You can now request home improvement services from Pro.com with a few text messages or directly within Facebook Messenger.
The Seattle startup that’s looking to create one-stop shopping for home repairs today unveiled a new mobile messaging service called “Text-a-Pro” that lets customers receive flat-rate prices on home projects.
By texting 776-776, users can connect to a personal “Home Project Manager” that will help answer any questions about a given project, from window cleaning to smart thermostat installation to hanging a flat-panel TV, and connect you with the right professional.
In limited trials over the past three months, more than 150,000 text messages were exchanged between Pro.com customers, managers, and home services professionals.
“We have learned over the past year that many customers prefer texting and messaging as channels for working with Pro.com, specifically for the convenience of communicating on-the-go and the responsiveness of Pros during the job,” said Pro.com founder Matt Williams.
Along with texting, customers will also be able to set up appointments through Facebook Messenger by sending messages to Pro.com’s Facebook account. The social media giant first announced “Businesses on Messenger” in March as a way to let e-commerce sites communicate with customers directly within the Messenger app. Pro.com is the first home services company to partner with Facebook for the new Messenger feature.
Text-a-Pro is available today in Seattle and San Francisco and will be available to others customers in Pro.com’s 5,500 U.S. cities in the future.
Pro.com, which has raised $17.5 million across two rounds, is just one of several companies trying to bring the home services market online. Other competitors in the space include Angie’s List, Thumbtack, Porch and HomeAdvisor, and Amazon, which is where Williams worked for a long time after his startup LiveBid.com was acquired by the company in 1999.