How Much Does a Phone Answering Service Cost?

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There’s little doubt that an answering service can do wonders for your company but, just as with every other business purchase you make, it must be able to fit within your budget. So just how much will it cost you to have live agents answer your inbound calls?

With over 40 years in the industry, we’ve certainly seen many changes to the cost of answering services. It seems as though every company prices their services in a different way, which can really make it difficult to figure out how much you’ll pay.

Why Call Answering Service Costs Are Confusing

During your research, you may have come across two main types of pricing: per call and time-based.

Per-call pricing would seem self-explanatory. Yet, when you consider that each company has a different definition of what a call is, this is where the confusion can begin. For example, one company may define a call as any call that was picked up, even if that call was a wrong number or the person hung up before speaking.

In fact, there are companies which will even count a fax, email, or text as a call and bill you for these!

Time-based pricing is, as you may suspect, based on actual time. Therefore, it does tend to be a more accurate representation of the amount you pay an answering service company.

Here, too, there can be confusion. While some call answering services will charge only for the time they spend on the phone, others may charge you for searching for information or sending email or text messages. Still, the fact remains that time-based pricing is a far more accurate predictor of what you’ll be billed.

4 Pricing Packages to Consider

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Your needs will determine how much your answering service costs. A company that can offer several options will allow you to fine-tune your costs and get you the package that’s best suited for your business’s call volumes.

What you’ll find below are some of the more common packages that answering service companies tend to offer. While this won’t be representative of all companies, it gives you a good idea of what you may pay for professional agents to answer your business calls.

The Free Trial

Free trials are a great choice for those who aren’t sure about their call volume, who want to see how a service works, or both. However, you’ll want to make sure that your free trial is actually free and won’t obligate you to sign up.

Business Package

The Business package’s base price is $47 per month, with $1.37 for each minute. This can be preferable to a free trial, because you can try the service for a longer period than the seven days a free trial allows.

Growth Package

The Growth package covers 125 minutes of calls for $177 per month, with the option of additional minutes for $1.30. This package can be useful if your business is starting to gain momentum or if you’re going through a busy season and want to ensure all of your customer calls are answered.

Premium Package

The Premium package is $296 per month for 225 minutes of calls and $1.28 for additional minutes. This selection is perfect if you are a business who regularly receives large volumes of calls.

Custom Package

Should you need more than 225 minutes, the Custom package may be your solution. This option is ideal if you receive a lot of calls but are also conscious of your budget. We take care of all the work and put a plan together that suits your needs and budget perfectly.

Which Services Affect Your Cost?

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Some virtual receptionist services will charge extra for items like message delivery, HIPAA compliance, and nationwide coverage. While some companies will add these costs to your final bill, which may result in unpleasant surprises, others will include these as standard parts of their answering service plans.

All in all, you will want to look very closely at every detail of the packages a service provider offers so that you can account for every cent you spend before signing up.

How to Choose the Best Company and Pricing Plan

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As you now know, every professional answering service will offer you different pricing and features. So how do you choose the best company?

A company with several years of experience will allow you to get your calls professionally answered far faster than an inexperienced company. They should also offer cost-effective plans that include several features as standard, with no surprises when you receive your bill.

An Industry Leader Since 1982

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At AnswerMTI, we understand the importance of ensuring value for business owners. We have been in business for four decades, and we understand that our clients want true value from their answering services.

All our package prices include these important features and services:

  • Unlimited users
  • Full customization
  • Toll free or local number
  • Around-the-clock availability
  • Free message delivery
  • Friendly, professional receptionists
  • 100% HIPAA compliance
  • No long-term contracts
  • Secure client portal
  • Nationwide coverage

Even if you have no idea how many calls you receive on a monthly basis, that’s perfectly fine, because our experienced account reps are there for you. They can help you determine which service level is best for your needs.

If your call volumes increase or decrease, you’ll find it incredibly easy to scale your plan to your calls.

AnswerMTI clients also love the fact that there are no obligations to sign a long-term contract. Your agreement with us is always month to month so that you have the freedom to choose. Finally, you can customize every part of your plan, including your minutes and your script!

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When you want professional live receptionists, common-sense pricing, scalability, and freedom of choice, AnswerMTI offers all of these and much more! We’re ready to meet your needs and exceed your expectations; get more pricing information today.