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SMS in Retail

Effective communication in the retail industry is crucial to business success. Retailers need to exploit every possible channel, especially in this digital age, in order to improve internal communications and develop the customer experience.

Customer Engagement

The cheapest and most effective method is the humble text message or SMS. It is available in every phone and research has shown that the immediacy and intimacy of SMS produces higher engagement and more timely responses. It therefore makes text message marketing a highly dynamic way to engage with customers to promote events, new promotions, product launches, new services etc.

Utilising SMS to provide customers with real-time updates on delivery times can also alleviate customer service centre enquiries, thus freeing up resources to concentrate on more in-depth issues. This approach also enhances the company’s reputation with the customers as they feel like they are being kept informed and looked after. Adopting a two-way communication channel, businesses also open up the opportunity to engage consumers in fun polls and shopper surveys.

Internal Communication

The other significant aspect of communication in retail is internal communication – making sure employees, partners and suppliers are fully up to speed with activities, orders and strategy. Communication between Head Offices, Regional Offices and Stores, even within stores, can be difficult at times, so devising a good communication strategy between all of these is vital.  SMS messaging is the quickest and easiest way to get information through - especially if it is an urgent matter - and also the cheapest - if bulk messages need to be sent out.

Benefits of SMS

There are a number of different ways that SMS messaging can be exploited to improve communication in retail:

  • Provide customers with delivery updates
  • Promote events, new products and services
  • Communicate cost effectively with vendors, retailers, channel partners and employees
  • Allow customers to get specific details (price, size, availability, etc.) via pull SMS
  • Monitoring of retail outlet staff and supply chain
  • Integrate automated SMS alerts with existing ERP or CRM application

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