Virtual phone numbers are great because they don’t tie your number to a physical location. It’s a cost-effective way to get a separate phone number you can answer on the phone you already have. They’re commonly used as a business number for entrepreneurs and small businesses. After looking at a dozen different virtual phone number companies, we found Nextiva to be the best option because of its affordable pricing for businesses of all sizes and built-in CRM features.
The Best Virtual Phone Number Company for Most
With Nextiva, you can get a virtual phone number with an area code from any state in the country, as well as Washington D.C. Whether you just want one number to use for your business or multiple numbers so customers can call a local phone number, there’s no shortage of area codes to choose from.
As soon as you pick a number, you can get started using it almost immediately thanks to Nextiva’s instant activation. Plus, getting it set up takes less than five minutes. All you have to do is pick a number, choose where you want the calls to go, and that’s it. To sweeten the deal, all of Nextiva’s VoIP plans include voicemail, call forwarding, and extensions with no additional equipment required.
The Best Virtual Phone Number Company Options to Consider
- Nextiva – Best for most
- Grasshopper – Best for solopreneurs and small teams
- eVoice – Best for sending faxes
- GoToConnect – Best for automotive businesses
- Google Voice – Best for Google Workspace integration
When It Makes Sense to Invest Into a Virtual Phone Number
Virtual phone numbers are a cost-effective, lightweight alternative to an entire business phone system. Whether you’re looking to switch from traditional landlines or are a small business just getting started, it’s a great way to keep costs low.
They also give you and your team the mobility you need to answer calls on the devices you already own. So, you don’t need any expensive equipment and there are no installation fees.
Aside from saving money, it’s an easy way to snag a local number (even if you don’t live in the area you’re servicing).
For solopreneurs, a virtual number means you can talk to clients while separating personal and business calls on your mobile device. Not only is this a smart move for you, but it also makes your business appear established to new leads.
Virtual phone numbers may also make sense if you’re starting to hire employees who need their own numbers. You can easily add new lines in a few clicks at a fraction of the cost of traditional business phone systems, with no additional equipment or hardware required.
On the other hand, virtual numbers aren’t great for anyone wanting to leave business at the office since they’re typically connected to your mobile device.
#1 – Nextiva – The Best for Most
Nextiva continuously comes in as our top pick because of its comprehensiveness, affordability, and reliability (among dozens of other factors). Whether you’re a small team just getting up and running or a midmarket business switching from traditional landlines, it’s a smart choice that won’t leave you guessing.
From free phone numbers, unlimited calls in the U.S. and Canada, unlimited online fax, an auto-attendant, and 24/7 support, you get everything you need to centralize business communications.
But the best part is that you get all of that (and more) on the entry-level plan.
Nextiva has 99.999% uptime with its military-grade data centers. When a user’s power is out, they do not lose communication as calls can be automatically forwarded to a cell phone.
It provides customers with a virtual phone number and offers a complete CRM tool that integrates seamlessly into the virtual phone system and can help manage an entire business.
Users can see customer insights when receiving calls, including the caller’s name, business info, and the value of the account.
Nextiva has softphone and hardware options such as the mobile app, VoIP desk phones, or conferencing phones.
Nextiva charges on a per-user, per extension basis. There are four plans available.
The Essential plan is a basic starter plan with unlimited voice calling, video calling, and faxes. It starts at $11.95 per user per month, billed annually. It’s the only plan that includes a free seven-day trial. The other plans offer a demo instead.
The Professional plan is for smaller teams and includes unlimited conference calls, video conferencing, and business texts. It has professional setup and starts at $20.95 per user per month, billed annually.
The Enterprise plan is for small to medium teams. It includes unlimited video conference participants and video conference recording. It also has extended integrations with apps like Microsoft Teams. This plan starts at $26.95 per user per month, billed annually.
Finally, the Ultimate plan is for larger teams. It includes features like sales productivity, pipeline management, and automated surveys. This plan starts at $52.95 per user per month.
Nextiva has competitive pricing, a CRM tool, and exceptional customer service. It is the complete package for businesses of all sizes.
#2 – Grasshopper – The Best for Solopreneurs and Small Teams
Grasshopper is the best virtual phone number company for solopreneurs and small business owners. If that sounds like you, you’ll love the easy setup and helpful features in this simple solution.
Not only can you keep your personal and business numbers separate while using one device, but you can make your fledgling or small business appear larger through automatic greetings that refer customers to other departments. Grasshopper users can even pay a small fee to have a professional voice actor record their greeting.
It helps take companies from mom-and-pop shops to professional businesses. And there’s no hardware, no wires, and it can be set up in five minutes.
Grasshopper lets users set up a local number, a toll-free number, or import a current number depending on their needs. It also has a vanity number option. Examples of vanity numbers are “1-800-FITNESS” or “1-800-PLUMBER.”
It has desktop and mobile apps, Wi-Fi calling, 24/7 customer support, and multiple extensions. It also includes business texting and auto-texting responses.
Pricing plans are for one to five phone numbers, but more can be added if needed. Grasshopper has a seven-day free trial so users can try before they buy. Users save over 10% with annual billing, but monthly billing is also available.
The Solo plan starts at $26 per month. It provides one phone number with three extensions. The Partner plan starts at $44 per month and gives users three phone numbers with six extensions. The Small Business plan is the largest and starts at $80 per month. It provides five phone numbers with unlimited extensions.
Grasshopper has some great features for solopreneurs, and it’s simple and extremely reliable. However, it’s not perfect.
It is somewhat expensive for such a simple tool. If you own a larger business with complex needs, Grasshopper will not work for you.
