Recognizing calls from an 800 number

Recognizing calls from an 800 number.There are basically 4 different ways that you can differentiate or recognize calls from your 800 number as opposed to calls to your local number. With regular toll free service a call to your toll free number gets forwarded to the ring to number and everything works the exact same as if they dialed your local number directly, in terms of the ring, voicemail, call forwarding, hunting and caller ID, etc. If you need to be able to know when a call is coming from your toll free number as opposed to your local number you will need to use one of the following 4 options.

Caller ID is the simplest way

I hear you saying but I don’t know the numbers of the people that are going to be calling my toll free number. That’s right, but you do know the numbers of 95% of the people that call your cell phone. You probably already have them programmed in so their name shows up and you may even have a different ring for them too. So if you point your toll free number to your cell phone you can just assume that callers that aren’t programmed in are to your cell phone are probably calling from the toll free number.

This is usually the easiest solution and if it allows you to put off having a regular land line for your business for the first few months, that alone will probably save you much more than the cost of getting the toll free number.

Get a distinctive ring line from your local phone company

Your local phone company can give you a distinctive ring service which will make your phone ring differently when people call that second number. Don’t give out the second number but point your toll free number to it. Then when people dial the toll free number you’ll always hear the distinctive European sounding ring-ring. This only costs a few bucks per month from your local phone company.

Use an Enhanced Voicemail Service that announces calls

Another easy way to accomplish this is to use almost any of the enhanced voicemail services. Most of them have a feature called Call Announce. When a call is forwarded to you in most enhanced voicemail systems, a computerized voice will announce the call for you and ask what you would like to do with it… Answer it (to be connected live), Send it to voicemail, Forwarded it to someone else, Return to the que, etc. while the customer is on hold. This feature is sometimes called Whisper or if it prompts them for their name it may also be called Call Screening since you would know who they say is calling when you decide to accept it or not. This makes it very easy to tell when it’s a call from your toll free number because you don’t have to use your business voice unless you press the button to accept it after you hear the voice.

Some services like Kall8 (one of the enhanced voicemail services) can also tell you the number the caller dialed instead of the callers phone number in the caller ID. This could be an additional way to tell a toll free call from a call to your local number.

Get a Separate Line

Of course you can always get a separate line. Many services allow you to have a second line very inexpensively.

It’s also important to point out that you might start out by simply using the first option, with caller id on your cell phone and then switch to the second option, using distinctive ring on the local line once you get things going. Then when your business starts to grow and you begin working with more people, many companies switch to an enhanced voicemail service to create a virtual office. Then if you ultimately do get a full office you might graduate to the last option with your own pbx phone system and/or a receptionist.

It’s important to realize that your needs can change and just because you pick on of these options, doesn’t mean that you can’t use any of the others later on. The whole point of our service is to guarantee you flexibility.

We understand that it can be very important to keep things separate when you’re running two separate businesses, or if you’re starting a new venture on the side and there are definitely some good ways to do what you need to do. I hope this is helpful but if you have any questions you can of course call 1-800 MARKETER for more or email Bill Quimby at

UPDATE: Another way I just found. offers an option to have your toll free number show up on the caller ID instead of the caller. This way you can tell on any phone that shows caller id, if it’s coming from your toll free number and a business call.

    1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
    Loading ... Loading ...

    1 Comment »

    Bill Quimby (666 comments.) says:
    December 15, 2008 at 1:35 am

    When I say calls coming from an 800 number, I’m not referring to calls that show an 800 number in the caller ID. That is usually a telemarketer. I’m referring to how to recognize callers who dial your 800 number and get forwarded to your local number as opposed to people who dial your regular local number.


      1 ping

      Pointing your 800 number to your cell phone can save you money at says:
      January 4, 2009 at 12:45 am

      [...] are 3 more ways to recognize calls from your 800 number if that’s important but using your cell phone and the Caller ID is the simplest way. (No [...]

        RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

        Leave a comment

        Random Testimonials

        Testimonial 1850 out of 1983

        Thank you so much for your great service. We really appreciate it and look forward to working with you on other upcoming projects.

        Thanks for the awesome service.

        Eric T. Wagner
        Wagner Creed, LLC
        Sisters, Oregon

        Testimonial 230 out of 1983

        I am writing you today to thank you for your services. We have found that your 800 services are just right for our growing company. With the addition of the 800 number we have seen a drastic increase in phone calls to I would

        like to take this moment to thank you and your company.

        Marc Henderson

        Testimonial 332 out of 1983

        Thank you very much for your help. It is very obvious you are very oriented with the telephone marketing field as well as numerous other available pbx technologies and I appreciate your assistance.

        Sebastian Sobieski
        Concept Developers & Realty Group

        Testimonial 39 out of 1983

        In our business we need to be at the tip of our customers tongues and the top of their minds and the number you got us 1-800 ROBS TICKETS gave us a brand name that can do this!

        Rob Vallombroso -
        Rob's Entertainment Services, LLC

        Testimonial 647 out of 1983

        I really appreciate all you and your staff have done for me to get my toll free number activated. I ordered it on a Sunday night from your search list, and it was working Monday by noon. When I next ordered an expiring toll free number, the commincation from your staff was prompt and informative. It has been a pleasure dealing with your company and I will recommend it to others.

        Joe Dorsey

        Testimonial 1711 out of 1983

        great site, ez to use!

        Ty Romsa
        Grand Island, Nebraska

        Testimonial 886 out of 1983

        I could not be any happier with my experience getting a toll free number from Your website is easy to navigate and your search programs gave me more options that any other toll free website I could find.

        I did not think it was possible to get a number so quickly. I found the number I wanted, then purchased it online, and I "instantly" got my number. It could not be any faster. You even have a way to reserve the number in case I found another number that was better.

        Mel Williams
        Eye Zone Medical

        Testimonial 1690 out of 1983

        You have a really well designed site. Thank you so much for your help!

        Christopher Trochez
        Jefferson, Louisiana

        Testimonial 653 out of 1983

        I was going crazy when my toll free number was turned off. After calling the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) which offered no help in my search, they referred me to you and your site.

        Presto, you knew exactly how to track the number and helped me get my most important asset working again.

        Your awesome Bill, and the FCC thinks so too.

        Frederic H. Schilling
        Senior Guardians of America

        Testimonial 499 out of 1983

        Your service is excellent! You make it easy to find a suitable toll free number & for that I thank you.

        Mike Justice
        TJ Justice's Just Mowing