Solopreneurs and small businesses are turning to virtual mailboxes in increasing numbers. But what are virtual mailboxes? They are office locations with impressive, professional addresses that businesses can use for listing their office address. They also often include other services such as mail forwarding, lobby directory listings, and access to fully equipped meeting spaces.
There are a number of reasons businesses should use a virtual mailbox. Let’s go through some of the most use cases.
1. Stop the Business Mail at Your House.
Having your business mail arriving at your home address can be a real irritant. Sorting through and separating personal and business mail takes time. And sometimes you may have more mail than what can fit in your mailbox. A virtual mailbox stops all of that business mail from coming to your home.
2. Make First Impressions Count—Professional Presence.
Businesses need to make first impressions count. It can happen in any number of ways—your website, initial meeting, email communications, and address. A business address in a subpar location creates a first impression that is almost virtually impossible to erase. Some virtual mailbox solutions like Davinci Virtual Office give businesses a professional address in a location, including a lobby directory listing, that garners respect—one a solopreneur or small business typically cannot afford.
3. Use for Business Licensing and Registration.
Business licensing and registration requires a physical mailing address for the registered agent. If you’re using your home address for your business, this means it gets published. It also means that your customers have your home address, something many businesses may not want them to know. And in certain cases, you may not be able to use your home address—some home owners’ associations (HOA) prohibit business addresses and some municipalities have zoning regulations that prevent home owners from running a commercial business with their home address. Virtual mailboxes (addresses) solve these issues.
4. Connect with Search Engines and Internet Directories.
Getting recognized is critical for any business, and showing up on digital listings can be the difference between a business failing and one succeeding. There are numerous online business listings that a business must complete to be visible: a) Google My Business, b) Facebook Professional Services, c) Yelp for Business, d) Yahoo Local, e) Bing Places for Business, and f) Foursquare for Business, g) among others. (Note: As a reminder, make sure the information you put into all of these channels is consistent; inconsistency in details will affect your SEO ranking. The business categories you select also play an important role.)
5. Get Mail Receipt and Forwarding.
For some solopreneurs and small businesses, you’re rarely in one spot for very long. Getting your mail can be a real problem. However, as many virtual mailbox offerings include mail receipt and forwarding such as Davinci Virtual Office, this challenge can be eliminated. You can have your mail follow you wherever you’re at.
6. Have a Location to Meet Customers.
Some virtual mailbox solutions like Davinci Virtual Office also have physical offices available for rent. These are particularly important when you need a day office or coworking space to power through work without an interruption or when you need a conference room—with the presentation and collaboration tools you need, a lobby greeter, and more—for a customer meeting. Hotel rooms are bad ideas; they are often 50 percent more than rented meeting rooms. Coffee shops and cafes are noisy, lack privacy and fail convey the brand experience you want to provide customers.
7. Expand Your Business Quickly and Cost Effectively.
Expansion into new locations can be expensive if you need a fixed office for an address. Virtual addresses give businesses an alternative; they can expand into new locations by simply securing a virtual address. And if the virtual address provider also offers on-demand meeting day offices, coworking space, and meeting rooms for rent, then you have the option to use those when you are on site and meeting with customers and partners or simply needing to get some work done.
To compete today, solopreneurs and small businesses need tools that help level the playing field. Virtual mailboxes and all of the accoutrements that come with them are one of the tools you need in your back-pocket to do so.