3 Ways Messaging Can Improve Pull-through Rates

Time is money. Truer words have never been spoken, especially when it comes to loan closings and improving pull-through rates, a key metric for success of any lending institution. Unfortunately, when most people think of loan applications, words like “long,” “drawn-out” and “inefficient “ are words that may readily spring to mind.

A lot of lenders are looking at technology as a way to change this perception of the process and taking a closer look at messaging. With so many people using messaging as a daily communication tool, it’s easy to see why 66% of consumers prefer texting as a way to engage with companies. Messaging is helping lenders deliver faster, more convenient service to borrowers through messaging while reaping the benefits of this preferred, more cost-effective,  method of communication.  Let’s take a look at why messaging has become so crucial within the lending industry.

Improve Pull-through Rates with Messaging  

It has been a seller’s market since the housing recovery began.  A shortage of inventory has left a lot of buyers competing aggressively for homes. This inventory strapped, competitive market has lengthened the home-buying timeline to account for buyers losing bids to other, highly motivated, buyers. Still, lenders have seen around 40% of the loan applications they receive go to closing.

40% may seem like a respectable number, but examining the hard costs involved in each transaction may make you reconsider. It costs on average about $8,000 of hard costs to move people from loan application to closing and pre-approval processing can account for up to $2,000 of those hard costs. When you think of the 6 out of 10 people who never close, the amount of money that walks out the door with them quickly adds up. It’s easy to see why improving pull-through rates can substantially impact the bottom line.

Let’s look at three ways messaging can help improve pull-through rates.

1. Gain buyer loyalty

Industry research indicates that homebuyers may expect to wait two weeks for a loan pre-approval, at least 30 – 60 days just to find a home and an average of 40-50 days to close a loan after their offer is accepted. One often overlooked risk that some lenders have found of this lengthy sales cycle is that it opens the door for other lenders to lure borrowers away, putting the 40% closing rate further at risk.

Staying engaged with borrowers throughout this long, complicated process can help alleviate the need to shop around for other lending options. Assisting lenders in becoming the trusted advisors that home buyers need and want throughout the buying process can solidify the borrower’s trust in the lender and cement the relationship.

First time home buyers and millennials may need extra care, and attention and messaging is key to reaching these buyers. Millennials tend not to be as brand loyal as other generations so if they feel they’re not getting the information they want as quickly as they want it, they won’t hesitate to find another lender who’s willing to provide it.

2. Expedite the transmission of information  

A lot of first time home buyers are surprised at how long the process can take and what is involved. According to the National Association of Realtors Millennials and Gen-Y (Buyers 36 and younger) make up the most significant share of home buyers, and 66% of these buyers are also first-time home buyers so their communication preferences can’t go ignored.

Delays in Income verifications, credit pulls, and other documentation can substantially delay a closing. Messaging greases the communication wheel with buyers to help move the process along. Unlike phone calls that go unanswered or emails that can get caught in spam filters or fall too far in an inbox to get urgent attention, borrowers receive messages directly to their phones and read them within three minutes of receipt.

The new generation of borrowers prefer text messages over calls and emails and will be more likely to open a text message vs. answering a phone number that’s not familiar to them. Messaging has a 98% open rate and 30% response rate which means borrowers can easily see and address important notifications and requests. Sending requests for documentation, or asking questions via messaging ensures a more frictionless closing process.

3. Gain More Referrals and Repeat Business

The average homeowner will move or refinance every 5 – 7 years. Delivering an outstanding loan experience can generate more advocacy and retention for future business. Messaging helps lenders deliver that first excellent experience by improving communication, managing expectations and enabling a faster means for two-way communication between lender and borrower.

Messaging can also help lenders stay top of mind with these buyers. Quiq clients frequently use outbound messaging as a way to keep in touch with clients and lenders have plenty of opportunities to provide customers with quick reminders and messages to keep the relationship going:

  • a message on their birthday or anniversary
  • market updates as they near the time they may be considering downsizing
  • or a quick reminder that their home equity can assist in paying for their kid’s college education.

Communication is crucial to setting and managing expectations, especially among new home buyers and Millennials who may seek more guidance during the process. Communication that is fast and convenient is critically important to these buyers, which is why text messaging has become such a highly preferred method of communication with lenders.

An investment in technology is no longer a process improvement but a competitive necessity for lending institutions. Quiq Messaging is helping lenders connect with borrowers in a convenient, preferred way through mobile, web, and social messaging. If your institution is ready to improve your pull-through rates, request a demo.

Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with our friends and family.  With Quiq, customers can now engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App,and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. Learn more about Quiq today at quiq.com.

Direct Digital: Augmenting Customer Service With Multi-Channel Messaging

Giving customers choices and standing out from the competition—that’s what Direct Digital wanted. Their customer service department always strives to deliver excellent service. However, using the traditional communication channels, such as phone and email, just wasn’t enough.

“From a manager’s perspective I really like how I can help my agents respond to customers when needed by using the collaboration functionality in Quiq. It’s super easy to use and we can ensure customers get their questions answered correctly and quickly.”

