Introduction, why digital services rely on SMS
Imagine the time when services "on-demand" had an entirely different meaning. Nowadays, on-demand services are paramount to most business models and expectations when it comes to customer experience.
From watching videos or listening to music without the ease of online media streaming services like Netflix or Spotify to the entire travel experience from booking through Airbnb to catching a ride via Uber... today, many brands have become successful by providing services that are fully-digital and on-demand.
As the most common form of mobile communications, SMS has been around for over 30 years and continues to be one of the most reliable mobile communication channels boasting open rates of approximately 98%. With those figures, and modern expectations for digital and on-demand services, it is no wonder that SMS messaging has extended into business to customer applications and uses.
For companies, especially ones that provide digital and online services, SMS messages have various objectives and use cases essential to managing and enhancing a brand’s Customer Experience and overall success.
Here are 3 reasons why:
I. Adds extra security
Most digitally-native brands often require users to create a new account or profile before using their online services. To help protect fake, spam, and junk registrations, digitally-native brands can provide an extra layer of security by sending new account registrations a One Time Password via SMS.
By verifying the one time password sent to the user with your online service, quickly vet out phone numbers that aren’t legitimate or actively used by the person creating an account.
II. To send up-to-date notifications
Using SMS messages is the perfect channel to help brands keep their users informed quickly and reliably. Here are a few ways some of CM.com's clients use SMS notifications:
- Parkmobile, a business specialised in electronic and digital parking solutions, uses CM’s SMS API Gateway to send SMS reminders about when your meter is running out of time and messages that provide users with an option to add time to their parking meter.
“Our service is about trust and guarantee...Our customers want to know when their parking time is running out, so they can go to their car and leave or top-up,”
Tomas Novak, Commercial Manager at Parkmobile
- Takeaway.com, a meal-delivery platform, uses SMS notifications to keep their hungry users stay informed. Through SMS messages, they send users messages confirming their order has been placed, and throughout the process from when the meal is “in preparation,” “being picked up,” to "out for delivery" to “arriving soon.”
- SafariNow, is Southern Africa's largest accommodation booking website. With thousands of booking notifications going through the SafariNow.com platform each day, reliable communication is of the upmost importance. Partnering with a provider that can guarantee stable and fast communication was the primary goal. SafariNow.com turned to CM.com's SMS API to deliver their booking-related notification.
"CM.com provides an analytics tool that shows real-time information regarding messaging delivery time and rates. Due to the customer-centric approach that CM.com offers, we chose them to deliver our bookers and sellers quick mobile communications."
Matthew Evans, CTO at SafariNow.com
Using SMS messages to send real-time notifications and updates to users enables digitally-native brands to optimise and create a better customer experience.
In addition to notifications delivered via SMS, users can also enable and subscribe to receive Push or SMS notifications for discounts and alerts. Using the power of SMS notifications for status updates and discounts is a pivotal force to driving and empowering customer loyalty and retention.
III. To enhance marketing mbjectives
Once you’ve built an audience with valid mobile phone numbers you can use for mobile communications, SMS is a perfect channel for running and managing customer loyalty programs or marketing campaigns.
Another loyal CM.com client, Etam, a high-end, luxury French lingerie brand, uses SMS to send their customers exclusive offers, promotions, updates with new merchandise, and information regarding their loyalty point balance.
SMS messages open up endless possibilities for digitally-native brands looking to boost their reach and customer experience.
SMS allows us to "track the SMS delivery rate, which is close to 100%, and the rate of repeat purchases made online and in our stores.” Unlike in the past, SMS messaging can be monetized, turning a channel for communication into “a profitable channel.”
Jonathan Attali, Chief Digital Officer at Etam
After implementing SMS Etam noticed the rate of repeat purchases and the number of visits increase when an SMS message gets delivered. Additionally, SMS messages has been instrumental in helping decrease customer churn.
Make customers feel special and valued at every step of their buyers journey.
There are over 5 billion people worldwide that can send and receive SMS messages. 90% of the SMS messages are read within 3 minutes (source: Techjury.net) so it is clear that SMS is a perfect way to communicate with your customers during every step of their journey.