New Business Launching - Virtual Numbers and Address.

Discussion in 'International Business' started by mrka, Dec 22, 2018.

  1. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    Hi, I have been developing an online business which will allow me to work and travel. I am set to leave the UK mid January. The business was due to launch early December but issue with website stuff, but it's back on track now.

    What I want is a 'virtual address' and 'virtual number'. Ideally I would like to be 'situated' in a city like Leeds or Manchester, as well as having the 0113 or 0161 number diverted to my mobile when I am out the country (as well as in it), and the posibility to be able to divert the number to a member of my UK team if and when needed.

    I know there are options out there, just looking for some cost effective ones.

    A local business centre is asking for £130 a month for a virtual address and that just screams too much!

    I know with all these things you have to read the small print, but I have seen some for £1.99 a month, and that kinda screams TOO LOW.

    Any insight on this would be great.

    Thanks.
     
    Posted: Dec 22, 2018 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #1
  2. Leo Salazar

    Leo Salazar UKBF Contributor Free Member

    37 10
    I use Skype telephone numbers for my business telephone number. They're cheap, available in most locations, and are easy to forward and program remotely.

    Regarding an address, my advice is to find a local post office box company. Business centers charge exorbitant prices because they expect you to also be using their physical facilities, meeting rooms and the like. In addition, they also offer services such as live telephone answering and rep services. But a local post office box company will collect your mail (if anyone uses snail mail anymore) and forward it to any address of your choice. And they won't charge you an arm and a leg for the service. Years ago I had one for New York City that worked like a dream, and just yesterday I inquired about one here in Kuala Lumpur. Here in KL they quoted me 35 Malaysian ringgit per month, around 6.5 pound sterling. And this was for an A location (Bangsar).
     
    Posted: Dec 22, 2018 By: Leo Salazar Member since: Sep 2, 2017
    #2
  3. UACU

    UACU UKBF Contributor Full Member

    53 4
    you can try Virtual land phone, i am using this one fro my virtual office
     
    Posted: Dec 30, 2018 By: UACU Member since: Jun 2, 2017
    #3
  4. Cash Cow

    Cash Cow UKBF Contributor Free Member

    32 2
    Use Skype to go for your number...
     
    Posted: Jan 8, 2019 By: Cash Cow Member since: Dec 13, 2018
    #4
  5. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    Thanks.. I have found www.soho66.co.uk Can anyone vouch for these?
     
    Posted: Jan 12, 2019 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #5
  6. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    Will always need an internet connection won't I? Plus just spoke with them online, they said the app always needs to be open and onloine, whereas a virtual number that simply redirects to your phone would just be more simpler?
     
    Posted: Jan 12, 2019 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #6
  7. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    Don't you always need an internet connection with skype? And the app always has to be open in the background??
     
    Posted: Jan 12, 2019 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #7
  8. cjd

    cjd UKBF Legend Full Member - Verified Business

    15,440 3,068
    Virtual numbers are cheap and easy these days. There are a few things to look out for though. It's likely that you'll want to do more with your number/s than simply divert them as time goes on - particularly if you're successful.

    You may want to add staff and other functions like call queues, virtual assistants and extensions etc. It's advisable to have a desk phone too so that you're not paying for a divert when it's not needed. So pick a service provider that offers the full range of services so you can add them if and when you need to.

    Best to pick a service that,s a member of the Internet Service Providers Association too as that way you know that they follow minimum set of standards. A provider with a quality mark is even better.

    https://www.itspa.org.uk/

    You'll need a mobile app that lets you turn the diverts on and off as you like from wherever you are. We have a free one that will automatically set diverts as you move away from your office and back when you return.

    This is how we do it.

    https://www.voipfone.co.uk/Call_Forwarding_And_Divert.php
     
    Posted: Jan 12, 2019 By: cjd Member since: Nov 23, 2005
    #8
  9. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    Hi, just to bump this and ask anyone who might know...

    I have looked at the options above, and SKYPE seems to be a good fit, but does anyone know if this system would be sucking data all day long as the app would need t be open in the background?

    I am keen to get a virtual address also, but i want / need an actual address, not a PO BOX, it would look better that way, such as BIRCH STUDIOS, QUEENS CHAMBERS, LONDON, E1 etc.. What would be the most solid and affordable way to get an address like this, not using media centres as they want £130 a month!
     
    Posted: Apr 30, 2019 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #9
  10. Mark T Jones

    Mark T Jones UKBF Big Shot Full Member

    3,155 911
    You are legally required to give a 'real' address (not A PO box). As a practicality, you want to be certain that said address will forward all mail to you - or even open, scan & email it - those are services which cost money.

