SMS for Customer Service: Examples & Best Practices
By Silvana Lucido-Balestrieri
| 28. May 2024 |
Service & Support, Customer Service
By S. Lucido-BalestrieriSilvana Lucido-Balestrieri
| 28 May 2024 |
Service & Support, Customer Service
    By S. Lucido-BalestrieriSilvana Lucido-Balestrieri
    | 28 May 2024
    Service & Support, Customer Service

    SMS for Customer Service: Benefits, Best Practices + 8 Examples

    Looking to incorporate an impressive 98% open rate into your business communication? Consider integrating SMS for customer service.

    Why? Because when we get a text message, it usually appears right on our phone screen. There’s no need to open any apps. This makes the message more likely to be seen and replied to.

    This way, you can boost conversions by spending less time and money, thus increasing ROI.

    So, if you know how to use text messages in your strategy, they can be a powerful sales tool.

    Curious how to make the most of them? Then stick around.

    In this article, we’ll delve into the advantages and best practices of customer service SMS. On top of that, we have 8 text message templates you can implement straight into your marketing and communication strategy.

    Key Takeaways:

    • Integrating SMS into multichannel customer service is vital for swift and effective communication, enhancing satisfaction, showing commitment to customer needs, and fostering loyalty.
    • SMS for customer support offers several benefits, including cost-effectiveness, enhanced accessibility, and flexible communication. 
    • To effectively leverage SMS for customer service, there are several best practices to implement. For example,  actively promoting SMS service across various platforms and sending personalized messages.

    What is SMS for Customer Service?

    Via SMS for customer service, you can interact with your customers via text messages, all the way from their first questions to post-sales support.

    It makes communication between your team and customers much faster, as it doesn’t require as much time as calling or emailing.

    Here’s what you can use SMS for:

    • Order confirmations: When a customer orders online or by phone, you can send them a text confirming their order details (product, price, and expected arrival time). This keeps them informed and boosts your credibility.
    • Delivery updates: Keep customers updated on their deliveries with real-time texts, including tracking info and when they can expect it. This helps them plan and reduces questions about their order.
    • Appointment reminders: Send customers a text the day before their appointments. Involve date, time, place, and any other details. It lowers the chances of them forgetting and shows that you care about them.
    • Promotions: Send exclusive offers, discounts, or coupons to loyal customers or recent buyers. This way, customers will feel special and you’ll sell more.
    • Support: Let customers contact customer support via text. It’s easy for them to get assistance, boosting the chance that they’ll contact you. It also cuts down on wait times and improves resolution rates.
    • Account updates and alerts: Send information on important account changes, like subscription updates, payment confirmations, or security alerts. This keeps customers in the loop and helps them act fast.

    We’ll give you examples of each use case at the end of this article, just ready for you to copy-paste them.

    But now, let’s continue with a bit of theory.

    Why is SMS for Customer Service Important?

    The use of mobile devices continues to rise. Since 2016, the number of smartphone users worldwide has grown by 50%.

    And with mobile phones, there comes SMS. Thus, integrating text messages into your customer service is no longer just nice-to-have. It’s a must.


    Here are 2 main reasons:

    • SMS messages are a highly accessible communication channel, reaching all types of mobile devices. This makes communication with customers much easier.
    • They ensure direct, fast, and efficient communication. Text messages save  both customers’ and employees’ time by minimizing a need for calls and emails. Therefore, they are improving the customer experience.

    Benefits of SMS for Customer Service

    91% of consumers globally have already used an SMS service, or are interested in doing so.

    What makes them so appealing? We already mentioned a few advantages above, but there’s so much more to discuss.

    Let’s highlight the most impactful benefits:

    #1 Resolve Queries Faster

    77% of consumers reply to a text within 10 minutes, while only 28% manage to reply to an email within the same timeframe.

    In the same way, agents can respond more quickly to an SMS than to an email or call.

    Why? It’s simple.  People can send a query or a response wherever they are, even without Wi-Fi. For agents, it is also very easy to send a message while they are performing other tasks, especially if they have proper templates.

