Customer service at your fingertips

How many of you dread calling a company's customer service line? You fear you'll be trapped on hold with bad music, or have to try to work your way through seemingly impossible phone prompts.

But we found now some big name businesses have a new, almost instant, high tech way of helping you. The goal: saving you time and money.

When Carly Kirsch needed info on how to exchange a jacket she ordered instead of calling Lands' End customer service, she texted them.

"I clicked on the number, it prompted me for a text message, and I put in my issue and I started corresponding with the customer service person right away," Kirsch says.

We found the number of companies offering this high-tech option is growing.

"The companies I work with have found that their customers are more and more excited about not staying on hold. So they've been expanding the use of text messaging," says customer service consultant and author Micah Solomon. From millennials to baby boomers the option to text a company is in digital demand.

"Customers want the experience with the companies to be as similar to regular life as it can be, and in our regular lives we all know we message much more than we phone these days," Solomon says.

We tried texting retailers ourselves. We jumped online, got text numbers off companies' websites-then fired off messages.

Home Depot texted us which aisle garbage bags are in inside our local store.

Office Depot confirmed via text that the local store had Gorilla Glue. Reps also emailed us that they launched text messaging so customers can receive assistance whether they are at home, in the office or on the go.

Lowe's sent us info about hardwood flooring right away. We also emailed the company about its program and officials told us that the company understands customers are busy and many would prefer to ask a question to resolve an issue without dedicating time to a phone call.

Stouffer's texted us how much protein is in their Five Cheese Lasagna. (Brand ambassadors are available 24/7.)

And Mac Cosmetics texted us some lipstick insight and makeup tips.

Solomon says, "You can do it on your own schedule; you can text a question then you can go pick up your kids in the carpool, and when you're done driving, the answer may be ready for you."

Carly says she texted her way to an easy coat exchange, adding, "It got the job done very quickly and very accurately."

Before you, the text makes sure you get the right number, right off the company's website. Of course, don't text and drive!
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