How To Start a Telephone Answering Business
A telephone answering service business is relatively inexpensive and is a home based business that you
can operate without having to leave the comfort of your home. It offers great money making potential and
is one the easiest to operate.
Any business that relies on the telephone is a potential customer. However, your target market will most
likely be small businesses and professionals with a busy schedule that relies on incoming telephone calls
yet cannot take these calls themselves during certain periods of the day.
Some of the best prospective customers to target are small businesses and/or professionals that operate
long or odd hours. Examples of such professionals and/or businesses are repair service businesses such as
plumbers and electricians.
The needs of an answering service business will vary from one business to another. Most answering services
only receive incoming calls on behalf of the businesses or professionals for whom they are working. There
are some answering services that offer services beyond this, such as doing some administrative tasks and/or
making outbound calls.
A business may want or need to have a telephone answering service handle the telephone calls that it
receives during a certain period of the day or 24 hours a day. You should choose in advance, the hours that
your business will operate and the services that you will provide. This will help you better determine the
needs of your business.
Setting up Your Business
If you will be operating a telephone answering service business by yourself, it may best to solicit the
business of businesses and/or professionals that need such a service during only certain time of the day.
For example, you can choose to have your hours of operation be from 8AM to 6PM. This will allow you to
more easily operate your home business by yourself.
You should also choose in advance the number of clients and the services that your business will be
providing for them. If all that you will be doing is receiving inbound calls, this will make it easier to
handle the responsibilities of more than one business at a time. The number of clients that you will take
on and the services that you will offer will determine how you will set up your home based business.
The way most home based business telephone answering services are set up, is for there to be a separate
phone line for each for each client. Each telephone is then marked with the company name to help you identify
which client phone line is ringing.
Having separate phone lines installed should run you $100 to $200 each. There will also be an additional
monthly charge of roughly $35 to $40. You can buy the telephones at a local store. If you intend to expand
your home based business into a small business, you will want to lease a switchboard and possibly move to
a small office. This allows you to take on a higher volume of calls and therefore more clients. For the
purpose of this article however, only the aspect of starting and operating a home based business telephone
answering will be discussed.