    #2 Make Customers Feel Valued 

    SMS makes customers feel special and here are few key reasons why:

    • They can be personalized by adding a customers’ name, so they feel valued and recognized.
    • They arrive swiftly, showing your responsiveness to their needs.
    • You can send special offers via SMS, making them feel special with exclusive discounts or promotions. 

    #3 Save on Costs

    Here comes the best part. Text messages help you save money.

    First, they tend to be cheaper than other forms of communication, such as phone calls. Secondly,you can set automated responses , which may decrease a need for human agents and cut labor costs.

    #4 Offer 24/7 Service

    Customers can message you whenever they want, wherever they are, giving them complete control over when they reach out to you. It means that they can reach you 24/7

    #5 Make Your Team Happy and Productive

    It’s easier and faster for agents to assist via text messages. As we mentioned, unlike calls or meetings, SMS don’t disrupt their workflow. This lets them concentrate on important tasks and reply when it’s most convenient for them.

    SMS for Customer Service: Best Practices

    Now that you know the benefits of using SMS, it’s time to make the most of them. 

    Follow these tips:

    #1 Promote It

    If you don’t advertise it, your customers won’t know you have it. Promote your SMS service across all platforms, such as your website, social media, Google profile, email signatures, newsletters, and voicemails. 

    Additionally, explain the benefits of SMS communication and offer a straightforward and secure opt-in method to give consent. Compliance is essential.

    To obtain consent from your customers, you can implement a system of SMS shortcodes. This involves asking your customers to text a keyword to your shortcode.

    For example, you could tell your customers to send a text message with the word “JOIN” to the number 55555.

    This method is effective because it is simple and requires little effort on customers’ side.

    #2 Send the Right Messages at the Right Time

    In SMS for customer service, timing, and relevance are crucial.

    It means that you must share information that fits the customer’s situation and send it when they’re most likely to see it

    Imagine that a customer is experiencing an issue with their online order. Sharing relevant information, such as order status updates or troubleshooting tips, can significantly enhance their experience.

    Moreover, make sure to reply quickly to any texts you receive, showing you’re dedicated to a great service.

    #3 Integrate SMS with Other Support Channels

    By connecting SMS with your other customer support channels, you ensure a consistent experience across platforms. 

    For example, imagine a customer emails you but then also sends a text message for a faster reply. 

    If you integrate text messaging with your other communication channels, your agents will see that the customer sent both an SMS and an email. This way, they can just respond via text without doing extra work.

    Some platforms, such as Zendesk and Freshdesk, let you manage multiple communication channels from a single interface. For example, SMS, email, live chat, and social media.

    But it doesn’t end here. Implementing multi-threaded conversations can increase your win rate by 42%.

    #4 Personalize Your Messages

    Customizing your SMS means tailoring your them to each customer’s preferences, needs, and previous interactions. Doing so will make the customer feel recognized.

    To fully personalize your text messages, follow our 3 steps:

    1. Gather information about your customers, such as their purchase history, preferences, and any previous interactions with your team.
    2. Divide your customers into different segments based on factors like purchase behavior, demographics, or preferences.
    3. Use the collected data to create personalized messages that resonate with each segment. Include the customer’s name, reference past interactions or purchases, and offer relevant recommendations or solutions.

    #5 Automate the Process

    There are some questions that people always ask, like “What are your opening hours?” or “Do you have this product in stock?”. Instead of manually answering each of those questions every time, you can create text templates and automate responses.

    This will  streamline your work processes and reduce response times.

    Additionally, you can configure automated workflows to send tailored messages in specific situations. This reduces the manual work and increases a chance of engagement.

    Imagine you have an online store and frequently receive questions about shipping times and product availability. Instead of manually responding each time, you could implement automated responses using text templates.

    For instance, you could set up an automatic message to answer inquiries about shipping time like this:

    “Hi there! Thanks for your interest in our products. Our standard shipping time is 3-5 business days, but we also offer express shipping options for faster delivery. For more details on shipping, please visit our FAQ page.”

