The businesses that thrive are not necessarily the most financially well-off, but rather the ones that are able to adapt to changing circumstances. Consider Blackberry, a company that was considered to produce cutting edge phones. Nowadays, the company has been overtaken by Apple and Google due to an unwillingness to adapt to changing customer preferences around touch screens and apps. Today, business owners are getting left behind by not investing in what is now a business essential: text messaging software.
As more and more customers turn to text messaging to communicate, businesses need to adapt. Let’s talk about why you need text messaging software and what the features matter to the customers.
Why business texting matters
Here’s why text messaging is a business essential.
- 85% of customers want to text brands
- Open rates for text messaging are close to 98%
- The average response time for a text message is 90 seconds
While phone calls and emails are by no means dead, they are oversaturated. Email inboxes are often stuffed, while businesses and customers are often stuck playing “phone tag”, calling but never reaching each other. Texts help to make communication more by reaching customers in their preferred medium.
It’s much easier to manage your texts when you have a text messaging software, but not every platform is created equally. Here are 7 features that your platform needs to have.
All your messages in one place
It’s hard to deal with customer interactions when they’re all scattered across different channels. Some customers prefer to reach out by text. Others will want to ask questions on your website. Then there are the customers who want to use Facebook Messenger. With all of these different communication methods, it’s just too easy to let a message slip away.
Make sure that your text messaging software isn’t just limited to text messaging. Get a platform that also allows you to do the following.
Mass Text Messaging
There are times when you want to text multiple customers at the same time. When the COVID-19 pandemic started, we saw businesses use mass text messaging to send messages like these: “Hey there! Because of the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re shutting down operations until April 15. We’ll let you know when we’re back in service. Stay safe!”
That means in a short period of time, a small business can let all of their customers know about important updates. It’s a great way to keep customers in-the-loop about your business.
Let’s be real: You’re busy. You can’t manage every customer interaction, so you hand off some of them to your team. Chances are that you’ll get a text message that you don’t have time to respond to. While you can hand off the text to an employee, how can you ensure that they’re managing the message in exactly the way that you want them to?
BirdEye allows businesses to use internal notes so that you can tell your employees exactly how to respond to inquiries. A short note like “Give this lead a pricing quote when he responds” can help you make sure your team is responding to customers effectively.
Consider using text messaging templates. A template is just a script within your software for dealing with common customer questions. For example, you can create a template for customer complaints that’s something like “We apologize for the inconvenience. We’d love to know more about your problem and so we can resolve it for you.”
Imagine this: You’re a contractor who’s doing a text conversation with a customer. They ask whether you’d be able to repair their roof. You could tell them that you could come over to their house and provide a quote. On the other hand, you could make the process significantly easier by just asking the customer to send an image.
Make sure that your text messaging software allows you to send and receive images. In certain situations, it can make customer interaction a lot easier.
Texting from your landline
Most people today don’t bother answering calls from unknown numbers. The same concept applies to text messaging. If a customer gets a text message from an unknown number, they might not bother to even look at it.
That’s why it’s important to get a text messaging software that allows you to send texts from your landline number – a number that the customer is likely to have on their list of contacts. As a result, the customer will be more likely to check your message and respond to it.
Review request texts
You can also send text messages to solicit reviews from your customers. Reviews are authentic social proof that both search engines value. Having great customer reviews not only means that customers are more likely to choose you, but it also means that search engines will rank you higher for relevant search queries.
BirdEye allows businesses to send review requests via text. Businesses have the option to automatically send texts on the same day as a customer visit. BirdEye review requests can link to Google, Facebook, and 150+ sites on the web.
The best text messaging software
If you’re looking for a text messaging software, check out BirdEye. BirdEye offers mass texting, team collaboration, templates, landline texting, and review requests in a single, easy-to-use platform. More than 50,000 businesses in 8 countries use BirdEye to stay connected with customers, send review requests, and grow business.