New York is considered the business capital of the world to billions of people. If you do business with this great city, you should set up a virtual office in order to have a presence there. Many online businesses have trouble finding the correct ways to reach out to potential customers and clients. Many companies rely on hot or even cold calling to reach out to their customer base. But, very few people answer a phone call from a number they do not know, or a number that isn’t in their area code, which spells lots of trouble for remote businesses.
A virtual office is a very handy thing to have set up because people are more likely to give your business more attention when they are searching for services or products if you have local contact information. In New York City, having local contact info is going to increase the traffic, enhance revenue streaming, bring you more clients and customers, and will help to build a solid reputation within that area. While New York City is the city we’re currently discussing at the moment, any city, anywhere in the world, can be the place to set up a virtual office.
With Two Ways to Set Up, Which Do I Pick?
You may start off in one of two ways:
1. Virtual Office Service Provider
You can shop for a virtual office service provider, which is a company that basically does everything for you and gets you everything you need to set up a virtual office.
You take the steps yourself to create a virtual office and hire one or more virtual assistants to run the virtual office for you.
There are pros and cons to each way. If you choose to pick the option of having a virtual office service provider do all the work for you, you are going to find that life is going to get easier for you. However, your wallet is going to take a hit. The cheapest plans from the top companies that offer these services start at about $100 per month, which isn’t a big bill, but some start-ups can’t afford that. So, if that is the case, they must go the DIY route with setting up a virtual office in New York City themselves, which isn’t very hard to do, and it’ll save money eventually.
I Want to Hire a Virtual Office Service Provider
It is quite tempting to want to hire a company to do everything for you, but is it worth it when you have to pay so much? There are simplified options you can go with, like basic mail plans that give you a certain amount of virtual mail items that alert you upon receiving it, a personal digital mailbox, a toll-free phone number (which you may have to pay per minute on), an app or website to track all your virtual office components to organize and keep track of everything, fax numbers, etc. Now, there are a ton of hidden costs within these services that will likely scare you away. If you don’t forward your real mail from them, they dispose of it after a period of time, but charge you a lot for it. If they shred paper items, you’ll pay at least $.25 for each sheet shredded. That amounts to a ton of money spent on unnecessary things. So, if you want to hire a company to set up and maintain a virtual office for you, do your homework and be sure that they aren’t going to nickel, dime, or quarter you to death. There are some good ones, so do some research on the internet and read over every plan, especially where it pertains to the fine print.
How to Set Up a Virtual Office DIY Style
Most business owners like to do things their way, so they opt for the DIY route. Here are 5 easy steps to take to successfully set up a virtual office in New York City.
1. Creating a Solid Strategy
You must be able to create a plan to know exactly what you need. This includes things like preparation, ample research, and then planning your strategy to work towards your goals. Ask questions like, “Do I need a virtual phone number from that area?” Yes. “Do I need a mailing address for that area?” Yes. “Do I need someone to handle calls, problems, and questions?” Yes. You need fax numbers, possibly more than one virtual assistant, and maybe even an employee that will handle all the other tasks regarding mail, callbacks, paperwork, etc.
2. Get a Virtual Business Address
You will need to use a real address in New York City, and this can be tricky. There are plenty of companies who offer services that will give you a New York address, but why not go the extra mile, and find an affordable service that’ll give you a very prestigious 5th Avenue address to receive real mail from, along with perks like getting emails when packages arrive, along with sender information. NYMail.com is a great resource for businesses to use to get great virtual business addresses. Also, your mail will be automatically forwarded to your actual address.
3. Hire a Virtual Assistant
This step is also tricky because you could spend all your time hiring a person, training them, having them quit, and running through the process all over again, all while you are the one who fulfills the duties of the job. This can be frustrating. If you can find a great hire, then go for it, but there are a few companies that will give you a virtual assistant that is professional and trained already, save for just a few aspects of your specific business model. You can check out Virtual Assistant USA, TIME etc., and AskSunday.com for more information about their virtual assistants and pricing plans.
Every business owner knows that training an employee can be difficult. It can also be super easy. Finding the right person for the job is the determining factor. Having a virtual assistant means they are employed remotely, which gives them freedom to make choices, and decisions based on your preferences. So, finding a seasoned professional is your best bet, but also finding a younger person who hasn’t been tainted by bad bosses and bad companies is a great option too. Regardless of the candidates, it’s important to be specific. Write down templates of instructions, procedures, and how to handle certain tasks. Be sure to update them on new policies and instructions. Have an open line of communication. They manage your virtual office in New York City so it’s essential that they’re properly trained.
5. Virtual Phone System Integration
The aim is for area clients and customers to be able to reach you (or, your virtual office), with a local number, by both phone and fax. You’ll need a service provider that offers virtual phone numbers, such as Global Call Forwarding. You can have your entire virtual number system ready in under an hour. You choose numbers for each department, as many as you need, and the pricing is based on how large you grow that virtual office.
Once you complete these 5 steps, you’re done! You can then start marketing, advertising, and letting everyone know your new and updated contact information for your new office on 5th Avenue, in New York City.