Answering Service Companies: Costs & Comparisons

published on 20 June 2024

Answering services ensure no call goes unanswered for businesses, even outside regular hours. They offer features like call routing, message taking, and appointment scheduling. Costs vary based on pricing models, service levels, and factors like call volume and customization.

Common Pricing Models

Model Description
Per-Minute Billing Pay for actual call duration ($0.50 - $1.50/min)
Package Plans Fixed monthly fee for set minutes/services
Flat Monthly Rate Fixed rate regardless of usage (ideal for predictable volumes)

Top Answering Services

1. Numa


  • Flat $149/month per location
  • 24/7 text answering and virtual receptionist
  • AI-powered automatic responses and booking automation

2. Moneypenny


  • Monthly call plans based on call volume
  • 24/7 telephone answering with customized greetings
  • Message taking, call transfers, VIP caller status

3. Ruby Receptionists

Ruby Receptionists

  • Plans start at $135/month based on minutes
  • 24/7 live call answering and call transfers
  • Voicemail transcription, real-time customer chat

4. VoiceNation


  • Starts at $50 for 30 minutes, discounts for annual plans
  • 24/7 live answering, bilingual receptionists
  • Order processing, event registration

5. MyReceptionist


  • Pricing varies based on usage
  • Online scheduling, appointment reminders
  • Secure messaging, customized call handling

Quick Comparison

Service Pricing Model Key Features
Numa Flat $149/month Text answering, virtual receptionist, AI automation
Moneypenny Monthly call plans 24/7 phone answering, customized greetings
Ruby Receptionists Plans from $135/month Live answering, call transfers, voicemail transcription
VoiceNation From $50 for 30 mins Bilingual support, order processing, event registration
MyReceptionist Usage-based Online scheduling, appointment reminders, secure messaging

Answering services offer 24/7 availability, professional service, and efficient call handling. However, they may provide an impersonal experience, have limited business knowledge, and depend on technology. Carefully evaluate your needs to select the right service for seamless customer interactions.

1. Numa

Numa is a popular answering service that uses text messaging instead of traditional phone calls to respond to customer inquiries.

Pricing Model

Numa charges a flat monthly rate of $149 per location, with no additional fees. This rate covers unlimited usage, messages, and calls.


Numa's key features include:

Feature Description
24/7 Text Answering Customers can send text messages anytime, and Numa will respond.
Virtual Receptionist Numa's AI technology acts as a virtual receptionist, handling customer inquiries.
Automatic Responses Numa can automatically respond to common questions and requests.
Booking Automation Customers can book appointments or services through Numa's text messaging system.
Staff Notes Numa can share notes and information with your staff.
Multi-Language Support Numa can communicate with customers in multiple languages.

Numa's AI technology learns about your business over time, allowing it to provide more accurate and personalized responses to customers. The platform integrates with existing business systems, making it a convenient option for businesses of all sizes.

With its flat monthly rate and advanced features, Numa is a cost-effective answering service solution for businesses with predictable call volumes.

2. Moneypenny

Moneypenny is a UK-based telephone answering service that offers a cost-effective solution for businesses of all sizes. Their Telephone Answering app provides a professional and personalized service to ensure you never miss a call.

Pricing Model

Moneypenny's pricing is based on the number of calls you receive. They offer monthly call plan packages, and you can get a quote to find the right plan for your business. There are no long-term contracts, and you can cancel your subscription with a 30-day notice.


Feature Description
24/7 Telephone Answering Receptionists answer calls 24/7.
Customized Greetings Moneypenny creates a customized greeting for your business.
Message Taking Receptionists take messages and send them to you via email or text.
Call Transfer Calls can be transferred to you or your team members.
VIP Caller Status Set a VIP status for important clients or contacts.
Integration Integrates with popular CRM systems and other business tools.

With Moneypenny, you can enjoy a professional and personalized telephone answering service that helps build a strong reputation and improve customer satisfaction.


3. Ruby Receptionists

Ruby Receptionists is a popular answering service that provides 24/7 live call answering for businesses of all sizes across various industries like legal, healthcare, home services, and finance.

Pricing Model

Ruby Receptionists offers subscription plans starting from $135 per month. The pricing is based on the number of receptionist minutes you need. You can upgrade or downgrade your plan as your business needs change.


