Tag Archives: small business

AFAR: At the End of the Line for Animal Rights

by Sue Walsh



Phone.com Customer Service Pooch

Customer Service pup Wino, enjoying the green grass at Phone.com’s Poway offices.

Customer Advocates for Animal Rights (AFAR) came to Phone.com through our affiliation with Grassroots.org, a partnership that gives non-profits one year of free phone service.

Based in Michigan, AFAR’s goal is to advocate on animal-rights issues, educate the public on spaying and neutering, and celebrate the special bond between animals and the people who care for them. Their phone line is used to raise funds and gather support to provide no-kill temporary housing and care for strays.

Director David Farr says Phone.com has definitely helped move AFAR’s work forward. “As we grow, Phone.com is there, meeting our needs, often even before we know we need something.”

AFAR uses a Phone.com customized toll-free number. This feature lets customers pick a number that is easy for callers to remember and dial because it uses letters associated with the organization. For example, AFAR’s donation and support line is 1-866-224-AFAR.

Sancho, our Chief Happiness Officer

Sancho, our Chief Happiness Officer

David says AFAR staff are impressed by the friendly, helpful support they receive from Phone.com Customer Service. “They always go the extra mile, providing quality service.”

What David doesn’t know, is that at Phone.com, we love our dogs! From tiny Wino the Dachshund-Beagle pup pictured above to three-year-old Pit Bull Sancho, the hounds rule our Customer Service center.

We wish AFAR every success in protecting and advocating for our furry friends!

Find the Best Vanity Phone Number for Your Business

by Sue Walsh

With so many companies building an online presence, it’s easy to forget that we still rely on the humble telephone to do business and create success.

Small companies use their phone lines to answer customer questions, take orders and deal with vendors, which is why a memorable vanity number is such a valuable asset.

What is a Vanity Number?

A vanity number is a local or toll-free phone number made up of a string of numbers or letters that are either easy to remember or represent your business well. For example, 858-555-5000 or 1-800-FLOWERS.

Software Advice, a Texas-based service that helps businesses select the right software for their needs, recently published a great decision tree (shown below) that will help you choose the best vanity number for your business.

At first glance, the chart looks a bit intimidating, but the process is simple: Find the best word or phrase to represent your business > see if it’s available > take it!

Vanity Number Decision Tree. Source: Software Advice.

Phone.com Vanity Numbers

Phone.com offers a free vanity toll-free number with all plans. When choosing yours, we encourage you to work through Software Advice’s flowchart to find the very best number for you — it should only take a few minutes.

Also remember that your vanity number should be easy to recall, look professional and lend credibility to your business. 1-800-FLOWERS, for example might be better than 1-437-FLOWERZ.

Building and maintaining name recognition with a vanity toll-free number is one of the easiest ways to win business!

Extending Great VoIP Service Through Our Channel Partners

by Adele Fredeluces

iStock_000009457868SmallAt Phone.com, we love our Channel Partner Program (CPP). It allows businesses that would benefit from bundling Phone.com with their own services to offer their clients superior VoIP phone service!

While Phone.com provides software tools, training and support for CPP Agents, the agents work one-on-one with their own clients to provide great customer support.

Matthew Demaree, CEO of HTDNET, a Virginia-based computer consulting and web-hosting company, signed on with the CPP Agent program in 2011 after using our phone service for a couple of years.

“We became authorized Phone.com agents, allowing us to take our knowledge and experience of Phone.com’s products and services directly to our customers—getting them the direct support they need and still getting awesome backup support from Phone.com when we have a special issue or request.”

Demaree is a big Phone.com fan. “We have NEVER had a customer-service failure. Phone.com always goes above and beyond to ensure everything is done right.” And even though Phone.com’s customer support is HTDNET’s favorite feature, he says that our easy-to-use control panel and our menu system are pretty close to the top of their list too.

HTDNET has also seen significant savings in pricing for their clients. “After their 30-day free trial, our latest new account will save $70 per month or $840 a year switching to Phone.com from their previous VoIP provider,” says Demaree.

Demaree says his agents agree that Phone.com is the Ritz-Carlton of VoIP services. “Top that with real human interactions, US-based call centers, and the drive to do more for customers every time. Awesome sauce!”