If you’re a solopreneur or small team ready to take the next step, Grasshopper is your best option.
#3 – eVoice – The Best for Sending Faxes
If sending faxes is a large part of your business, eVoice is worth looking into. eVoice is a basic virtual phone number service at an affordable price.
eVoice services customers through a software application that allows users to answer and route calls professionally. It gives users the appearance of a larger business, and it even has customized studio-recorded greetings available.
Its services include a 24/7 auto attendant that allows users to pick a local phone number to connect with clients in any location.
eVoice really shines with its faxing capabilities. Besides receiving basic faxes, users can quickly forward or send new ones to other email addresses.
This is done through its outbound faxing feature. It costs an additional $1.95 per user per month and allows users to set up email and text alerts when new faxes arrive. Users can create and send online faxes straight from eVoice. It also grants the ability to include custom cover sheets.
Pricing is straightforward: The one plan is $12 per user per month billed annually. This increases to $14 per user per month if billed monthly. It includes a 30-day money-back guarantee.
eVoice is one of the most inexpensive virtual phone number companies available. You pay for what you get for here. It lacks many features, including any CRM tools, but it’s extremely inexpensive and great for outbound faxing.
#4 – GoToConnect – The Best for Automotive Businesses
GoToConnect is a robust PBX communications solution that can work for a wide array of businesses. Get a toll-free number and port over any local numbers you have on any of GoToConnect’s plans, alongside its phone, meeting, and collaboration platform.
It includes voice and video conferencing, has hardware like phones and headsets, and a mobile app for business on the go. GoToConnect has 99.99% uptime and 24/7 customer support.One
In the automotive space, GoToConnect is used by companies like Ford and Michelin. It integrates with automotive systems like E-Leads, VIN Solution, Purple Cloud, Momentum, and Dealer Socket. GoToConnect is a powerful tool for everyone in the auto world, from dealerships to manufacturers.
Its mobile app allows customers to reach employees remotely. It has call forwarding, call cues, and ring groups to ensure customers are transferred to the right employee. While customers are put on hold, promotions can be played. These allow dealerships to mention hot deals and sell more vehicles.
Another great feature is the video conferencing tools to host virtual training. GoToConnect allows users to share documents, stream live videos, and send pictures to customers. And the support center is there to keep track of customer communications across multiple dealerships.
GoToConnect pricing is separated into three plans which depend on the number of users.
The Basic plan is a simplified phone system starting at $19 per user per month billed annually.
The Standard plan has a fully-featured chat, phone, and video conferencing system. This plan starts at $20 per user per month, billed annually.
The Premium plan includes the support center and starts at $30 per user per month.
GoToConnect offers reliable service overall and is competitively priced. It specializes in specific industries, and its support center is extremely effective.
#5 – Google Voice – The Best for Google Workspace Integration
Google Voice is perfect for businesses needing a virtual phone number service that integrates with Google Workspace, formerly known as G Suite.
It works with smartphones, desk phones, and computers. Google Voice prides itself on simplicity and easy setup, and it has 24/7 customer support.
Google Voice allows billing, porting, and number assignments to be seamlessly organized into Google Workspace.
It integrates with apps like Google Calendar and Google Meet. The AI auto-transcribes voicemails and categorizes spam before a call goes through. There’s also a do not disturb mode for when users are ready to unwind.
The pricing is separated into three plans.
The Starter plan costs $10 per user per month, and it allows up to 10 users and 10 domestic locations.
The Standard plan costs $20 per user per month. It allows unlimited users and unlimited domestic locations.
The Premier plan costs $30 per user per month, and it allows unlimited users and unlimited locations, including international.
We believe the Premier plan does not provide much extra value. The only feature it includes is international calling.
Google Voice is a simple virtual phone number service and should be used by people who love Google Workspace. If you’re familiar with other Google Apps, this will be an easy learning curve.
Methodology for Choosing the Best Virtual Phone Number Company
There are some key factors to consider when picking the right virtual phone number company. If you understand the importance of these, choosing the right one will be a breeze. While some factors are more important than others, the following three must be considered.
A quick onboarding process is especially important for established businesses. Virtual phone number companies must have helpful onboarding teams to make this transition as smooth as possible.
Most businesses can’t afford to have their phone lines down for an extended period. This will cause them to miss sales, lose opportunities, and damage relationships with existing clients.
If you hear of a virtual phone number company with a grueling onboarding process, stay away.
Setup time is less critical for solopreneurs getting their first business line. They have ample time to continue taking calls on their cell number during setup.
Virtual phone number companies serve their customers through hardware, software, or both.
Hardware includes office phones, conference call phones, and headsets. Software usually means downloading an app to turn your mobile phone into a “softphone.”
Business owners just starting out will lean toward a software-only service. New entrepreneurs don’t typically need all the extra hardware, and this will make onboarding simple.
Larger businesses with many employees and a physical location will lean toward hardware or a hybrid service. If conducting conference calls, it would be inefficient to have only mobile phones for employees. Virtual phone number hardware is also more professional within an office setting.
Another critical factor to consider is your team’s size. Virtual phone number companies can specialize in different sizes.
If you have a larger team, pick a provider that has large team features included. You will also want to choose one with user-based pricing. User-based pricing plans get cheaper the more users sign up, which is beneficial to teams with dozens of users.
Smaller businesses should look at virtual phone number companies that help smaller audiences. These teams will typically want to choose usage-based pricing plans. If you have lower call volumes, this will save your team money.
Choosing a virtual phone number company doesn’t have to be complicated. Different companies tailor to diverse audiences. It’s important to factor in the criteria mentioned in the methodology section before choosing.