Non Geographic Telephone Numbers
Non Geographic telephone numbers bring a number of advantages to the modern business large or small. These are telephone numbers which are not related to a specific national geographic location, but relate to a designated expected cost to the caller. The most common types are Freephone, Local Rate, National Rate and Premium Rate. These types of numbers often sit 'in the cloud' and are frequently managed via a web login.
At it's most basic form, these types of numbers simply redirect the caller to an alternative telephone number which usually is a 'standard number' such as a mobile or geographic number (such as 020 for London, UK). Many levels of features can be added ontop of this basic re-routing functionality including greeting messages, menu options, call recording and analytics.
For numbers which are free or low cost to the caller, the receiver of the call generally has to subsidise the cost of each call by paying a monthly charge to the service provider.
Sometimes the charges are determined by the second, by the minute and may be with or without an initial connection charge.
Freephone numbers often start with 800 and the caller can trust that in most cases the call will be free. The cost to the owner of the number can vary based on how memorable the number is, where it's located and the terminating number. These are the cheapest for the caller and most expensive to the receiver of the call.
Local Rate Numbers
Local rate numbers are designated in the UK to begin with 03 and the caller generally pays a low cost for each call, similar to what they would expect on a landline calling a local number. The receiver of the call is usually still charged for each call, but the cost is much lower than a freephone number. There is generally a cap to the cost of the call, but this varies from region to region.
National Rate Numbers
National rate numbers are a generally a higher cost to the caller than 'local' but much cheaper than premium and can often be cost-neutral to the receiver or even generate revenue.
Premium Rate Numbers
These numbers usually begin with 9 or 900 and the caller can pay a great deal for each moment of the call. There is usually an agreed 'profit share' between the service provider and the receiver of the call. These types of numbers can be a good way to charge for a service without having to make a one-to-one transaction manually with the caller.