Transactional SMS are event-triggered SMS sent to your device after a specific action like login, money transfer, purchase, etc. All businesses right from banking to E-commerce to even Facebook are using transactional SMS as a way to communicate with their customers.
But wait, don’t we already have emails, calls and other sources? Then why is SMS which seems like a communication service of the past still used to communicate with users?
According to this survey by mblox.com people prefer SMS over other forms of communication.
Also, SMS is something that everyone can access. All the devices in this world support SMS so it automatically increases the open rate of the message.
So now that you know the “WHY” of using transactional SMS let us look at how you can use them in your business and how to look for a good Transactional SMS provider in India.
DND & Non-DND
Did you know you can send Transactional SMS to DND devices as well? In fact, according to this survey by Mobile Market Watch, they are opened almost 98% of the time.
When you look for a transactional SMS provider, make sure they have this service with them.
Also, look for someone who will enable you to send messages all day long and on all days of the week. Unlike promotional SMS, transactional SMS needs 24X7 support.
Easy API Integration
Transactional SMS are sent via the web, but many a time they are not triggered on a website. They are triggered by a CRM system or a controller or a remote device.
These are all different systems with different applications and require different programs that are in different languages like Java, Python, PHP, .Net, etc.
Look for a provider that has an easy API integration with good documentation that is available across various programming languages.
Whether or not your SMS has reached your customer, whether the customer opened the message, read it, etc is important for you to know. Depending on that you can decide if you need to change the content of your text, or the structure of your message, the length of the message, etc.
Having a system that can collect this data and analyse it is important. Only knowing the status of the delivery is not enough, the reason for the message not being delivered, the details of the sender, and the location are very vital.
Transactional SMS may not need photographs or GIFs to engage with the customer unlike promotional SMS, but they might require screenshots, reports, data, PDFs, spreadsheets for the SMS to be effective. Unlike WhatsApp or Email, SMS only has 160 characters and conveying your message within that number of characters effectively is important.
Your SMS API must support sending SMS with attachments without any additional costs.
Multi-platform SMS is important especially when your business is other than E-commerce. With communication across all the devices, there also needs to be good communication between the system and the customers.
Having an extensive API that does not limit functionality and is able to club different systems together and function seamlessly is important.
With businesses soaring across the globe, communications must operate easily across the world as well. Choosing software protocols that not only enable communication across different channels but also at a less and affordable price is important.
Along with that SMS in Unicode i.e. in regional languages for effective communication is important.
Structure Of A Good Transactional SMS
For a message to be delivered across effectively, we observe that all forms of messages be it E-mail, marketing, advertisement etc come in a predetermined structure.
That structure is necessary to keep the reader hooked and also not seeming click-bait is important. Let us look at common types of transactional SMS and their structures;
- Banking: These messages usually start with stating the bank account of the user. After that, the message is conveyed in a short and crisp way. After that we see the user is urged to take an action either by calling, filling up a form, replying or clicking on the links.
- E-commerce: These messages start with your name, your order number/phone number. After that within 2 to 3 lines you are told about your order status and again are urged to click through.
- Reminders: These messages start with your identification, your appointment number and shortly letting you know about the appointment.
With these three types, we can summarize a structure of a good and effective transactional SMS
We hope after this you can easily implement a Transactional SMS strategy for your business. Do you know any better strategy or have we missed anything? Or do you need to clarify any of the strategies given above? Free feel to let us know in the comments below.