Ruby Receptionists offers the following key features:

Feature Description
24/7 Live Answering Receptionists answer calls around the clock, ensuring no customer inquiry goes unanswered.
Call Transfers Calls can be transferred to you or your team members, connecting customers to the right person.
Voicemail Transcription Voicemails are transcribed and sent via email or text, allowing you to respond promptly.
Real-time Customer Chat Engage in direct, instant messaging with customers, providing quick support.
Reporting/Analytics View and track metrics to make data-driven decisions for improving your business.

With Ruby Receptionists, you can enjoy a professional and personalized answering service that helps build a strong reputation and improve customer satisfaction.

4. VoiceNation

VoiceNation is a 24/7 answering service that aims to make callers feel like they're speaking to someone in your office, rather than a remote virtual assistant. They offer bilingual receptionists and can process orders, ensuring your sales continue even when your office is closed.

Pricing Model

VoiceNation's service starts at $50 for 30 minutes, with discounted rates when you pay annually. They also offer a free 7-day trial.


VoiceNation provides the following key features:

Feature Description
24/7 Live Answering Calls are answered around the clock by live receptionists.
Bilingual Receptionists Receptionists can communicate with callers in multiple languages.
Order Processing Orders can be processed, ensuring sales continue even when your office is closed.
Event Registration and Management Receptionists can handle event registrations and manage event-related inquiries.
Reliable Experience VoiceNation aims to provide a seamless and consistent experience for callers.

With VoiceNation, you can ensure your business never misses a call or potential sale, even outside regular office hours.

5. MyReceptionist

MyReceptionist is a phone answering service for businesses. Their receptionists answer your calls, gather details, and forward the information to you based on your instructions.


MyReceptionist's pricing likely varies based on the number of minutes used and features needed.


Feature Description
Online Scheduling Schedule appointments and manage your calendar.
Appointment Reminders Get reminders for upcoming appointments and events.
Secure Messaging Communicate securely with clients and team members.
Customized Call Handling Define how calls should be handled for your business.

With MyReceptionist, you can provide a professional phone experience that improves customer satisfaction.

Pros and Cons of Answering Services

Answering services can be helpful for businesses, but they also have some drawbacks. Here's a breakdown of the advantages and disadvantages:


Benefit Description
24/7 Availability Answering services ensure your business is always accessible to customers, even outside regular hours.
Cost-Effective Outsourcing call handling can be cheaper than hiring and training in-house staff.
Professional Service Trained operators maintain a professional tone, enhancing your business's reputation.
Efficient Call Handling Callers' needs are addressed efficiently, reducing wait times and frustration.
Scalability Answering services can handle high call volumes, making them ideal for businesses with fluctuating demand.


Drawback Description
Impersonal Experience Callers may not appreciate speaking with a different representative each time they call.
Limited Business Knowledge Operators may not fully understand the nuances of your business or industry, leading to potential misunderstandings.
Technology Dependence Technical issues can disrupt service, causing inconvenience to callers.
Customization Limits Some answering services may not offer the level of customization your business requires.

Final Thoughts

Answering services can be helpful for businesses of all sizes. By outsourcing call handling, companies can:

  • Reduce costs instead of hiring in-house staff
  • Ensure customers can reach them at any time, even outside regular hours
  • Provide a professional experience that improves satisfaction

However, there are also some drawbacks to consider:

Potential Downside Description
Impersonal Experience Callers may speak to a different person each time
Limited Business Knowledge Operators may not fully understand your industry or services
Technical Issues Service disruptions can inconvenience callers
Customization Limits Some services may not offer the level of customization needed

When choosing an answering service, businesses should carefully evaluate their specific needs. Selecting the right service ensures efficient call handling and a seamless customer experience.

Overall, answering services streamline operations and increase availability to customers. By understanding costs and comparing options, businesses can make informed decisions that benefit their bottom line.


What is the best live phone answering service?

There are several good live phone answering services available. Here are some top options:

Service Description
AnswerConnect Highly rated overall service
Specialty Answering Service Good value for money
VoiceNation Offers bilingual call answering
PATLive Provides virtual receptionist services
Davinci Suitable for remote companies
MAP Communications Offers custom scripting

When choosing a service, consider factors like:

  • Cost
  • Features offered (e.g., bilingual support, custom scripting)
  • Integration with your existing systems

Think about the types of calls you need to handle and any specific requirements you have. This will help you find the best live phone answering service for your business.

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