Imagine if you could send a message to all of your customers at once…and they actually open and respond to it. How? It doesn’t matter how many email campaigns you send to your customers, it still feels like only a quarter of them see the message. What’s another option? 

If you’re like me, the Promotions tab on your Gmail account is stuffed full with unread messages from business (nearly 8,000 for me — agh!). But, my text messages are all read almost as soon as I receive them. I’m not alone. SMS marketing texts have a 98% open rate compared to email marketing. And, as many as 60% of customers read those texts within 1-5 minutes after receiving them. That means that when you send texts to customers, all the hard work going into your messaging actually pays off.

Business texting and SMS marketing services guarantee better customer experience. Consumers today want convenience, flexibility, speed, and personal service. Texting answers all of these demands. As many as 75% of clients want to receive offers via SMS and 91% of consumers claim they’d opt-in for text messages from brands. That’s huge! 

So, how do you harness all of that potential and expand the power of your SMS marketing services? Read through these 6 tips to boost your customer experience and satisfaction.

1. Send Exclusive Deals and Offers via Text

One of the best ways to incentivize customers to opt into your SMS marketing services is to use texting as a way to deliver exclusive deals and offers. Send out text blasts to send promotions and info on sales. Or, pair your welcome email to a new client with a welcome text. This makes for a nice surprise. Include an exclusive offer as incentive for signing up and send the discount code or link via SMS. Your customers will appreciate the deal and will be more inclined to make a purchase. 

This is one of the most cost-efficient and effective ways to engage customers and boost sales along the way.

2. Let Customer  Book or Alter Appointments via Text

I’ve got phone phobia. I hate making phone calls, which is surprising considering I used to work in a call center. But, if I can avoid making a call to customer service or to book a doctor’s appointment, I will. Offer the option for customers to book and alter appointments over text. 

With this, you get rid of the hassle of tracking down customers to remind them of upcoming appointments by sending a quick text. You don’t have to deal with no-shows or scheduling phone calls and your customers will prefer the convenience. 

Instead, let customers schedule, confirm, cancel, or change an appointment by responding. Use simple keywords for customers to reply “YES,” “CANCEL,” or as the image above shows “C” to confirm and to ensure appointments are remembered and accurate in your schedule. If you offer two-way texting (which you should), your customers can also make edits to their appointment with a few texts back and forth with a customer service agent.  

3. Answer FAQs and Offer Service

Use your SMS marketing services to support existing customers. When you onboard a new customer or send out a mass text, give customers a way to reach out to you. Believe it or not, customers today don’t just want to receive texts from you, they want to be able to text you back. At least 78% of people wish they could have a text conversation with a business. Just as you would with booking and changing appointments with customers, extend SMS into your customer service and support

Assign a texting team to support customers, answer FAQs via text, and be available for help. Help customers know they can reach you by deflecting calls to text through your IVR or live chat software. Your customers will appreciate the ease and flexibility of the service and your call center agents will love the lowered call volume.

Read Next: Customers Want to Text Your Business and get Texts Back from You

4. Order Confirmation and Shipping Updates

It can be pretty scary to make a big purchase, place an order, and trust that the package will make it to your door. Especially with expensive items — a new mattress, a kitchen appliance, a TV — I’m much more anxious about online orders and shipping. You hear horror stories about items never making it, or getting stolen from off a porch. Relieve that stress and open communications with your customers with SMS marketing services. 

With an order confirmation, give customers the option to receive confirmation by text and get shipping updates along the way. That way, customers stay in the loop. They can see if that TV shipping from New Jersey is on its way and can plan their life around the arrival of their purchase. 

5. Build in a Personal Touch by Recognizing Special Occasions

Texting lets your business  reach customers in a personal way. As I said before, customers are much more likely to see and open a message received by text. You can reach that phone that’s always in their back pocket to help them feel seen and remembered by you. 

Just as you would with a welcome offer, send out texts to recognize special occasions. Give customers an exclusive deal on their birthday or on the anniversary of their sign up and let customers know about the gift with a text. Show your customers they matter by sending a little love by text. 

6. Gather Feedback and Reviews

How can you really support your customers’ experience if you don’t know what they want? Customer feedback and reviews are vital to navigate your future business strategy. You have to see where you can improve and assess customer satisfaction to understand internal operations and goals. And you have to know what they like and don’t like in your product to set your product roadmap. Then you have to know their expectations and future demands to create relevant content. Every part of your business needs customer feedback for future profitability. 

Ultimately, reviews not only have the power to influence consumer decisions but can strengthen a company’s credibility. Reviews have the power to gain customer trust, and they encourage people to interact with the company. In fact, according to recent surveys by BrightLocal, as many as 98% of consumers check the reviews of a business before engaging with it. And, 75% of consumers take into account the number of positive reviews before engaging with a business. How do you gather that feedback? 

SMS marketing services provide an easy way to gather customer feedback and reviews. Send out a simple one-step survey to assess customer satisfaction. Or, after a customer completes a purchase, shoot out a text with a link to review. Maybe pair the completion of those surveys and reviews with a deal on a future purchase to gain participation. You’ll be more likely to hear from customers and will get valuable insight to improve your customer experience. 

Read Next: The Easiest Way to Connect With Your Customers is Texting