “Time of day routing” can ensure that inbound calls from American callers are handled by your company’s available staff members (and not reaching a voicemail).