On this page

Text Messaging (SMS)

What is SMS customer service? What are the best practices for providing customer support using text messages?

Published by
Sriranjani Aravindan
October 8, 2023

In a study conducted by leadferno in 2022, 37.6% to 44.5% of 2000 US consumers across all age groups cited text messaging as their preferred business communication channel. With the growing reliance on mobile phones and the ever-increasing need for instant communication, businesses have recognized the value of SMS for business customer service as a powerful tool to engage with their customers. In today's fast-paced world, offering customer support through text messages has become an essential aspect of delivering a seamless customer experience. 

In this blog post, we will explore the realm of SMS for business customer service, shedding light on its definition, benefits, and best practices. Leveraging text messages for customer support offers numerous advantages, such as convenience, efficiency, and personalized interactions. Whether you run a small startup or a large enterprise, integrating SMS customer service into your support strategy can help you enhance customer satisfaction, build strong relationships, and ultimately drive business growth.

Throughout this article, we will delve into the best practices for providing exceptional customer support using text messages. From crafting concise and engaging messages to ensuring prompt responses and maintaining a professional tone, we will cover essential tips and strategies to help you optimize your SMS for business customer service operations. By adopting these practices, you'll be well-equipped to meet the ever-increasing demands of your customers, establish trust, and surpass their expectations in the digital age.

What is SMS Customer Support?

SMS customer support is the delivery of customer care by text message, doing away with the necessity for spoken or face-to-face interaction. Businesses may efficiently interact with their consumers in a wholly virtual setting by taking advantage of text messaging's popularity.

It's remarkable that text messages have an average open rate of 98% compared to emails' meager 22% in a digital environment where emails struggle to get attention (Source - Gigaom). This data emphasizes the value of reaching out to clients where they are already engaged—via text messages on their phones. Companies may guarantee that their messages are not only received but also heard by their consumers by embracing conversational SMS customer service.

A contemporary option called SMS customer care allows companies to provide a variety of help via text message. The adaptability of SMS assistance makes it a useful tool for customer service, from straightforward inquiries like checking order status or account balances to more sophisticated ones like diagnosing technical difficulties or enabling transactions. By helping organizations to optimize procedures and effectively manage communications that don't need human interaction, automation further increases its value. SMS is frequently used in conjunction with calls, emails, and social media to build a whole customer care ecosystem.

sms customer service_app0
Power Customer Service Using Conversational AI

App0 offers a flexible no-code/low-code platform to enable enterprises to launch AI agents faster & at scale with no upfront engineering investment. Sign up with App0 for AI-powered customer engagement and enhanced customer experience.

Explore App0

Examples of SMS Customer Service

Order Updates

Customers can receive real-time updates on their orders via SMS, such as order confirmation, shipping status, and delivery notifications. They can also reply to the SMS for any inquiries or changes related to their orders.

Example: "Hi John, your order #123456 has been confirmed. It will be shipped tomorrow. We will send you another message once it's out for delivery. Thank you!"

SMS Shipping Update_SMS customer service

Appointment Reminders

Businesses can send SMS reminders to customers for upcoming appointments, such as doctor's appointments, salon bookings, or service appointments. This helps reduce no-shows and allows customers to reschedule if needed.

Example: "Hi Sarah, this is a reminder for your dental appointment tomorrow at 2:00 PM. Please reply 'C' to confirm or 'R' to reschedule. Thank you!"

Patient Appointment Reminder Texting_sms for business customer service

Account Notifications

Customers can receive SMS alerts for important account updates, such as password changes, suspicious activity, or billing notifications. This ensures timely communication and enhances account security.

Example: "Hello, we noticed a recent password change on your account. If you did not make this change, please contact our support team immediately."

account notifications example_sms customer service

Surveys and Feedback

SMS can be used to gather customer feedback through short surveys or ratings. This provides a convenient way for customers to share their opinions and helps businesses improve their products and services.

Example: "Dear Customer, we value your opinion. Please rate your recent experience with our service on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the highest. Thank you for your time!"

SMS Surveys_sms for business customer service

Support and Troubleshooting: Customers can initiate support requests or seek troubleshooting assistance through SMS. This allows them to receive quick responses and resolve issues efficiently.

Example: "Hi, I'm experiencing an issue with my internet connection. Can you please help me troubleshoot the problem?"

support and troubleshooting example_sms for customer service

Promotions and Offers

 SMS can be used to notify customers about exclusive promotions, discounts, or special offers. This helps businesses drive sales, increase customer engagement, and build loyalty.

