A mobile-first world and an on-demand economy has introduced a level of engagement between consumers and businesses that, for the most part, has been mutually beneficial.
For companies, it means making contact without pushing away the customer, and using the right technology to fully take advantage of the opportunities. Short Message Service (SMS) is proving to be one of the best ways to make this possible.
Sonar, a communications platform that allows businesses to connect with their customers through mobile messaging channels, is extending its SMS capability by integrating it with Shopify, one of the largest ecommerce platforms.
With this new feature, Sonar is going to give businesses the ability to carry out two-way conversations with their customers using their favorite mobile messaging channels. Online retailers can now send a range of relevant information, including real-time updates if the customer chooses to be engaged in this way.
Expanded SMS Capability = Targeted Communication
All it takes to start reaping the benefits of this feature is to use the Sonar SMS chat widget and install it with a single click. Once it is part of Shopify, your business can deliver shipping notifications, customer support and sales with text messaging.
The Sonar platform lets you manage hundreds of thousands of messages going in and out each month with full support for SMS and Facebook Messenger on an easy to use dashboard.
“Sonar was built from the ground up with mobile customers in mind. Customers want to reach out to companies on these channels, it’s all about giving them the option to do so,” said Sonar, CEO and Founder, Mathew Berman in an email to Small Business Trends.
Sonar starts you off with a 14-day free trial with all of its plans, which includes 100 messages and 50 customers over the two week period. If you like the service and wish to continue, it has four tiers:
- Small Biz for $50 per month, 1,500 messages and 600 customers
- Growth for $200 per month, 7,500 messages and 3,000 customers
- Accelerate for $600 per month, 25,000 messages and 9,000 customers
- Success for $1,000 per month, 50,000 messages and 15,000 customers
All the plans come with unlimited seats, Facebook Messenger, API access and 24/7 support.
One of the greatest benefits of SMS is the access and cost of the technology. It provides the same instant deliverability of voice, but with an ROI that is much higher.
According to Dynamark’s 2nd Edition Mobile Intelligence Review, 90 percent of SMS are read within the first three seconds, and they have a final read rate of 98 percent. Compare that to the updated March 1, 2016 email-marketing stats by MailChimp across all major industries, and Sonar SMS capability is looking even better.
The report revealed email only averages open rates of under 30 percent, in most cases in the high teens and low twenties. But the click rate is much lower, coming in at less than three percent for companies of all sizes. With almost one hundred percent penetration rate of SMS enabled mobile devices globally, using this messaging technology is a sure fire way to increase customer engagement, service, loyalty and retention.
As Berman noted, “The best customer experience comes from providing the best communication on the channels customers prefer,” and with 20 billion text messaging being sent daily, SMS is the proffered channel for many users around the world.
Image: Small Business Trends via Sonar