November 1, 2018

Customers Want to Text Your Business, And Get Texts Back from You

We send five texts for every one call.

Still, many businesses are yet to adopt a texting strategy for their customer communication. And while it may seem that most texts are just confirming with family members what they need from the store, small businesses have actually reported a 40% higher sales conversion from using text than those who do not. Bottom line: It gets results.

These findings are compliments of The State of Two-Way Business Texting 2018 study that tapped 500 consumers and 250 small businesses for their attitudes and practices as they relate to two-way business texting.

Textel has often affirmed an additional finding from the study that opening a texting channel with your business line improves the customer experience.  Texting creates a more streamlined and personal communication connection with the customer that directly affects their perception of your brand.

All reports, trends and consumer behavior point to their desire to text with you

And often the feeling is mutual. Over half of consumers and business owners want to text with each other more often, as reported by 56% of consumers and 53% of small business owners. With texts being read within the first 3 minutes 90% of the time, it’s getting more and more dangerous for businesses to ignore this communication channel.

And it’s not new. Back in 2012, a RingCentral survey revealed that 91% prefer a text to a voicemail. Of that same group, 78% wished that they could text the business back. As the business world continues to reward the more agile company who best eliminates friction between their customers and their ability to communicate with each other, text remains a critical component of the Omni channel call center solution.

Widespread consumer demand for texting contact centers crosses all demographics.

Consider this: 71% of 30 to 44 year olds want the opportunity to text a business more frequently and that goes for 65% of 18 to 29 year olds. Millennials send 67 text messages on average each day with friends and family, but older customers follow close behind. Why? Because texting is easy. It doesn’t interrupt what you’re doing and it operates on your time.

This spells a big missed opportunity for businesses that aren’t augmenting their voice-based customer support with a texting channel that uses their existing phone number.

For customers who still prefer jumping on a call with a business call center, that real-time connection is often muddled by waiting on hold in real time. Once you reach an agent, there’s no guarantee it will be the right agent or department and you are almost certain to never reach the same agent again who is familiar with your case when you have further questions. For reasons like this, trends show these customers slowly adopting a text-first approach.

Leave the automated text responses to robots; customers want to speak with you.

For businesses that use text, it’s important to note the difference between SMS short codes vs. SMS long codes in call center communication. Our texting habits are a result of simplifying conversation with each other, but conversation isn’t possible with automated responses.

Don’t miss this powerful opportunity to connect with your customers on a personal level.

Use messaging history to keep their story close, and, when possible, route them to the same agent they’ve communicated with in the past to show you’re committed to resolving any issue accurately in the shortest amount of time.

Improving customer service improves your business.

Great customer service isn’t exclusive to the Zappos and Southwest Airlines of the world; it’s open to any businesses that identifies their customer’s preferences and responds accordingly. And customers are speaking out loud and clear: Business Wire’s study on customer communication uncovered that 89% of consumers want another customer service option. 79% are straight up unhappy with what’s currently being offered.

Remember those 78% of texters who wish they could just have a text conversation with a business? They’re looking for you to open this channel up and seize an affordable, simple mode of communication.

What’s holding your business back from a texting solution?

Learn how to easily text-enable your business landline by the end of the day for less than $100 a month. Textel’s monthly business texting packages have you and your customers covered.

© 2018 Textel