8 benefits of USSD services for businesses

USSD provides several opportunities for businesses to better target and reach their various customer bases. This technology is both simple and powerful and is being used across applications to achieve several specific business goals and objectives, especially where emerging markets are concerned. Today we provide the benefits of USSD for businesses.

For more than 10 years, hundreds of organizations in and outside Uganda have relied on our stable, dependable and scalable USSD services to power country-wide and localized for-profit and social campaigns.

What is USSD?
Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD), sometimes referred to as “quick codes” or “feature codes”, is a communications protocol used by GSM cellular telephones to communicate with the mobile network operator’s computers. USSD can be used for WAP browsing, prepaid callback service, mobile-money services, location-based content services, menu-based information services, and as part of configuring the phone on the network.

Many liken USSD to Short Message Service (SMS), but the two are very different. SMS’s can be stored on a phone and are not interactive, while USSD is interactive and cannot be stored. USSD, in simple terms, is a transaction while SMS is a message. USSD works in real-time, while SMS is merely a text message that is delivered to a mobile phone.

Benefits of USSD
1. Reduces operating costs when it works as a self-service application for your customers.
2. It works with just about every mobile phone.
3. Intuitive menu with real-time interactivity.
4. Two-way communication is up to seven times faster than SMS.
5. Does not require an internet connection or data to work.
6. Enhanced customer satisfaction when you give them the ability to serve themselves.
7. Works globally.
8. Very economical.

All in all, USSD works on just about any mobile phone, whether it’s a cheap, or expensive smartphone. It’s free for your clients to use, and cost-effective for businesses. It does not require data to work, and all it needs to operate is a connection to the GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) network.

From the above, it is clear that USSD solutions like Yo! Uganda provide several benefits to Telcos and businesses. These include creating two-way communication with customers, offering them more efficient services and methods of gaining information, maximizing customer reach, and enabling the effective targeting of customers. These elements positively enhance customer experience and service levels which significantly reduce customer churn and increase profitability. We expect to see this technology transform and evolve in the coming years, especially where emerging markets are concerned.

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