Cookie Preference Centre

Your Privacy
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Performance Cookies
Functional Cookies
Targeting Cookies

Your Privacy

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. This information might be about you, your preferences, your device or used to make the site work as you expect it to. The information does not usually identify you directly, but it can give you a more personalized web experience. You can choose not to allow some types of cookies. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings. However, you should know that blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience on the site and the services we are able to offer.

Strictly Necessary Cookies

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems. They are usually only set in response to actions made by you which amount to a request for services, such as setting your privacy preferences, logging in or filling in forms. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site may not work then.

Cookies used

Performance Cookies

These cookies allow us to count visits and traffic sources, so we can measure and improve the performance of our site. They help us know which pages are the most and least popular and see how visitors move around the site. All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous. If you do not allow these cookies, we will not know when you have visited our site.

Cookies used

Google Analytics

Functional Cookies

These cookies allow the provision of enhance functionality and personalization, such as videos and live chats. They may be set by us or by third party providers whose services we have added to our pages. If you do not allow these cookies, then some or all of these functionalities may not function properly.

Cookies used




Targeting Cookies

These cookies are set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant ads on other sites. They work by uniquely identifying your browser and device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will not experience our targeted advertising across different websites.

Cookies used


This site uses cookies and other tracking technologies to assist with navigation and your ability to provide feedback, analyse your use of our products and services, assist with our promotional and marketing efforts, and provide content from third parties


Here are some suggested Connections for you! - Log in to start networking.

Sefanaia Silimaibau
Supervisor Quality Assurance & Trainer
Marry Marsela
Public Relations
Jingga Wahyu Buana
Junior Officer Assesment, Diagnose, and Data Management
Sandeep Rangineni
Data Test Engineer

Can Your Small Business Afford A Call Answering Service? - PATLive - Blog

Can Your Small Business Afford A Call Answering Service?

We know better than anyone that small businesses often come with tight budgets, even as you’re starting to grow. You may be swamped with expenses that you never considered before starting up your own venture like invoicing software, liability insurance, and even pest control for your office if you have one. 

A small budget quickly gets pulled in a million different directions, and that’s before adding on “optional” costs like training, marketing, and employee perks that aren’t actually all that optional.

We understand, therefore, that many small businesses are struggling to manage the incoming calls they’re receiving but assume that they can’t afford a call answering service to help them pick up the slack.

So can your small business afford a call answering service?

While there are several factors that can impact this, the resounding answer is typically “yes.” In this post, we’re going to look at what to consider when deciding if your business can afford a call answering service, including the costs of the alternatives that you’d likely fall back on instead.

How Much Do Call Answering Services Actually Cost? 

Call answering service costs can vary dramatically, and it’s always important to choose a high-quality service. Customer service, after all, should be a priority for all small businesses; it’s not an area where you want to cut corners and suffer the loss of customers as a result.

Fortunately, there are plenty of great, reliable, high-quality call answering services that are also affordable. Many of these services will offer flexible plans, allowing you to use what you need and only that. Services like PATLive, for example, allow you to go month-to-month with no contract, and to be charged only for what you need. 

For example, take a look at our pricing structure. Our plans start at only $39 per month for a pay-as-you-go plan that acts as insurance in the event you’re not able to answer a call or it comes in after hours. If you have an idea of how much call volume you plan to route to an answering service, you may opt for a plan that has included minutes and comes with additional benefits like call transfers and lead collection. 

It’s a good idea to opt into tiered pricing models that reflect your current needs. You can choose a plan based on the features you need and the number of minutes you estimate using. The benefits of a tiered plan that allows for the purchasing of additional minutes, too, can save you money; you don’t automatically need to jump from $269 to $399 per month if you happen to need 201 minutes of call time instead of 200. 

With services like PATLive, you can change your plan as you need it. If you have a slow season, for example, you could downgrade your plan, and scale up again as needed. And if you only host an event once a year, you can upgrade your plan to include order processing or event registrations during the time period you need it, and then scale back again. This works for businesses of all sizes during all seasons of the year, and it starts at just $39 per month as a baseline.

Comparing Costs vs. Cost Savings & Profit Opportunities 

Plenty of businesses might see the cost of an answering service and think “well we just don’t need an additional cost”. Before you do this, though, it’s important to consider what you can save and gain by working with an affordable call answering service. These factors can absolutely determine whether or not you can afford to hire one.

