SMS 101: Trends to watch


minute read

For a new channel with a playful vibe, SMS has quickly become the fastest-growing marketing tool for ecommerce brands. But SMS marketing only scratches the surface of what this powerful channel can do. 

There’s a lot more to it than text blasts and discount codes—and brands who tap into the familiarity and personal connection of text messaging can build deeper relationships and increase customer lifetime value. 

Open rate for text is 98%, email is 21%

Early adopting-brands have seen stunning results: the open rate for texts from brands is 98%, compared to just 21% for email marketing. We’re not saying to scrap your multi-channel strategy, but SMS should be your bulls-eye. Here are the biggest text trends to keep your eye on.

The new normal

SMS is outgrowing its invasive reputation as the consumer appetite for convenience increases, and more and more businesses make life easier by meeting customers where they’re spending their time.

Stats about consumer interest in texting with brands

According to Shopify, 70% of Millennials prefer to communicate with businesses via text on mobile, and 47% of consumers are already signed up to receive texts from a brand. As more brands migrate their messaging strategy to SMS, the more normal it will feel to consumers and merchants alike.

May the best brand win

One-way text blasts won’t win your customers over. The competition for opt-ins will only get harder as consumers keep their text community small and loyal—and as they come to expect personalized service and real-time support. 

A thoughtful messaging strategy that includes relevant texts and two-way, timely conversations is key to turning consumers into repeat customers.

2-way SMS conversation

The case for personalization

SMS allows brands to provide customers with the personalized shopping experience once reserved for brick and mortar. A direct line to your most loyal customers, it lets you interact with them in real time, understand what they’re shopping for, and answer their questions about your products. 

Consumers want a different kind of interaction with their favorite brands, and they want to feel like they matter to you. With their order history at your fingertips, you can send meaningful messages that include personalized recs and reorder reminders—which will drive repeat purchases and generate higher customer lifetime value.

Personalized text-to-buy conversation

Cookies are out, privacy is in

Between the iOS 15 privacy crackdown and Google’s plan to phase out support of third-party cookies, brands who rely on Facebook ads, email marketing, and retargeting campaigns will have to find other ways to track customer behavior. 

As consumer demand for both privacy and personalization grows, brands should turn their attention to SMS. Forward-thinking brands have been using text messaging to capture useful information through interactions with their customers. It’s the quickest, most direct way to reach them and learn their preferences, which allows you to provide a curated customer experience. 

It’s safe to say SMS is here to stay. And with a solid strategy, there’s no telling how lucrative this powerful channel will be.

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