Google launches CallJoy, a virtual customer service phone agent for small businesses

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Google is combining several technologies including virtual phone numbers, audio transcriptions, automated reporting and analytics, in a new effort to help small business owners better manage their inbound phone calls. The company’s latest project from its in-house incubator is CallJoy, launching today.  Aimed at the U.S.’s 30.2 million small business owners, the system offers a low-cost customer service agent that helps block spam calls, provide callers with basic business information, and redirect customers to complete their requests — like appointment booking or placing a to-go order — over SMS.

Any other calls or questions would be directed to the main business phone number.

Typically, customer service phone agents like this are out of reach for small business owners, but CallJoy is priced at a flat monthly fee of $39 to make the technology affordable.

Like other virtual customer service systems, CallJoy can greet the caller and offer basic information like the business hours or address, for example. It also frees up the business owner from having to deal with the ever-increasing number of spam calls which waste their time, and can move customers off of phone lines to complete tasks online, where appropropriate.

To do so, CallJoy’s virtual agent can