It’s no secret that text message marketing earns some of the highest engagement rates and provides a personal, efficient way of connecting with your customers. 

  • 75% of all US retail consumers signed up for SMS programs from online stores in 2021 
  • Most texts messages are read within 90 seconds of delivery. 

But these messages don’t have to be just marketing in nature – You can also use SMS to send critical order-related messages and other notifications to subscribers of your program.

Why should I use Transactional SMS within my mobile program?

In 2021, Listrak clients’ Transactional SMS campaigns earned an average 16% Click-Through Rate and $1.16 in Revenue Per Send (read our 2021 SMS benchmark report). That’s a significant opportunity if you’re only triggering order updates via email or just sending marketing text messages! 

Marketing broadcasts are the lifeblood of your SMS program, providing frequent touchpoints for customers and prospects to return to your site and reactivate. But we know that as soon as a contact browses, abandons, or purchases, they become more valuable and provide the perfect opportunities for messaging. 

Transactional texts, in particular, can trigger an immediate next purchase, taking advantage of that highest likelihood of buying again - within 24 hours. Additionally, order updates via SMS are no longer a “nice to have” with ecommerce but rather more of a consumer expectation (Remember, 75% of all US retail consumers signed up for programs in 2021!). 

Think about it: How often do you click-through order updates via text vs. email when on your mobile device? Both are important and have their benefits, but providing order updates to your customers via text is efficient, easy, and makes for a great overall experience.

How can I use Transactional SMS alongside my Transactional Emails?

Transactional emails are perfect for sending full order details, including SKUs purchased, billing details, and more, as there’s more space within the message. They also boast some of the highest engagement rates within their respective channel and provide an avenue for dynamic Product Recommendations to encourage further that next purchase mentioned earlier. Transactional SMS supports by satisfying customer expectations of quick updates and reinforcing messaging if an email isn’t opened right away. You can even reference your Transactional emails within text messages, noting that full order details can be found there, and encourage engagement with both channels.

How do I get started with Transactional SMS?

It’s important to remember the rules of acquisition for any mobile program first and foremost (read our previous blog about Acquisition Best Practices). With text messaging, consent to subscribe must be explicit; you cannot scrape for phone numbers, automatically subscribe customers, or buy phone numbers to add to your mobile program. Calls To Action must outline what the program is, what the terms are, how to get help and unsubscribe, and in general, make it clear that by providing a phone number or texting in a designated keyword, you’re consenting to receive text messages.

With Transactional SMS, the best place to collect that consent is during the checkout process when you’re already asking for the phone number to complete an order. The opt-in disclaimer language can live directly underneath the phone number field, accompanied by an unchecked checkbox for the customer to use to provide consent. Then once they type in their phone number, check the box, and submit their order, a welcome text is sent to confirm the opt-in and deliver the additional messaging required by compliance rules.

Once you have explicit consent to opt-in, you can leverage Listrak’s SMS REST API to trigger messages with corresponding order updates. These can be as simple as Order Confirmations and Shipping Confirmations but can also be customized based on your business needs. The most basic messages can still be compelling to your customers and help alleviate customer service issues or decrease calls to your support team.

What should I put in my Transactional SMS messages?

When sending order updates via text message, less is more. Standard text messages allow for 160 unique characters, so sharing a brief order update in one sentence and a clickable link for order management/tracking is best. Remember that your program name is also required to be in each message per compliance rules!

When you send Transactional SMS updates to your customers, you can expect more channel engagement and overall customer satisfaction. Plus, they're easy to set up and one of the most efficient ways to send those critical and highly valued messages.

Get started now!

If you are a current Listrak client, reach out directly to your Account Manager. If you aren’t a Listrak client, click here so we can start the conversation and set you up with SMS quickly.

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