When Redbox texts you a five-digit code for a free movie rental, there’s a pretty clear understanding of what happens next. You either rent a film before the code expires or you carry on living your life until the next code appears.

But large businesses, especially their call centers, are learning that one-way alerts are not the way into a customer’s heart. They’re just a marketing tactic to get their attention. The only feedback Redbox and others brands using five-digit short codes actually solicits from a customer is the one-word reply: “STOP”.

So, how do you stand out in today’s competitive landscape? Simple – you give customers what they want, and today’s customer wants the ability to text your business back.

We’re talking about two-way texting where, if an issue or question pops into a customer’s head, they can simply text the organization’s current phone number and receive an answer from a human on the other end. Just like they would do if they were asking a friend.

A RingCentral survey found that 91% of customers, to be specific, prefer texting to voicemail. And 78% of those surveyed wanted the ability to text the business back.

In the same vein, the Global Messaging Consumer Report of 2016 found that 9 out of 10 customers want their conversations with businesses to happen over text.

Businesses who are still using Short Code SMS texting in 2019 will sour the customer experience and only annoy customers who aren’t able to respond.

Textel, a business texting service for contact centers, examined the difference between SMS Short Codes and SMS Long Codes earlier this year and found that customers are already texting existing call center phone numbers trying to get ahold of someone. If the call center has not text-enabled their phone numbers, then these customer texts are never received. (Check out this special business texting case study that outlines the impressive results Vera Bradley, an exclusive designer brand, encountered when they enabled two-way texting on their existing call center phone number and discovered their customers had already been trying to text them..)

Textel has often shown why customers want to text your business. Not only that, but call centers can cut costs as SMS Long Code is 5x less expensive than Short Code SMS, while being incredibly more efficient and well-received.

Plus, with two-way texting, your enterprise call center can keep a record of communication that stays attached to each customer’s account. When they reach back out to ask another question or schedule another appointment, businesses can route that text back to the original call center agent who will they spoke with last, providing that special element of delight that easily improves the customer experience.

In 2019, the unofficial age of robot calling and interruptive voicemail messages, two-way texting is rapidly expanding. It’s simple, stress-free and allows us to go about our day while talking to a call center.

Go beyond expensive, vanity short codes and start connecting with customers through their preferred channels. Discover how Textel can bolt on to your existing enterprise call center platform and create the two-way texting solution your customers are looking for.

Contact Textel for a risk-free offer today!