    Does your accountant offer this service?

    Also consider any other services you 'head office' might provide you before you decide on cost
     
    Posted: Apr 30, 2019 By: Mark T Jones Member since: Nov 4, 2015
    #10
  11. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    I have not decided on an accountant yet, the one I would use is based in Yorkshire, a small town... I want to be based in a city... The 2nd reply here staes he uses a PO BOX, I would not wnat to use a PO BOX though, of course yes a real address, but you can still have virtual address etc.. hence why I am asking for the best cost effective type in a city like Leeds or London.
     
    Posted: Apr 30, 2019 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #11
  12. intheTRADE

    intheTRADE UKBF Contributor Free Member

    55 9
    Have you looked at Clevver Mail ? Cheap as chips and does what you need
     
    Posted: Apr 30, 2019 By: intheTRADE Member since: Apr 14, 2019
    #12
  13. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    Looks good thanks... but upon further thinking, perhaps I am going to need some form of package collection also, from time to time... Somethign to think about as I need a solid solution now and not be changing it later on... I will still look into it tho...

    Any ideas on package collection, forwarding etc?
     
    Posted: Apr 30, 2019 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #13
  14. Scoombs

    Scoombs UKBF Contributor Free Member

    47 4
    I use Regus as a virtual office, mail forwarding and telephone answering. It's been ok in the main although their customer service is the best. If there are calls then the answer and try to transfer to my mobile and then email details as well. We pay about £160 a month for a central London address, this also allows us to use their offices lounges globally which has been useful in the past.

    I'm not convinced they are the best choice but have a central london location looks good. Most of our suppliers (Banks, accountant, insurance etc) have my home address so the mail forwarding is very limited.

    My advice would be to consider who your clients will be before deciding. If (like mine) they are large then changing head office details is always a pain and can take time for them to fully action. So if you opt for a cheap virtual office then decide to change you may have a few issues to address, nothing unsurmountable but more time spent dealing with large company inefficiencies.

    Overall though a virtual office has been a good thing for my business. We also have a Skype number, works on mobile as well. It's just an app thats virtually dormant until it's needed, it really wont take any significant data, check your mobile plans if you are going to be overseas though.

    Hope this helps.
     
    Posted: May 6, 2019 By: Scoombs Member since: Mar 5, 2012
    #14
  15. Countrymun

    Countrymun UKBF Regular Free Member

    122 16
    Can't help with the address (although presumably there are some smaller companies that would charge reasonable fees).

    Phone-wise, we have been using Voipfone for at least 4 years and find it works really well - although sometimes the quality wasn't brilliant until we got fibre broadband.
    However, you could set up voip on your broadband at home and then use settings to have all calls forwarded to your mobile - but I assume you will need to pay the forwarding costs and not sure what they would be for overseas.
    But for a low cost phone number, Voip works for us and we were able to choose a geographic code that applies to our area.
     
    Posted: May 7, 2019 By: Countrymun Member since: Sep 13, 2014
    #15
  16. Ray272

    Ray272 UKBF Regular Free Member

    181 23
    Skype for calls. Regional number £44 A year. Call costs very low.

    A great service I use for correspondence is scanmypost

    9.99 a month payg this includes upto 40 pages of scans. Log in and view the post.
     
    Posted: May 14, 2019 By: Ray272 Member since: Jul 5, 2017
    #16
  17. mrka

    mrka UKBF Contributor Free Member

    98 3
    So you pay £44 a month with skype, then you also pay to receive call also o top? Or are incoming calls free?
     
    Posted: Jun 4, 2019 By: mrka Member since: Jul 11, 2013
    #17
  18. Mr D

    Mr D UKBF Legend Free Member

    14,874 1,622
    Think he was referring to annual fee.
     
    Posted: Jun 4, 2019 By: Mr D Member since: Feb 12, 2017
    #18
  19. NickGrogan

    NickGrogan UKBF Ace Free Member

    1,884 419
    TTNC for numbers, divert them anywhere including to VoIP or voicemail.

    Most cities have companies offering mailing addresses, expect to pay around £50 per month, more if you get lots of mail.
     
    Posted: Jun 4, 2019 By: NickGrogan Member since: Nov 15, 2012
    #19
  20. Ray272

    Ray272 UKBF Regular Free Member

    181 23
    Yh that's an annual fee.

    I've never answered the phone to be honest so cannot comment on incoming charges, if any. Cheap as chips outgoing though. Voicemail works good too.
     
    Posted: Jun 4, 2019 By: Ray272 Member since: Jul 5, 2017
    #20