    And another automatic message for questions regarding product availability:

    “Hello! Thanks for reaching out. To check the availability of a specific product, please visit our website and use the search function or browse our catalog. If you need further assistance, feel free to contact our customer service team.”

    #6 Teach Your Team to Use SMS Properly

    To provide a truly excellent customer service experience, make sure your team knows how to use the texting platform properly.

    First, your employees must know how to initiate and maintain conversations smoothly. This includes responding quickly to messages and maintaining a friendly and professional tone.

    Secondly, problem-solving is key. Your team should be well-trained to understand customer inquiries or issues and provide effective solutions swiftly and accurately through text.

    #7 Use SMS to Re-engage Passive Customers 

    Answering when a customer asks us a question is simple, but reaching out to them when they haven’t started a conversation can be very effective.

    For instance, if a regular customer hasn’t been around for a while, send them a text with a special discount just for them to reconnect with them.

    #8 Choose the Right SMS Platform

    Select a platform that is simple to use, quick to set up, and easy to understand.

    For example, sending messages via CloudTalk is very convenient and saves you a lot of time. You can create a brand new one or choose from a list of templates.

    Moreover, if you have customers worldwide, you can send text messages globally with no additional costs. 

    What did Nokia achieve by centralizing customers’ data and SMS with Cloudtalk?
    • 30% Increase in outbound success rates
    • 10% Increase in agent productivity
    • 25% Decrease in leads lost

    8 Examples of SMS for Customer Service

    #1 Order Confirmation

    “Hi [Customer], your order #[Order Number] has been received! Thank you for shopping with us. 

    You purchased: [List of Items]

    Total cost: $[The Amount]. 

    Expected delivery: [Estimated Delivery Date]. 

    If you have any questions, feel free to reply to this message.”

    #2 Appointment Reminder

    “Hi [Customer], here’s a reminder that you scheduled an appointment with us tomorrow at [Time]. Please don’t forget to bring [Any Required Items]. We can’t wait to see you soon!”

    #3 Feedback Requests

    “Hi [Customer], we’d love to hear about your recent experience with us! Please take a moment to complete our short survey: [Survey Link]. Your feedback helps us improve. Thank you!”

    #4 Delivery Updates

    “Hi [Customer], your order #[Order Number] has been shipped! Track your shipment here: [Tracking Link].

    Expected time of delivery: [Estimated Delivery Time].

    If you need further assistance, feel free to reach out to us at [Contact Information]”

    #5 Promotional Offers

    “Hey [Customer], we’d like to thank you for being our loyal customer! Enjoy 20% off your next purchase! Simply use the codeTHANKYOU20 at checkout.

    Shop now: [Website Link].

    Valid until [Expiry Date].”

    #6 Customer Support Assistance

    “Hi [Customer], we noticed you reached out to us. How can we help you? Reply with your query and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.”

    #7 Account Updates and Alerts

    “Hey [Customer], we’d like to thank you for being our loyal customer! Enjoy 20% off your next purchase! Simply use the codeTHANKYOU20 at checkout.

    Shop now: [Website Link].

    Valid until [Expiry Date].”

    #8 Event Invitations

    “Hi [Customer], we’d like to invite you to our exclusive product launch event next week! Join us for a first look at our latest collection and enjoy special discounts for attendees. RSVP now to secure your spot: [RSVP Link]!”

    How to Get Started With SMS for Customer Service?

    It’s pretty simple. Just follow these 2 steps:

    1. Check setup requirements: make sure that you have an SMS-enabled number.
    2. Adjust your call flow: Traditionally, you had to add messages to each call manually. Now, the system can send them by itself. It’s easy to do from the CloudTalk control panel. For instance, you can automatically send a follow-up message after every important call.

    Are you ready to embrace more agile, efficient communication and improve customer satisfaction? Learn more about CloudTalk’s SMS for customer service. 

    Click the button below.