7 Best and Most Innovative Virtual Receptionist Services in 2021

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The best and most innovative virtual receptionist services of 2021 might not be the biggest or the most well-known virtual receptionist service – but this year’s crop of agencies are some of the top in their fields and are really bringing some new tech and strategies to ensure that their clients are able to grow their business from anywhere and at all hours of the day.

When considering who made the list and who didn’t, we tried to consider a business holistically and from the perspective of their potential clients. We investigated their tech stacks using the magic of the internet and even checked out their online reviews from past clients.

This helped us to whittle the list down to some outstanding contenders who are changing the game in the virtual receptionist space with their innovative and modern strategies.

Best Overall Virtual Receptionist Services

Pat Live

Pat Live is one of the bigger players in the virtual receptionist market, so we would be remiss if they hadn’t been included. But the real stand out that led us to rank them among the top services is their high number of great reviews online. Most clients that work with them seem to be very happy with the services they provide. With 24/7 support and plans that start at only $39/month, they provide some great coverage while being at a price point that is affordable for most businesses.

Back Office Betties 

Back Office Betties is one of the top-ranked best virtual receptionist companies as ranked by Clutch. And that’s no small feat! They are one of the top agencies that specialize in the legal sector and even have bilingual receptionists to answer phone calls in Spanish if you have a large Spanish client base. While their virtual receptionist services are available on a more limited Monday – Friday from 6am to 5pm PST (9am – 8pm EST) schedule, this means that they are able to keep a lower overhead and pass that savings (and quality) on to their clients.

Most Innovative Virtual Receptionist Services

Donna Digital

We’re obviously biased a bit in this one as it’s us! Donna Digital Receptionists was designed from day one to be one of the most innovative virtual receptionist services on the market. We structured our pricing so that you always know what you’re going to be charged (we’re the only flat-rate virtual receptionist on the market), made sure that privacy was forefront, and implemented all the best tech tools to ensure that we could provide the best experience for our customers. We also offer a free trial so that you can see what all the hype is about before you ever have to pull out a credit card. Learn more and get started here.


Smith.ai is a natural fit for one of the most innovative virtual receptionist companies. C’mon, AI is in their name! They have been one of the top rankings on G2 for a while and it’s in no small part due to the artificial intelligence systems that they have been able to implement. Because of the tech layer that sits on top of the human layer, they have been able to scale faster than many of the other companies on the market. They are available 24/7 and start at $210/mo for 30 calls. 

Best Virtual Receptionist Services for Lawyers

Epic Receptionists

Epic Receptionists is a new company on the market, based out in Chicago,  and they are taking the world by storm. With a top-notch client service team and superior training in call handling, Epic Receptionists are one of the only virtual receptionist services for lawyers that we would feel comfortable recommending. Their services start at just $99/month and offer discounts for quarterly or semi-annual billing.


Lex is one of the OG legal virtual receptionist companies. They know this industry inside and out, and exclusively service the legal industry. This deep sector experience has given them the reputation of being THE go-to virtual receptionist company for lawyers. Their plans are hidden behind a contact form, but we understand that they are quite affordable for a firm that wants to enhance (link blog post) their reputation and image.

Best Virtual Receptionist Service for Real Estate

Call Porter

When it comes to the real estate industry, there are really only a few virtual receptionist companies that are serious contenders. Most virtual receptionist companies service so many different industries that the longer call times needed for a real estate agent or investor just aren’t that profitable, which means that they rush callers off the phone or fail to collect all of the necessary information that a good real estate virtual receptionist would need to successfully capture a lead for their client. 

Enter Call Porter. They exclusively work with real estate investors and use just one formula call answering script to ensure that they generate leads for their clients on a consistent basis and get all the necessary information to run the numbers on possible deals. (Obviously, this still leaves out real estate agents, but Donna Digital Receptionists has a dedicated real estate service that can help you out if you’re in this bucket.)

How to Choose a Virtual Receptionist

So now you hopefully have a shortlist of potential virtual receptionist companies that you think might be good options for your business, now it’s time to whittle them down and pick the best virtual receptionist company for your needs. 

One of the first things to compare potential virtual receptionist vendors on is their hours of coverage – do they cover the working hours that you are open? Do they have extended hours so that you can capture leads outside of normal working hours?

For some industries, this isn’t a high priority as your leads won’t be calling at 10pm, but for something like an emergency plumbing service this could be a critical part of your business.

Next, evaluate how they bill their plans. Do they charge a monthly fee plus a per-minute cost? Do they have additional fees for going over your monthly allotment? How do they handle overage and call-handling times?

One of the dirty secrets of the virtual receptionist industry is that the price published on the website is rarely the price you will actually pay at the end of the month. Looking for a virtual receptionist service that charges a flat monthly fee (like us!) or at least one that is very transparent in their pricing policies will help you to plan and budget for your virtual receptionist expense.

Finally, consider the geography and industry skills of the receptionists who will be handling your calls. Are they native English speakers? This may not be an issue if they have a strong command of the language, but maybe this matters to you.

If you are in a specialized industry like law or finance, perhaps having a strong background in the jargon and terms of your industry will be an important factor.

Whoever you choose to be your virtual receptionist vendor, make sure to take some time in selecting to ensure a good fit and strong competence for your sector. Your virtual receptionist will be the face and first impression of your business to potential clients, so make sure that you take the proper time to make a wise selection.

If you’d like to see how powerful adding a virtual receptionist to your business can be, click the button below to give Donna Digital a free trial and get started right away!

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