How SwitchboardFREE helps sole traders

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As a plumber who operates a 24 hour call out service. I've always been reluctant to use my mobile for work - I think it's unprofessional to be taking calls whilst doing a job, plus there has been more than one occasion when my phone has dropped into a toilet. So, when I heard about the free call management service from, I signed up.

Registering with switchboardfree means that you can have two free 084 numbers and despite what people believe, 0843 & 0844 numbers aren't hugely expensive and are just 4.2p a min from a landline. I quickly noticed that using this service gave me three immediate benefits

Firstly, as a sole trader, people have often been put off from contacting me to help them as they think I may be a cowboy or unduly expensive. Using an 084 number means that people think they are calling a large company - rather than just an individual.

I know from working both alone and for a firm, that potential customers tend to prefer using the services of a company and the security this can provide rather than taking a chance on some solo guy with a monkey wrench! Either way, for me and for them the outcome is the same - I do a great job.

Secondly, I use two numbers, one for emergency call outs and another for every day work. This means that I can prioritise and plan my work so that I have a reputation for being reliable and do not let anyone down. I don’t like the thought of someone being waste deep in water waiting for me whilst I am out doing another job.

Thirdly - and this is the main reason why I use the service so maybe I should have put it first, if any potential or actual customer calls my 084 number, then I automatically get an email notifying me of their number and the time that they called. So every night I check my emails or on my iPhone if I am between jobs and then get right back to them. If I want to, I can also have the calls rerouted to my mobile as well. So this means that I never lose out on any work and my customers are guaranteed a response. I also get an email if someone calls my switchboardfree number and they hang up - so no more frustration on their part and loss of work on mine.

Like I said, there are a load of other features that come with using switchboardfree. Since I have been using it, I've noticed that I have had a lot more work in respect of not missing anymore calls. Customers have been recommending me on the basis that I always get back to them. So if it has helped me and made other people happy, I don't see why it wouldn’t help your business too - whether or not your company is large or if it is just you on your tod like me.

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