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  • Writer's pictureJaime González Gasque

Why SMS Payments Are Crucial for Your Customer Experience Strategy

Updated: Mar 29

Customer experience is more than the experiences that customers have with your business in-person or with sales and account representatives. It is the sum of customer experiences with your business regardless of the channel. Your company’s willingness to adapt to evolving trends and meet customers where they are contributes significantly to customer experiences. Dave Lehman, president and CEO at Birdeye, shares how SMS payments can help drive customer engagement.

One area that is often overlooked when creating a positive customer experience is payments. Contactless digital payments have been on the rise due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is primarily because of its safety and the overall convenience of making a payment from anywhere. A recent study found that 65% of consumers. Opens a new window say that post-Covid-19, they would still prefer to use contactless payments as much as, or even more than, they are currently.

Providing modern forms of payment is no longer optional for positive customer experiences. If you want your business to thrive in the post-pandemic world, you need to understand the world of contactless payment and master it.

See More: 4 Ways Marketers Can Use Push Notifications To Increase Customer Engagement

The Future of Customer Experience: SMS Payments

SMS payments (or text-to-pay) allow customers to complete transactions via text message on their mobile phones. Business texting is rapidly being accepted as a preferred way for businesses to communicate with their customers. As part of text conversations, customers can ask questions, select a product, get a quote or invoice from the company and even make a payment. To get paid digitally, all that the business needs to do is send a PCI-compliant secure link via text that allows the customer to make the payment instantly. Through the provided link, customers can pay using credit or debit cards, Apple Pay or other similar forms of digital payment.

Text-to-pay improves the customer experience by accelerating the checkout process. SMS payments are a faster alternative to mailed bills and allow buyers to use the digital payment form of their choice. It also helps businesses secure payment faster.

One study found that 90% of all text messages are read within three minutes of their deliveryOpens a new window , and 77% of consumers claim they positively perceive companies that utilize text messaging. Due to the ease of opening and reading text messages, customers are far more likely to read a text over an email, meaning companies get paid faster and easier. With 85% of Americans owning smartphonesOpens a new window , businesses that don’t leverage mobile miss out on a major opportunity to improve the customer experience by providing efficient and convenient solutions to communicate and pay via text.

Your business might also consider using popular social apps like Instagram and Facebook to advertise your product or service. Potential customers can ask questions about the product on these platforms, request pricing, and, if ready, make a purchase right there using the payment link shared by the business.

SMS is also a safe and secure way to help your business collect payments on time and reduce the burden of overdue bills disrupting your cash flow. Given the convenience of text messaging and how many consumers prefer to text, SMS lets you meet your customers where they are.

SMS Safety

Although SMS offers several valuable benefits, normalizing digital payments with methods like SMS has led to an increase in fraud attempts. Businesses need to provide their customers with the safest payment experiences.

You should familiarize yourself with Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliance. The PCI Data Security Standard (DSS) applies to any organization, regardless of size. Credit card companies require that businesses meet PCI compliance conditions to promise the safety and security of credit card transactions. PCI compliance also holds businesses to specific technical standards to protect consumer credit card data throughout the payment process. Whether a transaction is completed online or through text message, following PCI standards keeps your customers’ information private and secure.

Do your due diligence and invest in a platform that partners with a financial services company for secure, PCI-compliant payments. Doing so ensures your customers’ information stays safe always.

Experience Marketing Tech to Enhance Customer Experience

The first step to providing outstanding experiences to your customers is identifying a reliable all-in-one experience marketing platform that will help you attract, convert and delight your customers throughout the customer journey. Whether your customers contact you via text, phone, social media channels or live chat, the platform should help you manage all interactions in one place. For example, experience marketing software with excellent payment features allows a doctor’s office to schedule appointments and collect payments in the same conversation.

Payments, as discussed above, are a crucial part of a customer’s overall experience. Ensure your chosen platform allows you to collect payments digitally for a seamless experience that will consistently leave your clients satisfied.

Modern methods of payment are the new norm. Don’t let your business fall behind or get stuck in the past without SMS transactions, and don’t make your customers work harder to pay for items and services when this simple, stress-free solution is available. Keeping your customers satisfied with an effortless experience will help you attract even more people who want to support your company.

by Dave Lehman Chief Operating Officer , Birdeye

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