Text Based Customer Service Resources

Small, medium, or large company looking to boost your customer service team performance? Learn more about using SMS for customer service.

Leverage Messaging to Communicate with Customers

Successful businesses put customers first, prioritizing their experience above all else. That’s why customer service departments focus on agent productivity and customer satisfaction—two key factors that are improved by text based customer service. In our text based customer service resource center, you’ll find articles that explore best practices, case studies featuring various industries, and blog posts about the newest innovations in SMS customer service. (If you’re new to text based customer service, head to our business text messaging terminology page to review terms you haven’t seen before.)

What Is Text Based Customer Service?

Text based customer service refers to customer service conducted wholly or partially through texting. The term also includes SMS customer support, a more specific SMS customer service category that focuses on the proper functioning of a product as opposed to customers’ satisfaction with it. Through a text, customer service teams can carry out key tasks, such as relaying notifications, managing scheduling, resolving customer queries, conducting customer support sessions, and eliciting reviews. Additionally, SMS customer service platforms can receive and send messages through various channels, including third-party messaging apps. Most customer service teams use advanced SMS customer service platforms, often available in both web app and mobile app formats, to efficiently manage incoming and outgoing messages.

Businesswoman in office smiling at business SMS app on her phone
Close up of customer hands as they message with customer service team member

Benefits Of Using Text Based Customer Service

With business SMS, customers are empowered to contact companies from the channel they prefer—messaging. SMS for customer service comes with a variety of benefits for businesses, too. With a text, customer service teams can quickly resolve customer queries and send timely information, among other benefits.

  • Increased customer satisfaction, as customers can quickly send their questions through a convenient channel

  • Faster response and resolution times, as customers interact more quickly through SMS

  • Improved agent productivity, as agents can handle more than one customer at once

  • Sleeker feedback loop for surveys (such as CSAT and NPS surveys), as SMS has a higher read and reply rate for survey requests

  • More streamlined workflow and less data leakage, as business texting functions with existing business tools through SMS integrations

Channels Supported By Text Based Customer Service

SMS customer service platforms support multiple messaging channels, allowing customers to text your business from the messaging app they prefer. Over-the-top (OTT) messaging, which is messaging that works over data channels instead of SMS, is supported by most advanced business texting platforms. This means that customers can text your business from channels like WhatsApp, Apple Business Chat, and Facebook Messenger—and receive replies from within the same channel.

Omni Channel Messaging
Chart tracking number of customer chats resolved per day; horizontal axis marks days and vertical axis marks number of chats

Can You Track Customer Service Performance Via Text Messaging?

Tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) is critical for improving agent performance. Advanced SMS customer service platforms feature ready-to-use reports that are catered to SMS-specific KPIs, and can export data to integrate with email, voice, and web chat reports. While it can take some adjusting to choose which KPIs to track and analyze, customer service managers will find that SMS customer service platforms make it easy to gain insights into performance.

What Is A Customer Service SMS Template?

Customer service SMS templates are frequently used texts that agents can save within their business texting platforms and reuse later. SMS customer service templates or SMS customer support templates are most often used for initial customer query responses, appointment reminders, order notifications, and delivery updates. Merge tokens, which most advanced platforms have, enable agents to send personalized templated messages to lists of recipients by automatically filling in templates with custom field information for each recipient. These customer service SMS templates empower agents to send personalized messages at a fast pace.

Team brainstorms SMS templates on glass wall using sticky notes

Sample SMS Templates For Customer Service

Ultimately, SMS templates for customer service teams reflect the messages that your agents send most often. Take a look at each SMS customer service sample to see fully optimized templates, including custom fields information.

  • Hi {{first name}}, Joe here. I’m sorry that your {{prior order}} didn’t work, but I’d love to help you with your return! Can I have the order number?
  • Hey {{first name}}, Samantha from High-Flier Shoes here. Your in-store pickup is ready at our {{store location}} location. Let me know if you have questions!
  • Hello {{first name}}, thanks for your interest in {{product name}}. Your product expert, {{agent name}}, will text you back shortly. Reply with STOP to unsubscribe.

Key SMS Automations For Text Based Customer Service

With SMS for business, customer service teams can easily automate many of the simple, repetitive tasks they have to tackle each day. SMS customer service automations streamline workflows, allowing agents to focus on customer interactions as opposed to administrative tasks.

  • Autoreply with templated messages when customers text in, acknowledging receipt and informing them when they can expect a response

  • Route customers to the appropriate agent who can best answer their questions when customers text in with a given keyword

  • Send survey requests when customers are added to a particular list, such as a “ticket closed” list or “fast resolution” list

  • Respond to a simple query with a templated reply

Agent smiling while talking on phone and reviewing customer's business texting history on her laptop

SMS Compliance for Text Based Customer Service

When communicating via text, customer service teams must be especially careful about business texting regulations. They are relatively straightforward—but critical.

  • Secure your customers’ written opt ins, via submission through a web form or a text into a specific number, before messaging them

  • Clearly outline what services you will be providing via SMS, including when customers might receive texts and the general content

  • Tell your customers how to opt out of receiving further messages, and honor opt outs

  • Don’t message old or stale numbers to avoid texting reissued numbers

  • Ask your legal department for a comprehensive review of compliance requirements, considering industry, country, state, and company regulations

Best Practices For SMS Customer Service Agents

In text based customer service, agents have to strike a balance between a professional and conversational tone. When using SMS for customer service, follow these five best practices.
  • 1 Ensure your messages provide value to the customer.
  • 2 Keep texts professional in language and tone.
  • 3 Use texts for short, positive chats; use phone calls or emails for conflict resolution.
  • 4 Implement an especially positive tone, including occasional emojis to clarify meaning.
  • 5 Apply proper grammar and syntax, avoiding abbreviations or acronyms.
  • 6 Proofread and double-check dates, times, and other information before you press send. Texts cannot be recalled.

Best Practices For SMS Customer Service Managers & Administrators

Managers will find that text based customer service is an excellent avenue for increasing team efficiency and customer satisfaction. To make the most out of SMS for customer service, managers and administrators should follow these best practices.
  • 1 Set up auto replies based on time, day, and keywords to set expectations with customers.
  • 2 Determine unique KPIs for SMS customer service usage.
  • 3 Utilize SMS surveys with select customers to improve response rates.
  • 4 Use AI to filter out inappropriate customer messages.
  • 5 Update training techniques, empowering agents to loop in new agents via private comments for assistance in customer chats.

Boost Your Customer Service

Improve response times, drive up productivity and give customers a seamless experience on their favorite messaging channels.