SMS is the easiest way to communicate with customers, says data
When you make your pitch, you’ll have to be sure you’re speaking your bosses language and aligning the idea of adopting SMS with your contact center’s wider initiatives. So start with a few stats. Over 5 billion people own a cell phone with texting being the most used feature on the phone. SMS text messages have a 98% open rate and over 90% of the messages are read within three minutes. 65% of text messages sent by businesses convert. These numbers alone highlight the value of utilizing SMS in the contact center, but let’s dive deeper.
According to a Facebook Messaging Survey by Nielsen in 2018, 64% of people say they would prefer to message rather than call a business, and 60% say they are open to receiving personal messages from companies.
By the end of 2020, it’s estimated that 86% of people will have willingly opted-in to receive SMS communications from their favorite brands. Of those that have opted in, 64% want to be able to respond back once they’ve received the SMS message. What’s more, in our recent CX survey we found that the majority of C-level executives plan to invest in SMS communication in the next 12 months.
How SMS is being used for financial services
Now that you have your boss’s attention, introduce some practical applications for SMS that make sense for your own use case. For example, within financial services you might mention that many customers are willing to opt-in to receive messages from banking and financial institutions. 78% of financial services surveyed said SMS and digital channels would increase in the next 12 months. With the understanding that customers are willing to interact through SMS, how can it be a solution for your business?
Account notifications: With the high percentage of open and read rates, you can use SMS to remind customers to pay their bills, or notify them of an overdue payment.
Send notifications after every transaction: Send a notification after withdrawals, transfers, deposits and any other transaction.
Troubleshooting: Incorporate two-way messaging to solve minor customer issues. It can be added as an alternative to or even augment of your IVR when reaching a human agent on the phone isn’t necessary.
Marketing promotions: Share the latest offers or services with your existing customers. According to our 2020 Messaging Goes Mainstream Report, financial services use SMS the most for marketing and promotions.
General notifications: Send the latest banking or financial information like account updates or confirmations to your existing customers straight to their phones.
Two-step verification: Increase the security of your online banking by utilizing SMS to authenticate account access.
SMS banking: Perform basic banking functions, such as balance inquiries or fund transfers, through SMS banking.
How SMS can benefit your contact center
Customers are willing, and want, to engage more with businesses via SMS. It’s a scalable solution with many applications for financial institutions. Let’s add another layer of value for your business, specifically for your contact center.
- Cost effective
Sending SMS allows you to reach customers at scale. It is a communications channel that decreases the number of human agents needed to respond to customers, thus reducing the need for large contact centers.
- Agent efficiency
Customers can get their questions answered more quickly and efficiently through two-way messaging. Agents are not only able to chat with multiple customers simultaneously, but they can also collaborate with their colleagues to get answers to customer questions during the chat. This prevents the need to transfer a customer between agents and speeds up the resolution process. It also frees up contact center agents to handle other tasks.
- Increase customer satisfaction
No more waiting on the phone to speak with an agent. Available 24/7, SMS fits into a customer’s schedule, while improving resolution times. Customers are able to correspond from their device of choice and agents are able to personalize interactions based on messaging history.
SMS provides an easy way to request customer feedback. By receiving immediate feedback, you make your customer feel heard, while also learning ways to improve the customer experience.
You can also deliver customized messages, whether it’s to share relevant new product information or send a payment or balance reminder.
SMS offers the scale and value businesses look for when optimizing customer service. Improving customer experience, while also creating a more efficient system for interacting with customers and lowering costs, makes SMS an optimal solution for your contact center.
LiveVox is a next-generation contact center platform that powers more than 14 billion interactions a year. We seamlessly integrate omnichannel communications, CRM, and WFO capabilities to deliver an exceptional agent and customer experience while reducing compliance risk. Our reliable, easy-to-use technology enables effective engagement strategies on communication channels of choice to drive performance in your contact center. Our battle-tested risk mitigation and security tools help clients maximize their potential in an ever-changing business environment. With 20 years of pure cloud expertise, LiveVox is at the forefront of cloud contact center innovation. Our more than 450 global employees are headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in Atlanta; Denver; New York City; St. Louis; Medellin, Colombia; and Bangalore, India.