Trends and Insights

SMS Marketing by the Numbers: 30+ Texting Statistics You Need to Know

Published
Sep 1, 2022
Written by
Kayla Ellman
Kayla is a Senior Content Marketing Manager at Attentive. You can find her binge-reading, baking from her (rapidly growing) cookbook collection, or exploring local hiking trails.

These essential SMS marketing statistics prove why text messaging is a high-value channel for both brands and consumers. 

Did you know that more consumers than ever are signing up for texts from their favorite brands? This trend isn’t surprising given their rising expectations for convenience and personalization. But opting in to SMS is also a way for consumers to stay in the know and make sure they don’t miss out on timely offers or product updates. 

For brands, text messaging has evolved into a powerful, owned marketing channel that helps them strengthen their customer relationships, while also driving revenue and retention. 

We've compiled a list of must-know texting statistics about why SMS marketing works, what makes consumers opt-in, how it improves the shopping experience, and more.

The impact of text message marketing

Part of what makes text messaging so effective for marketers is its immediacy. They can reach their subscribers—and inspire them to make a purchase—within minutes. But it's also a direct channel to keep engaging with them after the sale and increase customer loyalty.

Chart: When was the last time you clicked the link in a brand's text message to purchase something?
  • Nearly 96% of marketers using text messaging say it's helped them drive more revenue, and almost 60% say it’s significantly or overwhelmingly increased revenue generation.
  • 69% of marketers are using SMS for retention marketing in 2022, up 10% from 2021. 
  • 58% of marketers see a measurable impact on customer reengagement and retention after implementing SMS; 49% see an impact on customer acquisition.
  • SMS is a top source for collecting first-party data: 81% of retailers either already use it to gather first-party data, or are planning to. 

Consumer perspective on SMS marketing

Consumers have embraced text messaging to interact with brands. As SMS adoption continues to grow, it's important to understand consumers' preferences and why they see SMS as a high-value channel that improves their shopping experience. 

Rising adoption 

  • 91% of consumers are interested in signing up for texts from brands.
  • 81.2% of consumers are opted in to at least one brand’s text message marketing program, but many are subscribed to more than one.
Chart: How many brands' SMS marketing programs do you subscribe to?
  • From the end of 2020 to the end of 2021, the percentage of US consumers who opted into SMS marketing from brands increased by 26.1%.
  • If international markets follow a similar growth trend, up to 60% of global consumers could be opted into SMS marketing programs by early 2023.

Sign-up incentives and messaging preferences  

  • Dollar-off discounts are consumers’ #1 preferred incentive when signing up for a brand’s text messages. Percentage-off discounts and free gift with purchase offers are both ranked at #2.
  • But non-promotional incentives also work, with loyalty or rewards points ranked at #4, and access to exclusive discounts and entry into a giveaway tied at #5.
  • Consumers are value-driven, ranking incentives/coupons and loyalty benefits as the top two types of marketing messages they’re interested in getting from brands.
  • 58% of consumers want to hear from brands multiple times per week, while 18% say they’re open to getting marketing text messages once per day.
  • 51% of consumers say they’re more likely to make a purchase if they receive text messages with images and media, while 33% say they don’t have a preference between SMS or MMS as long as the message contains relevant information.

Impact on the shopping experience 

  • Consumers say it’s easier to take advantage of deals and discover new products via SMS: 79.6% rank this as one of the top reasons opting in to a brand’s SMS program improves their shopping experience.
  • Nearly 67% of consumers say they feel more in control of the brands they want to hear from via text and can better curate their shopping experience.
  • 58% of consumers say getting restock alerts via text makes it easier for them to purchase previously sold-out products.
  • 58.4% of consumers say getting texts about limited-time releases and new product launches allows them to act on deals faster.
Chart: How does interacting with a brand via text messaging positively improve your shopping experience?

Conversational commerce and the customer experience

SMS is a conversational channel that allows brands to engage shoppers in real-time—while they’re actively browsing—and help them make purchasing decisions faster. Not only are consumers open to texting back and forth with brands, but they also say it improves their overall customer experience.

  • 30% of consumers reach out to a brand when they’re deciding what to buy, or if they have a question about sizing‍, material, or fit.
  • Over 90% of customers expect a response within one day when they reach out to a brand, and 74.8% expect to hear back from a real person.
  • 64.2% of customers also want the ability to have a back-and-forth conversation when communicating with a brand. 
Chart: Rank your top 3 expectations when communicating with a brand.
  • Nearly 70% of consumers want to receive customer support from brands via SMS and get answers to their questions in real time.
  • 56.7% of consumers rank "personalized responses" as one of the top three reasons SMS improves their shopping experience. 

Retail trends and consumer shopping habits

The ebb and flow of industry trends often shape consumer behaviors and shopping habits. E-commerce is projected to rise steadily over the next few years, while consumers are expected to use their phones more and more to browse and buy. 

Discover more marketing trends and insights, or learn how to get the most out of your SMS program and strategy.

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