5 Ways to Improve Customer Service With SMS

5 Ways to Improve Customer Service With SMS

What is good customer service?

Updated June 10, 2020

Good customer service is often praised as the secret to establishing and maintaining positive relationships between companies and their customers. As a business owner, is there a point at which you should be satisfied with the customer service offered by your company? What is the definition of good customer service? Since the system you employ to ensure a positive customer experience can always be improved, and will evolve with technological advances, it seems the quest for the best possible customer service might not ever be complete.

Wondering how to improve customer service? We’ve broken down some valuable customer service ideas to help you get started—including ways to improve customer service with text messaging. 

What is the definition of good customer service?

Improving your customer service is impossible without knowing what good customer service means to you and your business. When it comes to customer service, the difference between acceptable and outstanding can be difficult to define. What is truly exceptional customer service? Good customer service will not only satisfy your existing customers but entice others to check out your business due to your positive reviews and reputation.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a customer service representative handles complaints, processes orders and answers questions. They’re employed in nearly every industry and are generally required to have training in communication and technology. 

So how can text messaging improve or even replace this essential role in your business? Depending on your industry and company size, text-based customer service could simultaneously cut costs and improve your relationships with consumers. 

5 ways to improve customer service using text messages

Looking for customer service ideas but unsure of how to implement changes in your business? Here is a short list of ways to improve customer service to kickstart the process of integrating text messaging into your company customer service model.

1. Reach a larger audience

According to a government study done on the text messaging system, texts are under-utilized by companies despite over 2 trillion texts a year being sent in the United States alone. From health systems to department stores to restaurants, text messaging can be a valuable platform when it comes to communicating with your company’s audience. Accessibility is key to positive customer service experiences. Leveraging a mass texting service could be the best way to maximize your company’s customer service resources, as you’ll likely be able to reach far more people with important messages via text than email or phone call. If you’re considering this option (and you should), make sure that you find a service that send your text blasts via a short code. Short codes send at extremely fast rates and avoid the automated SMS spam filters that regular 10-digit numbers are subject to.

2. Offer exclusive coupons

It’s no secret that customers love to feel like they’re getting special treatment. When you build a text list, you’ll be able to offer exclusive deals to your contacts. Customer service includes reaching out to loyal customers to acknowledge and reward their continued loyalty. By building a list of phone numbers which have opted into text message communication with your company, you’ll have the unique opportunity to offer this list special discounts and “VIP” treatment. Keep customers happy by using text messaging to reward their participation in your text list. 

Make sure you’re offering valuable discounts when reaching out to consumers via text. If you communicate too much with information that they don’t find useful, they might opt out of your text list—not to mention associating your company with spam messaging. Consider the offers you’re sending to your contacts, and whether or not they’re truly worth their time. 

3. Maximize your human customer service reps with automated texts

Text message based customer service solutions is a cornerstone of SMS marketing and can answer general questions that human customer service reps would otherwise have to spend time addressing. It’s a good idea to keep human customer service agents available to discuss nuanced questions and deal with heightened emotional situations. However, agents often spend their time answering general questions which could be answered by an automated text

Our business texting features allow users to schedule, trigger and drip text messages to provide customer service to customers over time or as prompted. With this service you can automate a response to trigger questions, among other useful features. 

4. Proactively inform your audience

One way to improve customer service is to answer questions before your customers even have them. The way to do this is to keep a steady and informative flow of updates and important information to your audience. On a global scale, 5.5 billion people send and receive SMS messages. Since text messaging is such a widely used form of communication, it also serves as a casual way to keep your audience in the loop. 

According to a recent survey, almost two thirds of respondents reported ignoring emails at work. Because email is often easily ignored, text updates can be a great way to reach people on your contact list. By actively updating consumers with important news you’ll be able to avoid unnecessary customer service interactions—thus saving your agents for the interactions that require their attention the most. 

5. Request feedback via text

A powerful way to gauge the effectiveness of your company’s customer service is to simply ask how you’re doing! This is easy to do via text by sending a short text survey. While you’ll want to do this sparingly, no one has better feedback on customer service than past and present customers themselves. Consider reaching out to contacts once a year with a simple survey to measure their experience. If you can offer a simple thumbs up or thumbs down option to get maximum responses, this kind of outreach can give you a general consensus on how you’re doing. 

Not to mention, solid data on the response to your customer service efforts can be used as a tool for years to come. You’ll have a new metric which can be used to measure customer service progress as you make changes to better suit the needs of your public. 

Customer service to fit your company needs

Through changing economies, industry standards, technological advances and consumer demographic changes, customer service will be a crucial thread that keeps your business afloat. If you choose to improve customer service by utilizing text messaging, always make sure the changes are servicing your company and bettering your ability to communicate with consumers.