As for us at Phone.com, building and maintaining good relationships with our CPP Agents is a key part of our customer support!

Use DomainSkate To Protect Your Brand

by Phone.com

domainSkateDomainSkate.com has been a satisfied customer of Phone.com for a few years now, making it that much better to connect with them at NY Tech Day two weeks ago. In fact, our booth was right across from Phone.com’s, giving us the opportunity to chat with their team and get outfitted with some Phone.com swag!

We also had a chance to talk about the product we recently launched—our online brand protection for small- to medium-sized businesses. DomainSkate helps companies manage their brands and domains online, keeping cyber squatters and other domain abusers away.

For demo purposes, we entered “Phone.com” into our software dashboard, and predictably, there were many results for domain names that included the term “phone.” Most notable were instances where people were obviously trying to target Phone.com by registering domains like www.phonecom.com and www.phone-com.com. Also, there were those who’d registered the term “phone” in the new domain TLDs (Top Level Domains), who may later try to sell those domains to Phone.com competitors; for example, www.phone.computers, which showed up in our search results.

What’s key is that DomainSkate’s system showed that there are people out there looking to capitalize on the Phone.com brand name by using new domain extensions to scoop up domain names similar to “Phone.com.” What can Phone.com or any small- to medium-sized business do to protect themselves?  A lot actually, and much of it can be done without breaking the bank!

Online brand protection is not just for the Googles, Yahoos! and Citibanks of the world. Every business can police its name and brand by making sure no one is taking advantage of them online. Simply go to DomainSkate.com and sign up for FREE for the first 2 months (use code PHONE). The system will check your brand name, give you initial results and then do a deeper sweep a few hours later.

Next, if your company has a registered trademark, DomainSkate can help you get into the Trademark Clearinghouse, which delivers two key benefits. First, it ensures that you have the first right to obtain your brand name in a new domain, such as “YourStore.Web” or “YourB&B.Hotel.” You’ll also be notified, for a period of time, if people try to take your name on a TLD.

Finally, if you’ve found that someone has your domain name and is cybersquatting, typosquatting or just trying to fool your customers or hurt your business, DomainSkate has resources to help get your name back.

Time for a quick shout out: Phone.com is the perfect complement to what we do at DomainSkate. From their easy-to-use control panel, we can point our toll-free number anywhere. This means that if we move to larger offices or want to route calls to our mobile phones while we’re out of the office, we have that freedom. This is critical to the success of our business!

If you run your business online, take your phone system online too with Phone.com—and remember that there are Internet criminals out there who want to capitalize on your success.

face-david1David K. Mitnick is the Founder and President of DomainSkate, LLC, an Internet company that focuses on online brand protection. Mitnick created DomainSkate when he saw the potential in the expansion of the global Top Level Domain space. He also shares his expertise in the area of Internet Domain Law, having written for, or been quoted in, CircleID, Mashable, VentureBeat, Inc. and Digiday. Find him on Twitter @DomainSkate.

Phone.com University

Phone.com University – How to Send a Fax

by Derrick Lewis

Every Phone.com account includes the ability to send a digital fax. Say goodbye to your fax machine!

How to Send a Fax

You can send a fax through any extension on your account. To begin this process:

  1. Mouse over Configure at the top of your account page and select Manage Users & Extensions.
  2. Select Edit next to the extension from which you want to send a fax.
  3. Select Send a Fax on the left-side navigation bar within the extension settings.

phone1

You are now on the Send a Fax page. To create your fax:

  1. In the Fax Number field (1) enter the fax number to which you want to send a document.
  2. Enter cover page information (optional).
  3. In the Send a confirmation email to field (2) enter your email address to receive a successful delivery confirmation.
  4. Select Choose File (3) to upload the document you want to send.
  5. Select Preview Fax (4) to provide a preview of how your fax will look to your recipient.
  6. Select Send Fax to fax your document.

phone2

Once your document has been sent successfully, you will get a delivery confirmation email. This is the only record you will have of your fax being sent successfully. Save this email if you need it for your records.

That’s all it takes to send a fax! See you next Monday for some more Phone.com knowledge.