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The power of SMS: From abandoned carts to reducing appointment no-shows


The power of SMS: From abandoned carts to reducing appointment no-shows


Tara Salmon dives into all the reasons SMS notifications can drive click-through, customer engagement and boost your business performance.

In 2021 there are 4.8B mobile phones in the world so it’s no surprise that text messages have an open rate that far exceeds that of any other communication channel, with 90 percent of messages read in the first 90 seconds.

That said, the power of SMS extends far beyond just sending a message to someone. It’s a powerful communication tool that can be harnessed to successfully achieve business objectives. Integrating SMS into a company’s marketing and channel mix can help resolve many common business problems and drive successful campaign outcomes.

Here are some common ways SMS can be used by today’s marketing leaders to enhance communications and performance:

Alerts and notifications

SMS has been proven to achieve up to 29 percent click-through rates when part of integrated marketing campaigns, making it a highly effective form of communication to drive customer engagement. There are a few ways SMS alerts and notifications can help your business.

  • Loyalty: Send personalised messages with discount codes, thank you notes, or acknowledgments of customer loyalty. For example: ‘You’ve purchased 10 times! Enjoy 10 percent off your next order by using THANKYOU10 at checkout.’
  • Appointments: Ensure your appointment schedule is full and reduce no-shows by up to 50 percent with SMS reminders that can include helpful links or easy ways to reschedule appointments.
  • Retail: Run a campaign with a strong call to action that drives customers to your store or website with personalised offers and trackable links.

Abandoned Cart Reminders

The average rate of shopping cart abandonment is just shy of 70 percent. This amounts to a staggering $260B of lost orders which could be recoverable through optimising checkout flows.

In addition to common methods such as simple upgrades to websites, improving user experience and offering free shipping, text messaging is a highly effective way to drive cart recovery. According to our research, we’ve seen text messaging successfully drive results of up to 20 carts recovered per 100 SMS sent.

Automated Messaging

The ease of text messaging makes it an effective method of communication for sales and customer service teams, especially when they can set up automated responses or notifications to proactively update customers on delivery or product changes. Customers have found that the inclusion of two-way texting and SMS automation can reduce support queue time by 50 percent.

Just like your email practice, it’s best not to spam your customer base with automated messages. The more personalised and targeted your communications via SMS can be, the more effective. It’s also important to consider scheduling automated SMS messages at appropriate times or setting up auto-reply windows.

Not only is SMS better for the customer, but it can also improve operations and the overall customer service experience by leaps and bounds.

By including some of these text messaging techniques in your marketing mix, you can achieve more effective communications, enhance customer relationships and ultimately reach your marketing and business goals much faster.


Tara Salmon is Chief Marketing Officer for Australia’s largest mobile customer engagement platform, MessageMedia.

Photo by Oleg Magni on Unsplash.


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