Consumers of Local Businesses Prefer Communications Via Text and Voice

A new survey shows 93% of consumers who support local businesses want both text and voice options when communicating with them depending on the circumstances.

Despite 94% of respondents wanting to support small businesses, 87% of patrons opt to shop online because purchasing locally is too inconvenientCommunicating remains a challenge with local businesses. The remedy — according to 78% of respondents — is simply having the ability to text local businesses, according to the survey of 1,000 U.S. consumers commissioned by Cloudli Communications, Inc., a leading provider of voice, data and messaging solutions.

The new survey highlights consumers’ desires to communicate with local businesses via text and voice depending on the situation. An overwhelming number (76%) of consumers reported they’d be more likely to frequent a small-to-medium size business that offers text messaging. Over two-thirds said they’d make the switch to shopping local if the business offered text messaging.

Interestingly, consumers ranked phone calls and the lowly mailed letter as the least preferred methods of business communication. Conversely, consumers still want to speak with businesses, but on their own terms. A comparison of consumer text and call preferences revealed consumers want to reach businesses — regardless of sector — by text message (see below chart Text v. Call Preferences of Consumers Across Sectors).

Text v. Call Preferences of Consumers Across Sectors


Phone Call

Personal Care (e.g., Hair salons, spas & barbershops)



Retail Services






Travel & Transportation (e.g., Ride shares, airline updates)



Health & Wellness (e.g., Doctor’s offices & gyms)



Advertising & Marketing



Financial Services



Entertainment (e.g., Streaming services, movies & games)



Technology Services (e.g., TV, WiFi)




The ability to text message favorite businesses and brands is highly desired by all age groups. When polled, over 80% of all generations surveyed reported wanting to text their favorite brands and businesses.

Respondents were nearly unanimous that there is a time and place for both messaging and calling depending on the situation, though 77% of Gen X, Millennials and Gen Z shared that they’re more likely to shop with a business they can text.

“As a small business owner, it can be challenging to stay on top of incoming and outgoing communications,” said Gavin Macomber, CEO of Cloudli. “Making use of technologies that enable your team to employ a blended communication strategy provides an opportunity to connect with your customers in a manner most convenient to them.”

Other interesting findings from the survey include:

  • 84% reported they’d respond to a text message from a business
  • 66% of consumers noticed an increase in text messaging from businesses during the pandemic
  • 7 out of 10 consumers reported that text messaging local businesses has made their shopping experience more convenient
  • 70% shared they’d recommend a local business that offers text messaging options to their friends and family
  • 70% of consumers found text message appointment reminders to be among the most helpful


Cloudli Communications recently announced the launch of Cloudli TalkNText™, a new mobile-first service that equips small businesses (SMBs) with unified voice and Business Texting capabilities, at a savings of up to 70% over industry-leading UCaaS and Business Texting solutions.

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About Author

Taylor Graham, marketing grad with an inner nature to be a perpetual researchist, currently all things IT. Personally and professionally, Taylor is one to know with her tenacity and encouraging spirit. When not working you can find her spending time with friends and family.