Example: "Hello, don't miss out on our weekend sale! Use the code 'SUMMER20' for a 20% discount on all items. Valid until Sunday. Happy shopping!"

promotions and offers example_text message customer service

Benefits of SMS Customer Support

  • Messaging has been a popular communication method for years, with platforms like WhatsApp having over two billion active users.
  • While most digital messaging is 1:1, there is a growing trend of using messaging for B2C and B2B communication.
  • Consumer demand for messaging is high, with over five billion people sending and receiving SMS messages daily. Additionally, 52% of people prefer texting customer support over other communication channels.
  • Messaging is cost-efficient, with the average customer service phone call costing around $16, compared to $1 to $5 per interaction for a text thread. Implementing messaging services can also reduce call volumes and stress on customer support teams.
  • SMS customer support enhances customer satisfaction by providing a more personal and informal interaction. It also allows for faster and more accurate exchanges of information, leading to quicker resolutions.
  • Customers prefer texting for its convenience, as it allows them to reach customer support on their terms and without disruptions to their day.
  • Messaging is accessible to a large majority of the population, with 97% of Americans owning a cell phone. It also offers flexibility for sharing various types of information, such as PDFs, links, and photos, to expedite conversations.

Who Benefits Most from SMS Customer Service?

Customer service texting is a valuable tool for businesses across various industries and growth stages. Its scalability and customer preference make it a beneficial form of communication. Consider the following statistics that highlight the advantages of text message customer service:

  • 50% of customers prefer texting a customer support agent over making a phone call.
  • 61% of customers desire two-way text communication with businesses.
  • When it comes to asking questions, 41% of customers prefer texting, compared to 35% who prefer email and 23% who prefer phone calls.

Based on these figures, businesses can leverage customer service texting in several ways, including:

  • Addressing frequently asked questions.
  • Troubleshooting technical issues.
  • Managing customer complaints.
  • Dispatching orders.
  • Providing quotes.
  • Communicating service updates or downtime.
  • Requesting customer feedback.
  • Engaging in back-and-forth conversations.

By incorporating customer service texting into their operations, businesses can enhance customer satisfaction, streamline communication, and effectively meet the needs of their target audience.

How To Start Using SMS for Customer Service

1. Enhance customer relationships by sending personalized and timely messages

Establish strong connections by treating customers as individuals and tailoring messages to their needs. Text messaging allows for direct communication, addressing customers by their first name and providing immediate responses to their queries.

2. Respond promptly to customer requests for improved communication effectiveness

Email and phone calls can be slower and less efficient in delivering information and resolving issues. Text messages offer faster response times and convenience, allowing customers to engage in conversations while multitasking.

3. Automate the customer service experience with scheduled messages

Automate various customer interactions, such as welcome messages, payment reminders, order notifications, and sales receipts. Utilize automated texting applications or CRM software to efficiently schedule and send messages, enhancing efficiency and transparency.

4. Utilize autoresponders for instant answers to customer questions

Enable customers to receive immediate answers by allowing them to ask questions via text message. Set up autoresponders to provide timely responses to common queries, personalizing the messages and including alternative contact options.

5. Send appointment reminders and alerts to maintain customer engagement

Proactively remind customers of upcoming appointments, reducing cancellations or no-shows. Use text messaging services to deliver alerts regarding limited-time offers, inventory changes, new arrivals, special events, and more, driving customer interest and sales.

6. Collect customer feedback through polls and surveys

Efficiently gather customer feedback by sending text-based surveys with links to Google Forms. Use polls for quick multiple-choice questions and surveys for more in-depth analysis, allowing immediate responses and increased customer interactions.

7. Gather Google reviews to boost credibility and search rankings

Follow up with customers via text message, requesting reviews soon after positive interactions. Include a link to your Google Reviews page, increasing the likelihood of receiving positive reviews and enhancing your business's reputation.

text message customer service_app0 CTA

Best Practices of SMS Customer Service in 2024

Clearly Define Goals

 It is important to have a clear understanding of the objectives when offering customer service messaging. Identify your goals, such as cost reduction, employee productivity, and customer satisfaction, and prioritize them accordingly.

Choose Appropriate SMS Support Channel

 Selecting the right messaging platform is crucial. Evaluate various options like SMS, direct messaging on social media, and specialized commercial messaging platforms. Gather customer preferences and familiarize yourself with the unique features of chosen channels to maximize their potential.

Strike Balance Between Automation and Human Interaction

While text message automation is cost-efficient, personalized customer service is essential. Customers value SMS support that mimics the personal interaction of phone calls or social media conversations. Incorporate AI-driven chatbots for efficient query resolution, but recognize the value of human agents in providing personalized support.

Categorize and Prioritize Incoming Messages

Establish an effective system to manage high volumes of messages. Consider categorizing support requests based on customer value and urgency. Utilize chatbots to handle simple queries, allowing human agents to focus on high-value cases.

Utilize SMS to Collect Customer Feedback

Offer customers the option to provide feedback through SMS customer support. This encourages them to share their opinions in a neutral channel and increases the likelihood of honest feedback. Addressing customer concerns shows that their voices are heard.

