I'm getting a phone for my new business and I'm debating to either get a 888 number or a local one.
My main concern is high phone bills on a 888 number, when I will get support and other calls.
At the other side of the coin, with a 888 number the company looks national, while a local number puts a pin on the map in the user's mind.
What's your experience on this?
Toll free is crazy cheap these days. If you are using a landline look at pioneer telephone.com. If you want something more flexible maybe http://grasshopper.com/ would serve you. I definitely would not let cost concerns hold you back.
Keep in mind if you expect international callers you will also want to publish a 'local' number as reaching toll free prefixes is difficult from most places outside the US and Canada.
If you find yourself spending a lot on support calls that will be a strong signal to you...
My experience is that a toll free number is still used and much appreciated by customers. See my prior answer about toll free numbers here and the related comments that it sparked.
AT&T just recently offered to add our toll free number to our unlimited long distance outbound coverage for a flat $12 per month. I think this kind of pricing makes it a no brainer.
Though most folks can call from their cell and not get charged long distance, many large organization still restrict LD calling. So you really don't have a choice, if any of your customers work for such organizations.
That all said, as your volume goes up, you will be able to get a better rate. I recall paying under 1cent per minute at one of my companies, but we also had 10K+ minutes worth of incoming calls.