*This is a guest post by Yotpo.

The last few months brought enormous shifts in the eCommerce landscape. Time spent on mobile phones increased by 30 percent since March of this year, and messaging has become a top channel for consumers looking to stay connected. In fact, 49 percent of customers said they prefer to engage with brands through SMS during these times.

Consumers are not only spending more time texting; they’re also online shopping from mobile devices more than ever before. Consider the stats:

  • More than 57 percent of consumers are shopping online more than usual
  • Over 65 percent of consumers prefer to shop from their phones
  • Since January, brands have seen a 40 percent increase in revenue per SMS message sent 

Now is the optimal time to invest in marketing channels that engage your customers where they already are: on their phones. To truly connect with customers during this time, brands need to create personalized mobile experiences that drive engagement and nurture lasting relationships. It’s time to launch an SMS marketing strategy that drives ROI and engages your customers at the optimal times. 

SMS Marketing Drives Conversion

With SMS marketing, brands see more than 25x ROI and 6 to 8x higher engagement rates than email. Although email and SMS marketing perform better when strategized together, SMS is uniquely positioned to drive engagement; brands can target shoppers with hyper-personalized messages, including customer care campaigns and special offers, directly on the channel consumers engage with the most. And the stats don’t lie: 98 percent of all SMS messages are opened, and 90 percent of all messages are read within the first three minutes of being sent. 

In May of this year, Yotpo saw a 124 percent year-over-year increase in the number of text messages being sent from brands using SMS marketing on the Yotpo platform. If you are not taking advantage of this channel, there’s a good chance your competitors already are. 

Top Strategies for SMS Marketing

The key to successful SMS marketing is personalization. Here are five ways to target consumers with the right messages based on where they are in the customer journey. 

1. Welcome Series

You can convert new subscribers into high-value customers with an engaging welcome flow. Here are some ideas to consider:

  • Sign-up rewards: Provide a unique one-time reward for subscribing to your SMS channel for maximum engagement
  • Personalized recommendations: Ask customers questions about themselves, and then suggest products they may like based on their answers

 

2. Abandoned Cart


Sending automated, targeted messages to recover shoppers who left products in their cart without completing the purchase is an effective way to nudge them toward completion. 

 

  • Send multi-step messages: Follow up when customers don’t engage with the first reminder message. 
  • Provide incentives: Discount codes, or other special offers, urge consumers to complete their purchases.  

 

3. Limited-Time Offers

You can create a sense of urgency by sending a limited-time offer via SMS. There are several different ways to create these promotions:

 

  • Limited quantities: Only 150 available – act now!
  • Limited time: Flash sale – one day only!
  • Seasonal offers: Back-to-school sale – get 10% off your first order through Labor Day!

 

Limited-time offers also give you an opportunity to send follow up text messages to keep customers engaged, reminding them that they will lose out if they don’t act fast.  

 

4. New Product Launch

When you launch a new product, use SMS to give your most engaged shoppers a feeling of being the first to know. You can also analyze past customer behavior to target those who are likely to be most interested in certain products, and target first-time customers with a special discount or offer to incentive them to purchase.

5. Customer Win-Back

Sending an automatic message at the right time can help to re-engage lapsed customers. Choose the time frame that works best based on your customers’ average repeat purchase rate, and use customers’ purchasing history and shopping behavior to tailor the message flow. Ask questions about your shoppers’ preferences to make the perfect recommendations.

These are just a few SMS strategies for engaging your customers and increasing conversion. You can also experiment with strategies like collecting user-generated content, give back campaigns, and subscription updates

SMS marketing is not a replacement for any of your existing channels; instead, it’s the additional missing puzzle piece your brand needs to create a more complete omnichannel marketing strategy. 

Learn how to start sending personalized messages that drive ROI with Yotpo’s SMS Strategies library. 

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