Anyone who has spent hours picking out home furnishings knows that little details matter before making a final decision. But what if you wanted to know something really specific — such as the color of the plug on a lamp you’re thinking of buying — but you didn’t have time to visit the store to check for yourself? Lamps Plus has debuted a text-to-store functionality that connects shoppers with in-store associates, allowing them to act as the customer’s eyes within the store.
The program, which Lamps Plus began testing in December 2018 and has since expanded to its 37 stores, allows customers to send questions from their phones’ SMS app without requiring an additional app. The store manager or assistant store manager carries a dedicated iPhone during store hours to respond to customers’ texts. Customers can tap the “Check Store Availability” option within each mobile product page, leading to a page where a “Text Store For Availability” prompt initiates an SMS message about the product. Text numbers also are located on store pages, in customer marketing emails and inside printed catalogs.
Managers or associates receiving texts can “check if a particular product is in-stock at the store, and also answer questions that are more specific than someone at a call center could,” said Dalin Brinkman, Senior Manager for Site Strategy at Lamps Plus. “They can answer those very specific questions, such as what color the plug is — and they can take a picture of it to send back to the shopper via text.”