1800, 13 & 1300 Numbers: Selecting the best numbers for your business
All 1300 numbers, 13 numbers and 1800 numbers (known collectively as inbound numbers) belong to the Australian government via the ACMA (Australian Communications and Media Authority). When you buy a number, you're actually only buying the rights to use that number according to its applicable rights of use (as defined by the ACMA).
There are two types of numbers available:
- Normal issue numbers, which have normal rights of use (similar to the rights of use you have for your mobile phone number).
- Smartnumbers®, which are numbers that spell words or contain a pattern that makes them easy to remember. These numbers have extended/additional rights of use.
Getting a normal issue 1800/13/1300 number
These numbers are available directly from business telco providers, such as Alltel.
Even though many of the best quality numbers have been reserved as smartnumbers (or are already in use), there are still some good numbers available. Alltel searches through the list of numbers each day and reserves those with patterns or repeating digits for the exclusive use of our customers. (There are around 10,000 normal issue numbers available at any time.)
Alltel's 1300 numbers and 1800 numbers are updated every day, and are available for a fraction of the cost of a smartnumber. After you obtain one of these numbers, it remains yours for as long as you keep it connected (otherwise it must be cancelled). We also have access to all available 13 numbers.
Note that if you don't mind what number you get, Alltel can also issue you with a random number. These numbers have a much faster turn-around and are ideal for businesses who need an inbound number in a hurry!
Getting a Smartnumber
Alltel has a pool of available Smartnumbers that you may choose from and purchase directly from our Shop. Just follow these 5 easy steps
- Use the Alltel Smartnumber search tool to check the availability of your preferred number.
- If it is available for immediate purchase, click Select and proceed with selecting an inbound number plan, routing option, and add-ons.
- At the checkout, provide your details to complete and submit your order. Our solutions specialists will be in touch shortly to process your order.
- If your selected number is not available for direct purchase, select your preferred mode of contact (email, phone, or chat) and one of our solutions specialists will assist you in securing your number from ACMA.
- Once you have successfully acquired the rights of use to your number, contact Alltel to get it connected.
The extended rights of use you receive with your Smartnumber include the ability to on-sell the number, and to keep it unconnected for up to 3 years.
These numbers attract an annual government fee of $0.80 for 1300 numbers and 1800 numbers (which Alltel waives), and of $8,000 for 13 numbers (which Alltel charges at $7980 per year if paid in advance, or $848.84 per month). This government fee is in addition to connection and ongoing usage fees charged by your smartnumber carrier.
Note that there are some telcos who will offer to purchase your smartnumber for you, and then lease it back to you. Alltel strongly recommends that you purchase the number in your own right if it is available.
Buying vs leasing
When you buy the rights to use a 1300 number or 1800 number, you can keep that number for the life of your business. You can move it, not only from office to office as your business expands, but also from telco to telco if you decide to do business with a different provider.
When you lease your 1300 number or 1800 number from a provider, they are the ones with ultimate control. If they increase your monthly lease payment, or insist that you connect your number through a telco that provides poor service, you don't have many options. Your provider will typically not let you purchase the number from them, which leaves you with two choices: either keep your number and put up with the poor service/high prices, or else walk away and start over again with a new number and new provider.
You can find out more about buying and leasing in the blog post Should You Lease or Buy 1300 Numbers & 1800 Numbers?
Buying your 1300 number or 1800 number is usually a safer option. Your business phone number is essential as both a communications tool and a part of your branding. Therefore, it's important to have the same level of control over your inbound number as you do over your business's web site domain name.
Smartnumbers® is a registered trademark, held by the Commonwealth for the benefit of the ACMA.