Buying new furniture or a new appliance for your home can be a stressful task. The items are expensive, so buyers are going to consider more before they make a purchase.
All of this makes the industry ideal for quick, two-way communication with a good record of the conversation. Enter business SMS to help solve many of these business problems and while improving the customer experience.
Challenges furniture and appliance stores face
The best way to use texting for furniture or appliance companies is to use it to make the customer experience more personal and seamless. But this isn’t an easy task; keeping experiences personal yet efficient is hard work.
You want to give your customers the best shopping experience possible. This is what will help make them feel confident in their choice to shop with you and confident in their choice of an expensive piece of furniture or appliance. You’ll want to use texting in a personalized manner instead of sending out a mass blast to multiple customers at once.
Some of the challenges that furniture and appliance stores face include (but aren’t limited to):
- Increased customer choice
- Scheduling deliveries and servicing
- No-shows (either appointments in-store or during delivery time)
- Demand for personal virtual shopping
- Fielding customer questions
- Not having visuals for quotes/shopping/troubleshooting
Some of these challenges only apply to physical stores, while others apply to online retailers. An online retailer wouldn’t have the issue of scheduling show-room visits like a physical store would. Plus, not every business will offer things like servicing or virtual shopping.
Your customers have more choice than ever and likely aren’t experts in the exact items they’re shopping for, so they’ll be looking for your guidance and help in purchasing. Plus, the shopping situation can be intense or stressful if they’re looking for an item to replace something that broke or are looking to furnish a new home. Keep all of this in mind while nurturing your customers through the entire purchase process.
How to use texting to improve your home furnishings and appliance business
Texting can help better your business in ways you might not ever have imagined. You can use business SMS to ease your communication with customers, reduce no-shows, increase leads, and more. We’ll cover the ways you can use business SMS to improve your furniture or appliance business.
One of the most impactful ways you can use business SMS to improve your business is to use it to increase your lead generation. You can do this by using SMS to reach out to every viable lead you get. Whether you get their contact info from a lead form online, they call your store, or they text in because they found the number online, you can text them. Then you can use texting to nurture the lead until they complete a purchase.
One of the great things about a customer contacting you first or using a lead form is that that can count as an opt in. If they message you first, that’s their opt-in right there. Because opt-ins are required as a form of consent, you need them before you can get texting.
You can make your phone number on Google automatically open as an SMS, or you can include only your texting number on your website. These tactics help make it clear that customers or leads should text you.
Personalized shopping experience
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the option to shop without physically going into a store gained new importance. Even with restrictions on store capacity lifting, people have become used to the convenience of shopping from home.
Using business texting to communicate with customers can make this at-home shopping experience easier. Customers can text to ask what kind of items are in stock or whether they might get a delivery on a certain day. They can even text into your business with a description of a space and ask whether you have an item that would fit that space. You can even send links to customers to available items or items you might be able to order directly for them.
Taking personal shopping a step further requires access to MMS. Customers can send photos of an open space in their home, or a current piece of furniture or appliance with measurements and an agent can help them find options. They might send a photo of their current stovetop and over asking whether you have something similar in stock. Or they might ask you for your personal recommendations.
They can use this MMS feature to share any issues with an item they ordered from your business. Like if a light on their new refrigerator’s ice maker won’t turn off or the oven keeps beeping.
Delivery scheduling and coordination
One of the most concrete ways to improve the customer experience is to make scheduling and coordinating your deliveries easier. You can use texting to help customers schedule deliveries, confirm those deliveries and lower your no-show rate. You can use SMS to follow up post-delivery with a survey or even ask them to leave you a review if they’re happy with their experience.
After a customer makes a purchase, you want to ensure that they’ll return to your business next time they need another piece of furniture or home appliance. A great way to do this is to check in with customers and make sure they’re happy with their purchases. If they aren’t, you’re then in a position to solve any problem they have and salvage that potentially negative purchase experience.
This is also a great time to connect with your customers to see if there are any other items you might be able to offer them.
The bottom line
When it comes to texting, your furniture and appliance company stands to benefit from adding SMS to your workflow. You can use it to ease their shopping, deliveries, any other maintenance or service they need, and more. This can ultimately help you keep your customers happy and returning to your business any time they need to make a large purchase, the ultimate goal.