Lauren Adcock, Senior Manager of Customer Service

They decided to offer customers the opportunity to reach them using messaging – text/SMS, Facebook Messenger, web chat, and IVR to text. Wanting to make it even easier and more convenient for customers to contact Direct Digital, and offering a more comfortable way to ‘talk’ to agents, they chose Quiq.

Now, with Quiq Messaging, Direct Digital is supporting three of their major brands, Instaflex, Nugenix, and Peptiva with multi-channel messaging—text, web chat, and Facebook Messenger. When customers have product inquires, questions about returns, or shipping questions, they can reach Direct Digital’s experienced contact center by using one of these messaging channels. When customers have questions about a product purchase, they can choose how they want to engage, making it super easy to get answers quickly. Customers go away happy and healthy, getting their questions answered in just a few minutes.

Easy for Agents and Managers

Since Quiq is so intuitive, all of Direct Digital’s in-house contact center agents are trained to manage these messaging conversations, along with email and phone calls. They can shift between whichever channel they need to, allowing for equal distribution of inquiries, regardless of brand. The contact center does not skip a beat when in-house agents are out. As the business has grown, Direct Digital’s outsourced agents pick up the overflow messages to ensure customers are responded to quickly, especially during weekends.

When managing over 1,000 message conversations monthly, the majority of them via text, Direct Digital appreciates the ability to use pre-built responses to easily train new agents and allow agents to quickly respond to customers with commonly asked questions. Managers like the opportunity to assist agents when responding to customers using the collaboration functionality offered by Quiq, which ensures customers aren’t put on hold.

The Future is Bright

This is just the start for Direct Digital. They plan to expand the use of messaging to other sections of their brand websites. You will soon see messaging available on its various ecommerce sites and check-out pages to allow customers to ask questions during these critical interaction points. As its contact center continues to grow, Direct Digital will look to use routing rules in order to get the right messages to the right agents throughout the day.

About

Direct Digital LLC develops and markets wellness and nutritional supplements in North America and internationally. The company distributes its products direct-to-consumers and through major retailers.

Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with our friends and family.  With Quiq, customers can now engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App,and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. Learn more about Quiq today at quiq.com.

BizReport: Top 5 Tips to Improve Social Customer Service

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Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with friends and family.  With Quiq, customers can engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App, and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. In return, companies get a digital engagement platform to communicate with customers. Learn more about Quiq today at goquiq.com.

evo Adds a Texting Option for Customer Service

Retailer Expanded Service Options

When outdoor gear and apparel retailer evo started to use messaging for customer service, it caught the eye of Internet Retailer. Read how this retailer expanded service options and improved agent productivity while keeping on increasing revenue.

About Quiq
Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with friends and family.  With Quiq, customers can engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App, and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. In return, companies get a digital engagement platform to communicate with customers. Learn more about Quiq today at quiq.com.

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2018 Winter Olympics | Quiq Predicts The Most Popular Texts

As the world waits impatiently to see top athletes compete in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the Quiq team is sitting in warm offices dreaming of gold medals and making Olympic predictions. From February 7th through the 25th, some of the world’s greatest athletes will brave frigid temperatures to compete in events such as ski jumping and the luge.

With top talent from all over the world, the competition in every sport will be fierce. There are a couple of things we’re sure of:

1) There will be plenty of moments to talk about over the next few weeks, and

2) People home and abroad will be burning up their mobile soft keys to text friends and family about those “thrill of victory and agony of defeat” moments with pics, videos, emojis, and GIFs – sharing their excitement, no matter where they are.

This year it will be easy for spectators who have traveled to Pyeongchang to send text messages as the top three mobile carriers, Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile are all allowing customers to use their plans in Korea without charge. This means there will be a surge of text messages from those who are “boots on the ground” at the Winter Games and are able to capture unbroadcasted moments of the Olympics to share with their social networks back home.

While we can’t predict who will take home medals for each event, we thought we’d take break from making predictions about the next rose ceremony on “The Bachelor” and take a shot at predicting the most popular text messages that will be exchanged during the Winter Games.

2018 Winter Olympics Popular Texting Topic Predictions

Quiq presents the most popular texting topics for the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics:

10. “What time is it there”
(Time differences) – South Korea is 14 hours ahead of everyone on the East Coast and  17 hours ahead of the West Coast.

9. “Did you see those gloves”
(The opening ceremony uniforms) – Team USA will be sporting uniforms designed by Ralph Lauren.

8. “What’s a Soohorang?”
(The Mascot) – This year a friendly white tiger named Soohorang will serve as the mascot.

7. “Where can I get that jacket?”
(The gear athletes are sporting) – Along with hi-tech gear designed by Ralph Lauren, athletes will sport outfits for medal ceremonies designed by Nike.

6. “How cold is it?”
(Temperatures) – Pyeongchang 2018 is expected to be the coldest Winter Olympics site since Norway 1994.

5.“Wow, can you believe they picked that song?”
(The music choices for figure skating) – This will be the first year athletes competing in singles and double figure skating events will be allowed to skate to music with lyrics.

4. “Whoa, did you see that?”
(Big Air) – Snowboarding and freestyle skiing are new events this year that will sure to get viewers attention.

