020 Numbers Explained

By Emma Lewis, bOnline

Area telephone codes. They’re probably not something you think about much. But area telephone codes are crucial to businesses in particular, and can make a big difference to their marketing and professional image.

We’ve put together this brief guide to look at 020 numbers specifically.


What Are 020 Numbers?


020 numbers are telephone numbers that begin with the 020 area code, including 0203, 0204, 0207, and 0208. They are the area codes for London and the area immediately surrounding it.

Officially, there isn’t any difference between the London telephone numbers that start with 0207, and those that start 0203, 0204, or 0208. In the past, only 0207 and 0208 numbers existed, but as they started to run our 0203 and 0204 numbers were also introduced.


Why Are Area Codes Important to Businesses?


There are quite a few reasons why area telephone codes are important to businesses. Primarily, they can help small businesses especially to obtain a local feel, building trust with customers in a specific area. Having a local area code that’s used in marketing, such as on a business website or flyers, brings about a greater sense of familiarity too. Businesses can also tailor their marketing efforts to a targeted area and demographics.

Furthermore, area codes can help businesses manage and route calls better, as they can organise their phone systems based on a geographic location. This streamlines communication processes by making sure calls are answered by the right person in the team. 

Can I Get An 020 Number Even If My Business Isn’t Located in London?


Yes you certainly can, by getting a VoIP digital phone system and a virtual number.

VoIP digital phone systems work in a very similar way to traditional landline phones. However, when you make or receive a call, the sound is transmitted in digital ‘packets’ over the internet, instead of through copper wires.

So all you need is a stable internet connection (fibre wifi is best, although 4G or 5G are also good) and away you go. Better sound quality and no worries about mobile black spots. Plus, as it’s all cloud-based, you can make calls from your smartphone or tablet on the go.

There are loads of other benefits of switching to VoIP, not least because you’ll protect your business from the impending landline switch-off. For example, when you sign up to a VoIP phone package you generally pay a fixed price inclusive of calls and line rental each month, a bit like you would with a mobile phone contract. This can save you some serious money on call costs, especially if you need to call abroad a lot.

VoIP digital phone systems also come with a variety of business-friendly features, like call divert, voicemail, conference and video calling, hold music, call analytics data and more. Not only does this mean you’re less likely to miss an important call, but you can better serve your customers.


How Do I Get a Virtual 020 Number? 


Many VoIP digital phone providers, including bOnline, will allow you to have any available virtual number you want. Once you’ve got signed up, they’ll simply switch you over.


How Do I Find the Right VoIP Provider For My Business?


When choosing the ideal VoIP provider for your business there’s lots to think about. From how much you want to spend, to how long you feel comfortable being in a contract for and what features you need, it’s well worth doing your homework. We’ve covered this in more detail in our recent article Switching To VoIP: What Small Business Owners Really Want To Know, which you might find useful.

Don’t forget, it’s also worth finding a VoIP provider (like bOnline) that offers a free trial. It’s the best way to try out all the features without the commitment.