What phone number should a choose: 10DLC (local) or toll-free

Modified on Wed, 06 Sep 2023 at 07:50 AM

Deciding between a toll-free number and a local number for your business depends on several factors, including your business goals, target audience, budget, and the nature of your products or services. Here are some considerations to help you make an informed decision:

  • Audience Reach:

    • Local Number: If your business primarily serves a local or regional market and you want to emphasize your local presence, a local number can be a good choice. It may make your business feel more accessible and familiar to local customers.

    • Toll-Free Number: If you want to reach a broader national or even international audience, a toll-free number can create a perception of a larger, more established business. It's also useful if you expect a significant number of out-of-town or out-of-state customers.

  • Branding and Perception:

    • Local Number: Using a local number can help your business appear more community-focused and approachable. It can be particularly beneficial for small businesses that want to emphasize their local roots.

    • Toll-Free Number: A toll-free number can create the impression of a nationwide or global presence, which can be beneficial for businesses aiming to establish themselves as industry leaders or serve a wider customer base.

  • Cost:

    • Local Number: Local numbers are often more affordable to obtain and maintain compared to toll-free numbers. Monthly service charges and per-minute rates may be lower with a local number.

    • Toll-Free Number: Toll-free numbers typically come with additional costs, including monthly fees and higher per-minute rates for incoming calls. Consider your budget when deciding if this option is feasible for your business.

  • Marketing and Advertising:

    • Local Number: If your marketing efforts are primarily focused on a specific geographic area, a local number can be easier for local customers to remember and dial.

    • Toll-Free Number: Toll-free numbers are often used in national advertising campaigns because they are more memorable and can be dialed from anywhere in the country without incurring long-distance charges.

  • Scalability:

    • Local Number: If you plan to expand your business to other regions or markets, you may need to acquire multiple local numbers, which can become cumbersome to manage.

    • Toll-Free Number: A toll-free number can be more scalable, as it remains the same regardless of your business's physical location. This makes it easier to maintain a consistent brand identity as you grow.

  • Customer Expectations:

    • Local Number: Consider what your customers expect. In some cases, local customers may prefer a local number, while others may view a toll-free number as more professional and reliable.

    • Cons of using a toll-free number for your business: May appear spam-like: Do you automatically send calls from unknown 800 numbers to voicemail? Your customers might too. If a toll-free number makes it unlikely clients will answer your call, you probably shouldn't use one. As with anything in business: know your customers.

  • Call Volume:

    • Local Number: If you expect a high volume of incoming calls from local customers, a local number may be sufficient.

    • Toll-Free Number: If you anticipate a significant volume of calls from customers outside your local area, a toll-free number can accommodate this without additional long-distance charges.

Ultimately, the decision should align with your business strategy and objectives. You can also consider a combination of both options to cater to different customer segments or regions. Additionally, consult with a telecommunications provider or service to explore the specific options and costs available in your area.


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Referrizer's recommendation:


Referrizer recommends using 10DLC instead of toll-free numbers. 10DLC numbers are more reliable, and have higher delivery rate than toll-free numbers. This results in improved SMS engagement, as receiving a text from a 10-digit number with a local area code feels more personal than receiving a text from a toll-free number.

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