And finally, the top three text messaging topics:

For the Bronze
“What time is it on?”
(Schedules) – With so many great events, viewers will want to remember to check schedules for event dates and times.

Silver goes to
“Amazing”
(All performances) – From the pomp and circumstance of opening ceremonies, to the bittersweet closing ceremonies and every feat of athleticism in between, we expect there to be a lot of texts summing it all up with this one word.

Taking home the Gold
“How many do we have?”
(Medal counts) – With 102 events in 15 sports, it’ll be the first Winter Olympics to surpass 100 medal events so there’s plenty of metal to keep track of.

What are your predictions for the most popular text message topics that will be sent during the 2018 Winter Olympics? Leave a comment below and share.

No matter where you are in the world, enjoy the games. Good luck to all the athletes and let the games begin.

About Quiq

Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with our friends and family.  With Quiq, customers can now engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App,and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. Learn more about Quiq today at quiq.com.

Office Depot: Outpacing the Competition with Quiq

Office Depot embarked on their journey to deliver an enhanced shopping experience for their customers and decided to engage Quiq. They wanted to make sure their customers were able to ask questions when and however they wanted.

“Very few omni-channel business providers have adopted text messaging and thanks to Quiq, we are able to offer this innovative channel to our customers. Whether a customer is in the office or on-the-go, they are at the center of our business.”

Casey Ahlbum, Senior Manager, Customer Relations, B2B & Digital Support

Making It Easy For Both Customers And Agents

Now when a customer wants to know the status of an order, or if a specific product is in stock, or a specific store location, he/she can simply text Office Depot. In less than a minute, customers are receiving a comprehensive reply to their initial text message and the entire conversation is generally completed in ten minutes or less. Consumers are reacting positively about the speed in which Office Depot’s customer service representatives are responding to the inquiries and the convenience text messaging affords them.

This initiative took only 30 days to implement, including the integration to Oracle Service Cloud and the training of customer service representatives. In addition, representatives in the contact center now only need to log into one system to view all channels, including messaging. This allows reps to be more efficient when responding to over 500 conversations with customers a day, which peaks at 2,000 conversations when running key promotions

Sharing The Text Messaging Channel Internally

Office Depot showcased the Quiq messaging channel to its associates by capturing internal feedback in real-time, via text during a recent Town Hall meeting. They wanted to show the rest of the organization this innovative technology. Associates sent videos and messages quickly and easily via text instead of with a traditional survey.

Office Depot’s Business Solutions Division (BSD) started implementing Quiq’s messaging channel with its sales team to obtain quicker replies to inquiries when meeting with customers, instead of sending in an email or making a phone call.

Next Up

Office Depot plans to incorporate social media, specifically Facebook Messenger, into the messaging channel, allowing representatives to quickly respond to incoming customer inquiries via Quiq Messaging. In addition, messaging will be expanded to support the company’s B2B customers.

About Quiq

Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with our friends and family. With Quiq, customers can now engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App,and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. Learn more about Quiq today at quiq.com.

Jackson Hole Mountain Resort: Expanding Its Customer Service Channels

Priding itself on a superior customer experience, Jackson Hole wanted to expand customer service channels to make sure its customers could reach them however they liked. Already providing customers the option to contact the resort via phone and email, it needed a more cost effective live chat platform to compliment these channels with text messaging. Allowing customers to choose whichever channel they prefer would align perfectly with the resort’s desire to deliver a premium experience.

Turning to Quiq, Jackson Hole rolled out a new text messaging and chat platform for its customers. Now when a customer is on the online store or brand site they are presented the appropriate communication channel automatically. Customers can easily reach the resort by sending a text message from a mobile device or engaging in a live chat conversation if they are using a desktop computer.


“I am really pleased with how customers are using messaging to reach our staff for quick questions. This helps free-up the reservationists to respond to customer questions that need to be answered via phone such as placing an order.”

Kim Essensa, Guest Services Manager

Answer Customers’ Questions Quickly

When customers have questions about tram hours or recent snow amounts, they simply just send a text message or start a live chat to get their questions answered quickly. Or customers can send a message to Jackson Hole’s guest services to put their minds at ease about when the lifts are up and running. It’s easy and fast, and exactly what customers have grown to expect in this world of instant information.

Because the Quiq messaging platform is so intuitive, reservationists can easily bounce between all channels. Training is a breeze with the staff picking it up within minutes. And by using the pre-built responses, managers can ensure customers receive a consistent and accurate response no matter which reservationist responds. Jackson Hole is seeing that the majority of its inbound inquiries are now in the form of text messages. And even more, phone calls have decreased and overnight email volume has dropped by 75%.

About

Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is a skier and snowboarder paradise with 4,136 continuous vertical feet, 2500 acres of the best beginner, intermediate, and expert skiing and snowboarding and a genuine “Last of the Old West” feel.

Quiq makes it easy for customers to contact a business via Messaging, the preferred channel already in use with our friends and family. With Quiq, customers can now engage with companies via SMS/text messaging, Facebook Messenger, Web Chat, In-App,and Kik for help with their pre-sales and post-sales questions. Learn more about Quiq today at quiq.com.