There are two main factors to consider here. Let’s look at both. 

In-House Receptionist Costs 

Many small businesses will rely on in-house receptionists if they choose not to hire call answering services. 

In-house receptionists are great, but they do come with significant added costs. And while call answering service costs may seem a little pricey at first, they pale in comparison to the cost of an employee.

The average in-house receptionist salary is around $27,000 per year, but it can go up to $43,000 a year or more. You’ll be paying the base salary, plus employee taxes, potential health benefits for full-time employees, and the costs of added desks, employee accounts, and more. If your receptionist is paid hourly, you may need to worry about holiday pay and overtime, too.

When you compare this to our most high-priced base plan of $999 per month (amounting to $12,000 per year), the cost savings are clear. 

Even with all of these costs, your receptionist will go home once their shift is over, take weekends off, and have sick leave and vacation. And since customers call on all days and at all hours of the day, sticking with in-person receptionist results in a lost opportunity cost. Which brings us to factor two…

The Lost Opportunity Cost 

If you don’t answer the phone when a potential lead calls or customer calls, you may have missed your chance with them all together. Plenty of customers won’t call back and instead may even reach out to a competitor.

This is a huge risk of lost opportunity costs. Every call that you miss might be a customer that could have converted, eating into your profit before you know it.

With 24/7 coverage from an answering service, however, that is something that you don’t need to worry about. Whenever someone calls and your team isn’t able to answer it directly, we will. Agents can utilize personalized call handling instructions to let help the customer however possible, even if it’s assuring them that someone will be in touch promptly. 

Think about all the calls you might miss during off-hours, when your receptionist is at lunch, or even when they’re on the phone with someone else. That’s a lot of potential customers that you may be missing. 

All small businesses are different, and each one has its own unique needs and budget considerations. As a result, there isn’t one right answer for every business, but in our experience, many small business owners benefit greatly in cost savings and profit gains when working with call answering services.

Keep in mind that plenty of answering services allow you to do a free trial to see how it works for you. This can help you ensure that you’re comfortable with the decision, that the service is right for you, and that your customers are happy. Win-win for everyone involved.


Publish Date: July 15, 2020

2023 Buyers Guide Visual Communications

Premium Listing
SJS Solutions

Optymyse - Digital Employee Engagement
Optymyse is a completely new way to empower, engage, motivate and retain your contact centre, call center and helpdesk agents. Optymyse is a unique neuroscience-based approach which takes care of your most valuable asset - your people and is focussed on improving mental health, wellness, wellbeing, motivation, happiness and reducing stress in the workplace.


Co-Browsing Integration
Co-Browsing is the practice of web-browsing where two or more people are navigating through a website on the internet. Software designed to allow Co-Browsing focuses on providing a smooth experience as two or more users use their devices to browse your website. In other words, your customer can permit the agent to have partial access to his/ her screen in real-time.

View more from PATLive

Recent Blog Posts:
Can Your Small Business Afford A Call Answering Service?July 15, 2020
7 Things Every Virtual Office NeedsJune 23, 2020
10 Things Every Virtual Office NeedsJune 23, 2020
10 Answering Service Posts Every Small Business Should ReadJune 2, 2020
How to Personalize Customer Service as a Small BusinessApril 29, 2020
9 Stress Management Tips for Business Owners & Team LeadersApril 21, 2020
Who’s Answering Your Phones During COVID-19?April 8, 2020
Small Business Tips: Guide to Working from HomeApril 1, 2020
How Technology is Changing Customer ServiceMarch 18, 2020
6 Simple Ways to Create a Lifetime Customer BaseFebruary 19, 2020

About us - in 60 seconds!

Join Our Team

Newsletter Registration

Please check to agree to be placed on the eNewsletter mailing list.

Latest Americas Newsletter
both ids empty
session userid =
session UserTempID =
session adminlevel =
session blnTempHelpChatShow =
session cookie set = True
session page-view-total = 1
session page-view-total = 1
applicaiton blnAwardsClosed =
session blnCompletedAwardInterestPopup =
session blnCheckNewsletterInterestPopup =
session blnCompletedNewsletterInterestPopup =