Effective SMS Customer Service Best Practices

Oct 17, 2023 · 4 min read
Effective SMS Customer Service Best Practices

Delivering quality customer service is one of the most important functions of any business. With more customers finding text messaging a convenient option to get in touch with businesses, providing a reliable and effective SMS customer service system is now essential.

What is SMS Customer Service?

SMS customer service is a communication option offered by businesses through SMS/text messaging. It involves SMS/textual conversations between the business and customers, eliminating the need for face-to-face or voice call interaction. Text messages can be initiated by the business, such as sending appointment notifications, or by the customer, for example, through a click-to-chat by text widget on the business website.

How is SMS for Business Customer Service Helpful?

  • The SMS app comes pre-installed on all phones.
  • There is no need to install any additional applications.
  • It helps keep conversations short and to the point.
  • It saves time for employees, especially those multitasking and spending a significant amount of time on incoming phone calls.
  • Neither party has to dedicate 100% of their time to the conversation until it’s over.

6 Tips for Providing Effective Customer Service using SMS/Text Messaging

Here are the tips on how to provide excellent customer support through SMS/text messaging:

1. Take Customer’s Permission Before Sending Messages

Nobody likes to receive unsolicited text messages. There might be regulations in your region prohibiting sending unsolicited SMS messages too. If you have a physical location with visiting customers, it can be a simple paper form mentioning type of messages you might send and have them fill out their mobile number. If you have a website or social media presence, a similar online form would work too.

2. Allow Customers to Opt-Out Easily via Text Message or Keywords

Giving customers the ability to opt out of text messages can go a long way in preserving customer relationships. Allow customers to text back a keyword like “STOP” or “UNSUBSCRIBE” if they do not wish to receive current or future messages from your business. This also ensures that you are following legal regulations and best practices for SMS marketing. If you use an industry leading provider like Twilio with Sociocs Inbox, you already get this feature without any additional work.

3. Respond Quickly to Messages

The key to providing effective SMS customer service is to respond quickly. Customers want prompt responses when they reach out to a business, so make sure you prioritize customer messages, ensuring that your team responds in a timely fashion. This not only keeps customers satisfied and loyal, but it also shows them that you value their time and have their best interests at heart.

4. Be Precise in Your Response

A lot of the large sized companies have switched to automated customer service (i.e. chatbots, automated IVR etc.) While bots are great at answering repeat questions and AI is making them better, small businesses can have an upper-hand by providing precise human driven customer service. This should attract customers looking for straight-to-the-point answers, which if you think about it, who is not. Once your business reaches a volume requiring automation, you can always introduce chatbots.

5. Personalize Your Responses Whenever Possible

Personalizing your responses shows customers you are taking the time to understand their issue. Greeting them by name or including an empathetic statement in your message can make a big difference in building lasting customer relationships. Attention to detail shows customers that you are committed to going above and beyond, which can increase customer loyalty and satisfaction.

6. 10DLC Compliance for US Recipients

US carriers have introduced 10DLC compliance to identify spams and give priority to genuine text messages. It’s applicable for SMS sent from local 10-digit numbers, which are quickly becoming the primary source numbers for Application to Person (A2P) messaging. Complete 10DLC verification for your business for better delivery of your text messages.

Sociocs is a shared SMS Inbox for Twilio’s powerful SMS API. Check out our related articles:

Make your business more efficient by utilizing a trusted SMS customer service and support tool like Sociocs. Additionally, you can seamlessly integrate additional communication channels into the Sociocs Inbox, simplifying your customer communication process using a single tool.