News of the global supply chain affecting widespread shortages this holiday season began spreading earlier this fall, driving consumers to start holiday shopping as early as October. Ships delayed in port, driver shortages, space availability, and Covid shutdowns have led to the imbalance in supply and demand. While some companies are making significant investments to overcome this challenge, many small businesses can’t avoid the chain of events already set in motion.
The global supply chain shortages have hit manufacturing and retail companies, but all businesses should consider how they would respond given the same challenges. Unparalleled customer service is key to coping during times like these. Solutions by Text’s Two-Way Texting takes customer service to a new level, leaving your customers satisfied and loyal.
Talking in real-time with customers through Two-Way Text can be intimidating for businesses as they begin using this tool. With the proper training of your team and following these guidelines, Two-Way Texting will become a must-have tool for your brand.
- Get Permission & Respect It
- Set Texting Hours
- Respond Quickly
- Create A Brand Voice Guide
- Give Your Team Templates
- Keep Notes
- Dealing With Complicated Issues
- Use The Complimentary Close
Get Permission & Respect It
Before any text communication takes place, you must obtain consent. The type of consent needed differs based on the messaging taking place. When a customer texts you first and you respond with relevant information in a conversational format, the consent is implied. Informational text messages require prior express consent, and promotional messaging requires prior express written consent. Read more about compliance regulations or reach out to our team of compliance experts for help in determining the type of compliance needed for your messaging. No matter the consent level, it’s essential to provide your text message policy to customers joining this communication platform.
Set Texting Hours
Unless you offer 24-hour support, establish customer service texting hours. These should follow your business hours and be listed on your website and in your text message policy. Customer-initiated texts could arrive after hours when your team is not available. Set an automatic reply with your hours and when they can expect a representative to respond. Keep your boundaries in place to avoid upsetting customers and to give your representatives balance.
The average person responds to a text message 90 seconds after it lands in their inbox, compared to the 90 minutes it takes for email responses. Keep that in mind when you are communicating with a customer over Two-Way Texting. Long intervals in between messages can be frustrating for both parties trying to resolve issues. Complex issues need extra research time. Avoid delay frustrations by communicating your timeline and when they should expect a reply.
Create A Brand Voice Guide
Every brand has words that encompass who they are and what they believe. Create a power bank of these words and phrases for your customer service team to reference. Also, include a list of phrases and words not to be used during customer exchanges. Keeping a consistent tone in conversations will allow for seamless communication and strengthen your brand’s overall voice.
Give Your Team Templates
You can predict many situations when it comes to serving your customers. Having a library of templates for your customer service team will allow them to respond quickly and efficiently. Include templates for frequently asked questions, links to valuable items on your website, business hours, directions, return and refund policies, and mission statements. Give your team a leg up by including templates for how you begin and end customer service text exchanges.
There will be situations when a customer service exchange needs to be handled by more than one representative of your business. Keeping notes about discussions is vital to a clean chain of custody, and the SBT software makes this possible. Train your team to leave helpful notes for the next interaction to save time, show competence, and provide a frustration-free experience for your customers.
Dealing With Complicated Issues
Trends show that consumers prefer to text with businesses over talking on the phone, but if the customer service exchange becomes complicated or needs to share confidential information, moving support to a phone call could be necessary. Starting the initial support through Two-Way Texting will help evaluate the need for the type of assistance and allow setting up a customer support call that works best for the customer.
Use The Complimentary Close
While a complimentary close, like sincerely, is not required with all texting exchanges, adding finality when it comes to the end of a customer service exchange is welcome. These closures do not have to be the customary phrases and can be a chance for your business to gain insight into the conversation. End with a survey about their experience, or give them a link to helpful resources on your site. If you do choose a complimentary close phrase, write it out and avoid confusing abbreviations.
Two-Way Texting gives your team the power to excel at customer service. The current global supply chain issues may not be affecting your business this season, but it is still a busy time. Give your customers the support they need by opening new channels of communication.
Talk to the SBT team of experts to learn how Two-Way Texting can improve your customer support levels.