Lots of entrepreneurs run their small businesses from their personal mobile phone. It makes sense. Especially when you’re working with a shoestring budget or you’re always on the go. You want to be accessible, so you can make the most of every opportunity. And getting a whole new phone for your business is an investment many small business owners can’t afford.
But that doesn’t do any favors for your personal life. Late-night calls and texts from clients can make it impossible to stop thinking about work.
Thankfully, you don’t need another phone for your business to separate work-related communication. You can just get a separate business line for the phone you already have.
When you own a business, it’s easy to feel like you’re never really “off the clock.” It doesn’t matter if you’re eating dinner, catching up on your favorite show, or spending time with friends or family: there’s a lot of pressure to answer the phone, especially if you’ve been running your business from your personal cell phone.
Your clients don’t just need help from 9–5. You may have employees counting on you. And providing extraordinary service can be crucial for getting referrals and word-of-mouth marketing.
But your health is vital to your business, too. You need boundaries to keep your business from consuming your relationships and eliminating the activities that keep you feeling refreshed and eager to pursue your goals.
Getting a separate, dedicated phone number for your business helps restore your work-life balance by letting you add a phone answering service (like Numa) to your business line. When clients call this number, your personal phone still rings. But you’re able to immediately tell whether they’re calling for your business or for you. And if someone calls your business and you’re not available (or it’s after business hours), you can let the answering service pick up the call.
It’s a lot easier to set boundaries when you know your clients will still get the help they need.
Every answering service is a little different, but when Numa answers the phone, it asks your clients if they’d like to start a text conversation or leave a voicemail. If they opt-in to texting, Numa’s conversational artificial intelligence answers their questions and helps them get what they need. Anytime Numa doesn’t know how to answer a question, it notifies you in the Numa business app, where you can respond to your client via text at your convenience. Numa sees how you reply and learns from your responses—so it’s always getting better at saving you time.
With clear work-life boundaries in place, you can stop burning the candle at both ends, enjoy your personal life, and stop worrying about business outside of business hours.
Right now, every time a new person discovers your business, the phone number they see is your personal number. Once you get your business line set up, you can put that number on your website, Yelp, Google, Facebook, and anywhere else someone might look to contact your business.
That’s an important step for your privacy. And once your business line is set up, you can go back to ignoring calls from unknown numbers, like a regular person.
It can feel jarring when customers call a business and learn that they’ve actually reached the owner’s personal phone number. Unless you answer your phone like a front desk receptionist every time and your personal voicemail message is about your company, it can be an unexpected experience for people who thought they were calling a business number.
With a separate business number, you don’t have to guess whether someone is calling you for business reasons or personal reasons. You can have a distinct process for answering calls to each number, including separate voicemail boxes.
No matter how available you aim to be, you’re simply never going to be able to answer every call. If you’re with a client or busy at home, you can’t always help someone over the phone. And those overflow calls are a problem—especially for small businesses. Every missed call is a missed opportunity. Even if you actually listen to your voicemail, most callers won’t leave you a message. They’re simply going to find what they need somewhere else, or else decide they don’t need it.
Setting up a separate business number and enabling a phone answering service ensures that whenever you can’t get to the phone, your customers still get served.
Running a business is stressful enough already. You don’t need calls and texts from clients dominating your personal phone, too. Set up a business phone number on your personal phone, and let Numa answer calls when you can’t (or don’t want to).
Start a free trial of Numa today. We’ll get you set up with your new business line right away.