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The Benefits of Mobile Shopping With SMS (Part 4)

Posted on 3.20.2017

Last month, we got to meet a new character in the five-part comic series based on SMS text messaging’s business applications—lead character Sam’s grandmother-in-law simply known to us as “Gran.”

We’ve gotten the chance to see Gran’s sense of humor, and this month, we also get a glimpse of just how tech savvy she is as she makes an online purchase entirely on her mobile device.


On top of maneuvering the online shopping experience seamlessly, Sam is also impressed that Gran has not only discovered how to, but actively kept up on, tracking the status of her digital purchase via SMS.

However, Sam is left scratching his head when Gran reveals to him what she’s so intent on tracking until it arrives on the doorstep: A gramophone.

Gran is not only technically advanced, but she must have purchased her gramophone from a digitally savvy retailer as well. Research shows that despite an overwhelming preference by consumers for notifications via SMS, only the most innovative of retailers are currently taking note.

In fact, 77 percent of consumers today are likely to have a positive perception of a company that offers texting as an engagement channel for notifications like package delivery updates, sales announcements, discounts and authentication codes. This is largely due to people's preferences for text messaging in general. Ninety-seven percent of U.S. smartphone owners text at least once a day, and they open their messages within 90 seconds of receiving them.

However, an astounding 71 percent of retailers are currently not addressing their customers’ communication preferences, and consumers are becoming overwhelmingly frustrated with being tied to a phone or computer for customer service needs. In a recent poll, 79 percent of retailers that used SMS with consumers saw either an increase in revenue or improved customer experience.

Find out other ways SMS can be harnessed for business and tune in for next month’s final installment: Sam’s wife shows him a thing or two about choosing the right supplier.

Andy Shirey is senior product manager at OpenMarket, Seattle. Reach him at [email protected].

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