What are Vanity Phone Numbers?
A vanity phone number is a usually a toll free number that spells a word related to a business’s brand or industry. These custom toll free telephone numbers have been a popular marketing tool since the late 1960’s. In this case “vanity” doesn’t mean pride or self-importance; it means a unique word related to business’s marketing, brand, industry, or service. When someone hears an advertisement on the radio or sees your ad on a billboard, a vanity telephone number makes it easy for the person to remember your business’s toll free phone number. The independent organization called SMS800 is sanctioned by the FCC to house and regulate 1-800 telephone numbers. When telephone companies conduct an 800 phone number lookup and search for available phone numbers they are searching the SMS800 database. This database is used as a vanity phone number generator, generating all available vanity 800 telephone numbers not currently in use by other businesses.
How can I get a Vanity Telephone Number?
If you are looking for vanity phone numbers for sale you’ll need to find a toll free service provider, such as UniTel Voice, with a custom toll free search tool that allows you to do an instant vanity phone number search. This search should generate all available combinations of 1-800 telephone numbers (vanity toll free numbers) that spell the word or phrase you are looking for. However, vanity numbers don’t have to be 1800 numbers. Vanity telephone numbers can start with other toll free number area codes such as 888 or 855 or 866 or 877 or even the newest toll free area code 844. You should note that the three-digit area code of a toll free number is often referred to as a toll free prefix, not an area code. Using the search tool to look up available numbers is easy. Simply enter the word or phrase you’d like your phone number to spell and the toll free search tool will display all available results. If you find a vanity phone number that you like, you can instantly reserve it and signup for long term toll free service by choosing a usage plan. Some companies charge a one-time “vanity” fee for custom toll free numbers. This fee usually ranges from $15-$50 depending on number; however some vanity 800 number like 1-800-FLOWERS can even cost tens of thousands of dollars!
Why should I get a Vanity 1-800 Number?
The obvious reason to use toll free vanity 800 telephone numbers for your business is they’re easy to remember. They’re not only memorable they reinforce your company’s brand. However, the main reason your company should invest in a vanity toll free number is something called toll free number portability. This means you own your business phone number. Before the FCC implemented these telecom regulations to protect against the monopoly power of large phone companies – toll free service providers could hold your number hostage. If they decided to raise your rates, you could either pay the new rates or lose your number. Telephone numbers with local area codes do not have toll free number portability protection in the same way 800 numbers do. If you spend lots of money marketing your business’s phone number you want to make sure you own the number and are free to port or “transfer” that number to any carrier at any time. That is way local vanity phone numbers are not a good idea for business use.