Train Agents for SMS Customer Support

Ensure that your customer service agents are well-versed in using SMS and instant messaging channels professionally. While they may be familiar with the technology, provide guidelines on appropriate language and message features to create a positive brand impression.

Integrate SMS with Other Support Channels

Aim for a seamless omnichannel support experience by integrating SMS messaging into your overall customer support ecosystem. Unify channels and systems to deliver consistent service across platforms.

Follow Up with Customers to Show Care and Concern

Going beyond answering customer questions, proactively follow up with customers to demonstrate care. Reach out to customers who haven't interacted in a while, offering incentives or discounts to re-engage them. This shows your commitment to exceptional customer service.

Send Reminders for Upcoming Appointments

Leverage SMS support to send timely reminders to customers about their appointments. This is more efficient than disrupting their schedules with phone calls or relying on unread emails. Simplify the confirmation process with one-word or one-letter responses.

Minimize Unnecessary Case Transfers

Capitalize on the advantage of SMS customer support by conducting entire troubleshooting conversations within one channel. Enable reps to share images and videos, allowing instant replies from customers without the need to switch between different platforms.

Be Concise and Straightforward In Your Messaging

 Emphasize the importance of brevity in SMS customer support. Keep messages concise and to the point, avoiding lengthy explanations or flashy language. Capture key information succinctly to increase the likelihood of customers reading the entire message.

Promote SMS Customer Support Service

Once you have established a robust messaging support service, actively promote it to customers. Include details about SMS or IM support on phone call recordings, website pages, apps, and social media bios. Showcasing your commitment to excellent customer service helps customers recognize the support options available to them.

Tips for Integrating Customer Service SMS In Your Business

  • Automate Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): By automating FAQs, customer support agents can focus on more complex tickets while customers receive quick answers to common questions. For example, customers can text a keyword to your business number for information like store hours or return policy. Make sure to provide a way to connect with live support if needed.
  • Gather Regular Feedback: Encourage customers to provide feedback via SMS to break the cycle of silent dissatisfaction. Send brief feedback requests after purchases or interactions, giving customers an easy way to share their thoughts and allowing your brand to identify areas for improvement.
  • Proactively Inform Customers: Use SMS to keep customers informed about appointments, orders, promotions, and updates. Proactive communication keeps customers engaged and increases their average order value and retention without intruding on their day.
  • Integrate SMS with Other Support Channels: Offer customer service through multiple channels, including SMS, voice, chat, and email. An integrated, omnichannel strategy allows customers to communicate in their preferred format and improves customer retention.
  • Keep SMS Messages Concise: SMS is best suited for short, concise messages. When using SMS for customer service, highlight key points, including a call to action, and provide a link or phone number for more information.
  • Choose the Right SMS Platform: Select an SMS platform like Textedly that supports two-way messaging, extra-long messages, and unlimited users. A user-friendly platform simplifies integration with existing support channels and ensures efficient management of SMS conversations by your support team.


In conclusion, implementing SMS for business customer service and adhering to best practices can revolutionize your customer support efforts. By leveraging text messages as a communication channel, you can automate FAQs, gather valuable feedback, proactively inform customers, integrate with other support channels, and choose the right SMS marketing platform. These practices enable you to provide efficient, personalized, and convenient support experiences.

Automating frequently asked questions saves time for both your customers and support agents, allowing the latter to focus on more complex issues. Collecting regular feedback via SMS not only provides insights for improvement but also demonstrates your commitment to listening to your customers. Proactive notifications keep customers informed and engaged, building loyalty and satisfaction. Integrating SMS with other support channels creates a seamless experience, while concise messages ensure quick comprehension.

Choosing the right SMS platform streamlines operations, making it easier for your team to provide timely assistance. By embracing SMS for business customer service and following these best practices, you can deliver exceptional support that meets the expectations of your digitally connected customers.

App0 is a no-code, text-based communication platform designed to automate essential aspects of customer interactions in the loan origination processes of banks, credit unions, and financial institutions & customer acquisition & retention in e-commerce.

At App0, we have engineered a solution that seamlessly integrates artificial intelligence into text messaging. Our platform provides the following key features:

  1. Data-driven insights to enhance customer engagement.
  2. Accelerated Time-To-Market through no-code functionality.
  3. Robust enterprise-level security and compliance measures

Sign up with App0 if you are thinking of adopting SMS or text messaging as a channel for customer service for your business.

Power SMS For Customer Service Using AI

Move beyond traditional chatbots and SMS for customer engagement. Choose App0 to launch AI agents that guide customers from start to finish via text messaging, to fully execute the tasks autonomously.

See a Demo


Launch conversational AI-agents faster and at scale to put all your customer interactions on autopilot.

Download Ebook