Wondering how or why you might want to use multiple business SMS numbers for your company? We're going to cover all the reasons you might have more than one number and how to decide how many numbers to text from.
When it comes to business texting, one of the biggest benefits of using a business texting platform is that you can completely manage your phone numbers and organization. Not only is using a personal phone number a considerable risk when business texting, but it’s also just one number for one individual, and you can only do so much with it. Using a platform allows you and your team to manage all of the SMS communications completely. You can decide what’s better for you: to have employees share numbers among your team or give each person their own number.
Ways to use different business texting phone numbers
There are a few different ways you could use multiple phone numbers for your business SMS. If you work with Textline, we can offer you numbers with the preferred zip code for your business, or you can use your existing numbers if you prefer.
1. For different locations of your business
If your business has multiple locations, you likely have different points of contact for each of those locations for phone calls, so why not texting too?
Multiple locations mean you might also want different texting phone numbers for each location too. Plus, your customers might be more comfortable texting the phone numbers with the area codes they’re familiar with.
You wouldn’t want a customer contacting your business only for it to be a branch in the wrong city or state. That’s exactly why segmentation is so important. The first way you could handle this is by having one team that handles all of your locations. They can determine the customer’s location to be sure they can help them or route them to the correct branch or agent. The other way you can segment is by having individual teams cover individual locations.
2. For different parts or departments of your business
Just like you want customers to contact the right location or branch of your business, you also want them to reach the right department. This is another form of segmentation that makes it easier for your employees to connect with customers.
If a customer’s contacting you about a billing issue, you want to make sure they’re in contact with the billing department, not scheduling or sales. This also helps reduce your overall call volume in general without lowering the quality of your customer service because your customers are reaching out via text in the first place.
Some customers with Textline even set up a line for another language. So they’ll have a number specifically for customers who need to speak with a representative or customer support agent in Spanish and make that a clear and separate number on their website.
3. For internal vs. external communication
Another form of segmentation will be whether you plan to use texting internally, externally, or both. Businesses typically wouldn’t use the same texting number to contact their customers as they would their own employees. This could cause confusion and it’s best to keep those external numbers and communications separate from internal ones with a different business texting phone number.
Having only one number might mean you’d have customer support also fielding employee support. Having one person conduct internal and external communication can be a lot for one person to specialize in. Not to mention is always means more tickets coming in at once, slowing down responses for customers, and increasing the need to switch contexts for your support team.
So you might choose to have a number for specifically contacting your employees. You’d use this line when you need to contact them about office updates, safety protocols, hours, or shift changes.
If your business operates with many of your employees in the field you might also want a number to text your employees from. You can use this to coordinate work assignments and be sure your dispatch team has their own line to use that’s different than your support team might have.
4. Different team members need different numbers
If your business is made up of multiple team members all working on different customers, deals, or projects, you might want to give each team member their own texting number. If you were working out of an office you’d give each team member their own landline or cell phone, so apply the same idea to texting numbers. This can be especially useful when trying to create an exclusive experience for your customers where they can have a personal customer support person on their side.
This also allows each representative to focus on their conversations or customers specifically. Account management and sales are a specific use case for this type of segmentation.
If you’d prefer you can also choose to have multiple customer support agents work off of one number. That way your customers feel as though they always interact with the same person and there’s no handoff that needs to happen in front of the customer. Another way to create this seamless conversation is by allowing managers to also step in when necessary. They might do this to help solve a technical problem or to help out when an agent is out sick or on vacation.
How to set up multiple business texting numbers
We’ll walk you through how to evaluate your business and decide how many numbers you might want to set up.
Step 1: Consider your locations
First, consider the locations of your business. If you only have one, this step is going to be fairly easy for you. If you have multiple locations though, consider which ones you want to add texting to. If you’re just starting out texting, you might choose to start with just one location before moving on to others.
Step 2: Evaluate your departments
Next, evaluate the departments at each of the locations you want to add texting to. This means look at your billing, scheduling, operations, customer support, and any other departments you have. You might need a number for each of these departments, or just one of them.
Step 3: Decide whether you’ll use texting internally and externally
You should also consider whether you’re going to use texting internally or externally. This will help you determine whether you need a line specifically to communicate with employees.
Step 4: Consult with your team members
You should also speak with your team members and see what they think about adding texting. They’re the people who would be using it and know the customers best. They can help you gain insight into how it would be most effectively added to your current set-up.
Step 5: Set up your numbers
Once you have all of this decided, you can contact Textline for help setting up your account and acquiring your phone numbers! We can help clear up any questions you might have about how many numbers you might need too.
Step 6: Check-in after a few months
You can always evaluate whether you actually need all the numbers you have or whether you might need even more. With Textline you’ll have access to our customer success team who can help you use Textline in the most effective way possible.
The bottom line
Multiple texting numbers can significantly help your business communication. You can give your customers a personalized experience and answer any questions they have quickly and efficiently. You can even use texting to communicate with your own employees if necessary.