Short Message Service (SMS): The Critical Business Channel
There’s little doubt that Messaging in all its forms has dramatically changed the way consumers and businesses interact. Indeed, we send more than 500 billion messages each month. Yet, there’s one messaging channel that’s more widespread and more popular than the rest: SMS.
For convenience, ease, flexibility, and reach, no other communication channel comes close. Moreover, while email open rates are considered good at 21.8%, SMS open rates currently stand at a massive 98% [Gartner]. And 90% of texts are opened in under 3 minutes.
In this article, we take a look at how SMS text messaging has risen to the fore in business over the last few years and why companies like yours should incorporate text into your overall marketing mix.
Why Global Business is Doubling Down on SMS
1. Smartphone adoption increases year on year
One of the key reasons why business messaging has taken off is the ever-increasing adoption of smartphones worldwide. The number of smartphone subscriptions has continued to grow steadily over the last five years. User numbers have surpassed 6 billion this year (2021), doubling the figure of 3.6 billion reported in 2016. Yet this growth shows no signs of slowing. Instead, it is forecast to grow by several hundred million in the next few years.
Such universal acceptance of mobile technology means that most people have access to SMS, know how to use it, and enjoy doing so. Indeed, text messaging has become the preferred channel of choice for many. Text messages reach more consumers more quickly and much more reliably than any other channel. And it is this, above all, that has led to the unprecedented rise in SMS usage in the business world today.
2. SMS is personal
SMS is the ultimate in personal communication. Each message can be tailored and sent directly to an individual’s mobile device as a one-to-one conversation. Such personlization makes it easier to grab the customer’s attention and speed response times. People generally respond to texts quickly, and chances are that customers will respond just as fast to a business text.
3. SMS is instant
According to research, the time it takes for a company to respond to a customer query, is the most important factor in customer satisfaction. And that’s why 2-way SMS is so powerful. It’s instant. It dramatically reduces the time it takes for a company to respond to its customers. The average business response time currently stands at around 5 hours. So if you can respond faster, your organization will forge ahead of its rivals.
4. Text Messages are trackable
Since SMS and MMS are digital technologies, they are an invaluable business tool for gauging their collective impact on user engagement, conversions, and revenue.
Organizations can quickly analyze SMS and MMS data to understand the behavior of consumers and gain valuable insights into their product offerings. But proper segmentation is vital for the correct analysis of data. Storing messages under categories such as Promotional SMS, Service SMS, or News-based SMS, for example, makes it easier to track, analyze, and measure them. Then it’s easy to see what’s working (or not). And it helps you to optimize future messaging for greater sales opportunities and more substantial ROI.
Better yet, some SMS providers (like YakChat) let you archive SMS messages for legal compliance.
SMS for Microsoft Teams
SMS may have been around for a long time, but it remains a channel that is indisputably vital to global business. It’s valued highly by both consumers and organizations alike for its accessibility, flexibility, and speed – and never more so during the current global pandemic
And now, thanks to YakChat, organizations like yours can add 2-way SMS to Microsoft Teams quickly and easily for faster, more streamlined communication.