Best Practice

Customer care SMS, are you under utilizing it?

What are the benefits of SMS as part of your omnichannel contact center?

A man on his phone using SMS whilst leaning against his bike

In order to adopt the mindset of a customer-first organization, we should first recognize our own behaviors as customers and individuals. Within our personal lives, SMS beats most other means of communication when it comes to preference of use. 75% of people aged 44 and below prefer contacting businesses via SMS for customer service rather than utilizing phone or email. Yet despite our overwhelming preference for texting, most businesses have not yet realized the potential use cases.

Advantages of SMS as a customer service channel

Let’s look at some of the reasons why SMS is a strong channel:

  • It’s low-tech. Grandparents can understand it, individuals that don’t have smartphones can access it. An SMS enabled contact center means you can reach demographics that you might otherwise be missing.
  • Messages are short and sharp. Usually, there is minimal fluff in a text message. SMS is likely the channel that is the most respectful of our time – we don’t have to wade through paragraphs of brand storytelling to get the information we need.
  • SMS messages are checked more frequently than email, with over 60% of people reading SMS texts within 5 minutes, thus enabling a real-time conversation.
  • Responding to a text message is easier than responding by phone or email. There is no need to dial a number and wait for a person and responding usually only requires clicking a link or typing a one word response (eg. “Yes”, to confirm an appointment).

How can SMS customer service work for your contact center?

Let’s look at the different ways SMS can be incorporated into an omnichannel contact center, based on its strengths as a channel. SMS is an ideal for when you need real-time communication with a customer and when the information that needs to be delivered is not overly complex. In most cases, SMS is an automated channel but it can also be agent-managed and communication can be for transactional purposes or promotional. Below are a few use cases for SMS as a customer support channel.

Transactional use cases (inbound from customer):

  • Checking timing on an order delivery from a retailer
  • Requesting urgent call back from a utilities provider
  • Requesting physical location address of a retailer or bank
  • Expert/Knowledge Base questions about a phone service
  • Asking the ‘front desk’ for assistance
  • Hotel concierge services

Transactional use cases (outbound from business):

  • Confirming appointments
  • Notification that order is ready for pickup
  • Expert/Knowledge Base Q&As
  • Request for feedback

Promotional use cases

  • Announce new product related to previous purchase
  • Update on timing for an event
  • Deliver a special offer on a product
  • Shopping cart abandonment

SMS customer service using Engage for Amazon Connect

Local Measure offers SMS as an inbound communication channel, included in our omnichannel contact center platform, Engage for Amazon Connect. This is just one of many channels provided, including Whatsapp, Line, Messenger and many more for agents to communicate with customers, enabling a real-time chat to resolve issues or enquiries. The platform utilizes Amazon Pinpoint for SMS, a multichannel marketing communication service. Phone numbers are provisioned in Amazon Pinpoint or existing mobile numbers can be ported over to Amazon Pinpoint with some lead time.

If you’d like to learn more about Engage for Amazon Connect, click here or book a demo today.

Want to learn more about how Engage can work for your business?

June 17, 2021

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