Advertising, social media, radio, and the Internet all play a part in creating a positive perception of a company. However, if a business doesn’t greet their customers on the phone in a professional and caring manner, lost forever is a potential great first impression. A basic telephone system worked well in a different era long ago. Technology changed that forever. Modern business requires a seamless solution to their communication needs without the added cost of unneeded features. A virtual phone system removes the worry about compatibility and hosting issues.
Grasshopper provides a practical solution for companies searching for a virtual solution that works seamlessly with both mobile and home phones, and offers all the in-demand features designed with unlimited minutes. The Grasshopper system is uncluttered and a snap to set up, and offers a choice between three service plans with pricing based on phone numbers needed and extensions required to keep even remote workers all connected under one roof.
Specifically, each of the three plans includes unlimited minutes with all features available and price points based on the number of phone numbers and extensions required.
Solo Plan - $29 per month, including one phone number and three extensions. $26 per month if paid annually.
Partner Plan - $49 per month, including three phone numbers and six extensions. $44 per month if paid annually.
Small Business Plan - $89 per month, including five phone numbers and unlimited extensions. $80 per month if paid annually.
Grasshopper pricing details feature no contracts and monthly billing with no-fee cancellation. Annual plans provide a 10% discount and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
The automated attendant within Grasshopper is a professionally recorded greeting available for $75 for up to 250 words.
Ease of Use for Employees and Employers
A virtual phone system requires none of the phone equipment or desk phones needed for traditional systems. The Grasshopper virtual service works with existing mobile and home phones.
The system’s automated attendant answers phone calls from customers and clients and routes them to the designated employee or department within the organization. Employees can select forwarding phone numbers when using the system, whether to a home phone, mobile device, or any other phone of their choosing.
Grasshopper provides employees with total autonomy over calls routed to them. This includes up to 15 different phone numbers they have calls sent to, and the order and the number of rings before taking action on the calls, such as switching to the next number on the list or when to forward the calls. Forwarding times include 24/7 always on, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, or weekends only.
As phone calls come in, employees can answer them directly or send them to voicemail. Also, the system provides the option of an audible announcement of the caller’s phone number or name to screen calls during busy times.
Within the Grasshopper online portal, employers can create department extensions that provide an easy way to place employees into department groups, with calls then routed to specific employee extensions within each department.
The online portal is central to the Grasshopper system. All functions and features run through this portal. All users have access and it’s here they set the call-forwarding tree and designate which phone numbers get forwarded and the ring order as calls arrive.
Traditional phone systems provide in-house and remote users plenty of features, but until now, virtual phone systems came up short. Grasshopper includes many of the in-demand features found in most traditional systems, but doesn’t include some features such as app integrations and call recording.
The features that users demand like an automated attendant, hold music, a directory of names, call screening, voicemail to email, voicemail transcription, texting, and online faxing come ready-to-use within Grasshopper.
Perfectly integrated into the Grasshopper system is their mobile app designed for Android and iOS devices that allows employees the freedom to make and receive calls, check voicemail, review their faxes and call history, set up push notifications for any missed calls and messages, and change call forwarding settings. The iOS app allows users to sign faxes and PDF attachments with just their finger. The soft phone included in the desktop app allows users to place calls and send text messages from their business lines.
During set up, users choose either local, toll-free, or custom vanity numbers for their use. Grasshopper will port numbers of organizations with existing and established phone numbers to help make the transition as easy as possible. Porting a local phone number typically takes about 7-10 business days to complete, while only 3-5 business days for toll-free numbers.
While Grasshopper doesn’t offer a traditional phone system, some phone system providers offer both virtual and traditional systems in case a business outgrows the capabilities of Grasshopper. Here, switching to another system is seamless and straightforward.
The complete conference calling feature included with Grasshopper boasts a no-charge bridge feature enabling employees to hold their own conference calls with up to ten callers and with unlimited participants in the Small Business plan.
If business needs dictate a requirement for caller capacity over that which Grasshopper provides, the use of a larger conference calling service becomes necessary. Many services outside of Grasshopper offer capacities of hundreds or even thousands of participants.
Representatives posing as business owners interested in a virtual phone system tested the quality of Grasshopper’s customer support and contacted them several times. The company answered each call professionally and showed patience and knowledge of the product.
Note that the representatives stated that some questions were not thoroughly answered, but the prevailing impression was that they left the conversation with a clear understanding of how the system works, including features and pricing options.
Included in Grasshopper's customer support critique were comments that reps did not offer a way to follow up in case more questions arose, but when contacted again with more questions, they immediately answered all the questions.
Live support offered 24/7 and help via an online form provides customers with help whenever it’s needed. For those who prefer a step-by-step guide, Grasshopper’s website provides a comprehensive guide with complete details of each aspect of the system.
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