If you serve customers across the U.S. and Canada, having a location-based area code isn’t always ideal. For example, a New Yorker probably won’t call a Vancouver number — especially if they can reach a similar brand without the long-distance charges. Even a San Francisco number may make your business feel a world away. But with an 855 area code, your location will no longer hold you back. ✈️
Much like remote teams and VoIP phones, 855 numbers aren’t tied to any city. It can attract folks from all throughout North America. In this article, we’ll define the 855 area code and its benefits, then explain how you can get an 855 number for your business.
What is an 855 number?
An 855 number is a toll-free number, meaning it’s free for callers to dial. No matter the distance, your leads, clients, and other stakeholders can speak with you in real time without worrying about the cost.
Phone numbers with 855 area codes are accessible to callers in all 20 countries included in the North American Numbering Plan (NANP), including the United States, Canada, The Bahamas, and Dominican Republic. So even if your U.S. client is vacationing in the Caribbean, they can reach you for free like they’re back at home. 🏝️
How toll-free numbers work in the U.S. and Canada
When your small business starts offering toll-free calls, U.S. and Canadian customers won’t have to pay for outgoing or incoming calls with your team. If a client doesn’t share your country code, long-distance charges are typically passed onto your business. Want to avoid these additional fees? You’ve got two great options.
First, you can manage your toll-free calls through a VoIP phone system that offers unlimited free calling in the U.S. and Canada. With OpenPhone, for example, U.S. businesses won’t have to worry about international fees stacking up when they work with Canadian clients.
Some toll-free phone numbers (including all OpenPhone numbers) are text-enabled. This means your U.S. and Canadian clients can exchange text messages with your team without getting charged, in addition to making calls.
How do other toll-free area codes differ?
If you haven’t heard of an 855 area code, you’ve probably heard of an 800 or 888 number. Or perhaps you’ve seen an 833, 844, 866, or 877 area code. All of these codes are toll-free prefixes that signal to your clients that you’ll cover the cost of the phone call.
There’s no functional difference between any of these area codes. They all serve the same purpose. But having seven unique codes ensures that businesses will always be able to claim their own toll-free numbers when they need it.
Back in 1996, the 888 area code was created after the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which assigns toll-free numbers, ran out of 800 numbers. More codes were created later as 888 numbers grew in popularity too. So while toll-free phone numbers are popular, newer options like the 833 and 855 area codes ensure you’ll never have to put up a fight to get one.
Benefits of getting a toll-free phone number
So what makes toll-free numbers so popular among businesses? They’re highly beneficial for companies of all sizes. Here are four benefits you may experience when you get an 855 phone number or another toll-free number.
1. Attract a larger customer base
Local numbers can help you attract clients from a small geographic area, but toll-free numbers can help you reach a much broader customer base. Your caller ID won’t suggest that you exclusively operate in one city. Instead, toll-free numbers show your potential customers that you’re ready to serve clients throughout North America.
In this sense, an 855 area code can help your business look larger — even if you’re a team of one. Your number can help you gain the reputation of a full-fledged global business as you start to target customers abroad. 🌎
Plus, if you offer a 24/7 sales or customer support line, a toll-free number reassures clients that they don’t have to worry about time zones before they call.
2. Show your legitimacy
Dialing a local number feels a lot like calling a friend. 📱 While this can help local companies build client relationships, it can decrease the legitimacy of a national or international business. On the flip side, a toll-free number shows clients that you mean business. Toll-free numbers are so often used by established brands that clients may see you as an industry leader once you put an 855 area code into play.
3. Get more incoming calls
Toll-free numbers can help your business achieve a higher volume of calls. You’re giving clients a more convenient way to reach your team members live, even if they’re living abroad. When clients know they don’t have to worry about cost before each call, they’ll have a much improved customer experience. Covering clients’ long-distance charges is an easy way to show your appreciation and encourage them to continue working with you.
Using a toll-free number can help you convert leads, too. People who are interested in your products or services don’t want to pay long-distance fees just to learn more, before they’re even invested in your brand. By taking care of those fees, you get them to speak one-on-one with a live sales rep, who can provide personalized service and make your brand the obvious choice.
4. Make your phone number memorable
A typical local number is rarely memorable, but toll-free numbers can get stuck in your head for ages — catchy jingles optional.
When you’re choosing a toll-free number, you don’t just have the option to choose a memorable string of numbers. You can also choose a vanity number, like 1-800-FLOWERS. This can help you brand your business, so clients remember how to call you, even if they don’t reach out right away.
While 800 and 888 numbers — the original toll-free area codes — have fewer options due to their popularity, you can select from a wide range of phone number options when you choose an 855 area code.
How to get an 855 area code
Getting a toll-free telephone number is easier than ever. You don’t need to drive over to your local AT&T store or set up a landline in a physical office. You can simply claim your number as you’re signing up for a VoIP service.
With OpenPhone, for example, getting a toll-free number only takes a few steps.
- Go to OpenPhone’s website to start your free trial.
- Enter your email or sign in with Google.
- Pick your OpenPhone number. You can tap on “Toll-free numbers” or enter a specific toll-free area code like “855.”
- Enter your credit card to start the trial. You can cancel anytime and won’t be charged until after the trial.
Once you complete the signup process, you’ll instantly be able to use your toll-free number on our web and mobile apps.
OpenPhone also supports free phone number porting. If you get your toll-free number from somewhere else, fill out this 1-minute porting form, and we’ll take care of the rest at no cost!
While some VoIP platorms may set different limitations for what you can do with your toll-free number, OpenPhone ensures you can fully meet your business needs from day one. All OpenPhone users, including toll-free subscribers, can access features like:
- Unlimited calls and texts in the U.S. and Canada
- Shared phone numbers
- Business app integrations
- Auto-attendant (IVR)
- Voicemail transcriptions
- Call recording
- Dedicated customer support
Get an 855 area code with OpenPhone
Toll-free phone numbers eliminate long-distance charges for your callers while boosting your reputation, so you can earn more leads and customers with ease. With an 855 area code, you can choose from a wide range of memorable number combinations and vanity numbers. This way, you can stick in users’ minds.
Signing up for a VoIP service like OpenPhone is one of the simplest ways to claim your 855 number. Start your free trial to get a toll-free number and all the business phone features you need in a matter of minutes.