Decluttering with Delete (no app installation required)

Original photo (modified) by Torsten Scholz / CC BY

Delete is a service that will haul away your unwanted items to be donated, recycled, or dumped for a small fee. They usually show up the same day you make your request.

To get started, refreshingly, you do not need to install an app, nor do you need to create an account. Simply text a photo of your previously loved belongings to (415) 849-4481. Someone from the Delete team will respond with a price quote and to coordinate a pick-up. Delete currently serves the San Francisco Bay Area. Learn more at http://www.delete.ly

Besides offering a useful service, Delete is an example of the growing trend of businesses using messaging apps not only to interact with customers, but also as a first class user interface -- a phenomenon Uber's Chris Messina dubbed Conversational Commerce. In Delete's case, the conversations are text messages, and they eliminate the need to install a mobile app or sign up for an account. 2016 saw some of the largest players in Silicon Valley as well as startups jump onto the scene with new and improved messaging apps, digital assistants, artificial intelligence, chatbots, and more. (Read more on Medium.)

"We originally only planned to use texting to alpha test Delete before building out a Delete app," says Katie Gaudin, Director of Operations and Customer Experience at Delete, "but our SMS conversations with consumers were so natural that text has remained the primary way we communicate with customers." 

Behind the scenes, Delete uses Textline to manage these ongoing text conversations. Any company or organization in the US or Canada can sign up for Textline to start texting with its customers. (Textline will provide a new phone number in the company's local area code.) If your team is ready to start texting, sign up for your free trial at https://textline.com

PS. Ken Yeung of VentureBeat wrote a nice feature on Delete and its recent venture financing.

(Photo by Torsten Scholz / CC BY / modified)