Daniel Baltazhar
February 22, 2022

SMS Marketing for eCommerce Brands: The Complete Guide

The importance of cutting through the noise and reaching consumers where they are the most active is increasing by the day. Moving away from the traditional approach of using emails and social media, businesses can now be seen using SMS extensively to engage online shoppers across their buying journey. 

In this guide, we’re going to talk about everything you need to know about SMS marketing before getting started.  

If you already know about this marketing tactic and are looking for a tool to set up your SMS marketing campaign, book a demo of Recart today.

What is SMS marketing?

SMS marketing, also known as text message marketing, refers to a form of marketing wherein a business sends promotions to customers via text messages. These messages leverage the traditional messaging app features to deliver updates and alerts or communicate offers that a business is running to those who have consented to receive similar messages from the business.

The rise of text message marketing in the eCommerce industry

Over the last couple of years, eCommerce businesses have started to add SMS marketing to their promotional mix proactively to serve various use cases. This has given rise to text message marketing in the industry.

SMS marketing discount abandonment

But that’s not all; even consumers are choosing to use SMS to engage with brands.

At Recart, we’ve seen ROI reaching and exceeding 100x for eCommerce businesses using SMS marketing. The results delivered by text message marketing show how the use of this channel will increase in the coming years.

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Why eCommerce brands are turning to SMS text message marketing to scale their business

SMS is one channel that has never gone out of fashion, despite the ever-expanding digital landscape. In fact, it’s grown in popularity over recent years. Here are some other reasons why you need to add text messages to your marketing mix.

1. Smartphones are everywhere

As per Statista, the number of smartphone users worldwide surpasses six billion and is forecasted to further grow by several hundred million in the next few years. It’s safe to say, that no matter what you sell and who you sell to, your consumers are on their smartphones and SMS is a direct way to reach them.

2. Consumers are proactive on SMS

As per a study, Americans spend an average of 4 hours on their phone every day. Worldwide texting statistics have found that over 6 billion texts are sent every day, and over 180 billion texts are sent every month. The numbers are clearly indicative of how actively smartphone users are using SMS.

3. SMS is fast

Text messages are received instantly and owing to the way they get delivered, they are read immediately as well. In fact, studies have found that 90% of SMS marketing messages are read in just 3 minutes. So you can be sure that your promotional message, especially time-sensitive deals, get delivered fast.

4. Offers greater visibility and engagement

The increase in use of smartphones ensures that your message becomes visible almost instantly. Despite the categorisation of messages into promotions, known and unknown on some devices, the notification bar always displays a message from your business, leading to higher engagement - the average open rate being 99%.

5. Cut through the noise

SMS offers an individual window for messages sent from one contact, which makes it easy for the recipient to check all the updates sent. On the other hand, email and social media are prone to a lot of noise from individual and business accounts that a user may be connected to.

Promotional Mother's Day SMS campaign

How are eCommerce businesses using SMS marketing?

eCommerce businesses are still experimenting with how they use text messages to engage consumers at every stage of their lifecycle. But some of the common use cases that show great results include:

1. Send promotional campaigns for amazing return on marketing spend

This is probably the use case we see most often and for good reason! 80% of brands achieve 20-60x ROI using SMS for promotional purposes with flows and tactics offering discounts, deals and offers.

2. Send shipping updates

Similar to order alerts, businesses are seen integrating SMS to their logistics service providers to send automated shipping alerts to enable easy tracking of orders.

3. Grow their subscriber list for on-going communication

With the increase in importance of customer retention, more and more businesses are focusing on growing their subscriber base in order to keep their customers coming back. SMS is used to successfully re-engage dormant customers, re-target engaged customers who have stopped purchasing, and so much more.

4. Solve cart abandonment to engage high intention customers

Another great SMS use case that businesses are seeing results from is recovering abandoned carts. They use SMS to send reminders, sometimes with promotional codes, to encourage check out. Not only does this nudge those customers closest to purchase, but is also achieved through automated flows. This means that you and your business can rest easy knowing each and every cart abandonment is followed up promptly.

Abandoned Cart SMS flow

What you’ll learn in Recart’s SMS marketing guide

While we have summarized the scope of SMS marketing in eCommerce above, the following chapters will be a deep-dive into each. From benefits, use cases to examples and more, each chapter is detailed to serve as an actionable guide for your business.

Don’t want to miss another day of opportunities to reach your customer? Setting up SMS marketing to scale your eCommerce business doesn’t have to be difficult.

Recart’s SMS marketing is not just easy to use, but also intuitive, helping you increase revenue on autopilot using text messages. Book a demo today

Learn more about SMS marketing before you begin, click through to our next chapter: SMS marketing benefits

SMS marketing FAQs

How do I use SMS marketing to increase sales?

You can use SMS marketing in a number of ways to increase sales. From sending out promotions around your ongoing deals and discounts, to notifications about an upcoming sale, you can craft various marketing messages to encourage recipients to visit your website, in a similar fashion to email marketing.

How long should a marketing SMS be?

SMS messaging has a limited character count. So we recommend keeping your message crisp and clear, and adding a call-to-action to nudge a recipient towards the next steps.

What are the top reasons to use an SMS text marketing tool?

To send a message to consumers, you need to be compliant with a few rules and regulations such as GDPR, TCPA and others. An SMS text marketing tool ensures compliance and also enables you to remain consistent with campaigns using features like automations.

How many texts per day is too much?

There is no set golden rule for how many messages you should be sending to a consumer. At a minimum, we suggest one message per week to keep your customers engaged and interested. And at a maximum, one well-timed and relevant message per day has also shown great success for many brands. Your ideal frequency of messages varies based on what you sell and who you sell to. If you’re not too sure how many to start with, ask your dedicated Recart Customer Success Manager for advice.

Next Chapter
9 Benefits of eCommerce SMS Marketing