11 Ways to Use SMS for Business Communication

Posted on March 20, 2023

In today’s fast-paced business environment, reaching customers anytime, anywhere is critical for staying ahead of the competition. For this reason, SMS for business communications has become an essential component for developers to integrate into their company or clients’ applications. By doing so, developers expand the applications’ capabilities while offering a wider range of services to end users.

Why Your Company or Client Needs SMS for Business 

SMS is a convenient, fast, and reliable form of global communication accessible through all portable devices. And current statistics on SMS messaging demonstrate its impact. While emails may remain unopened for days, with an open rate of only 28-33%, SMS messages are usually received and viewed immediately—in fact, 97% of SMS messages are read within 15 minutes of receipt. 

As a developer, incorporating SMS messaging capabilities into your company or client’s applications benefits those companies in many ways.

  • According to the above stats, the average delivery time for an SMS message is less than 10 seconds, ensuring information is received quickly instead of waiting for customers to access emails. 
  • In addition, SMS open rates are five times higher than that of email. Most users use sound or vibration alerts to signal message receipt, motivating them to read the texts immediately. 
  • Since SMS messages convey a more personal tone, a casual and friendlier approach can be used in place of traditional marketing language.
  • Surveys and polls sent via SMS can be completed quickly for timely customer feedback. 
  • SMS for business is more cost-effective than traditional marketing solutions due to its higher open and response rate. This translates to a higher return on investment.
  • SMS is permission-based, enabling customers to opt-in to receive messages.
  • Marketing campaigns are trackable through SMS marketing automation tools so that businesses can monitor which ones are the most effective.
  • Unlike spam emails, text messages won’t default to the spam folder as marketing emails often do. 
  • With powerful APIs, businesses can ensure their messages are successfully delivered and troubleshoot any messaging failures. Should a fix be required, a reliable API can be integrated in minutes, saving developers hours of coding time.

Related: The Benefits of an SMS API to Send and Receive Business Text Messages

How SMS is Used For Business Communications

Integrating SMS communications into your company or client’s software systems can pave the way for a number of beneficial uses that can boost productivity while increasing customer engagement and satisfaction.

1. Appointment reminders and scheduling

SMS message reminders and scheduling can be powerful tools to ensure customers remember appointments and other events. A quick reminder sent directly to their phone can help prevent costly no-shows. Text-based appointment reminders can also offer customers a way to modify or cancel their appointments as needed.  The resulting open slots can be given to other customers, resulting in labor cost efficiency. 

2. Billing and payment notices

By utilizing SMS for businesses, companies and organizations can send reminders and payment notices to customers quickly and effectively. Subscribers will receive these notices with minimal effort from their end, creating an easy way to coordinate recurring payments.  This feature can be more efficient than sending email reminders that often remain unread. 

3. Order updates

SMS is also used to notify customers that their orders were received and are in the fulfillment process. Once items are shipped, tracking numbers and estimated delivery times can be sent so that customers know when to expect their orders. Customers may develop a greater trust in the brand by staying informed in the delivery process. 

4. Updates, promotions, and event reminders

From providing regular updates about products and services to managing promotional activities and event reminders, SMS for businesses offers many advantages over traditional marketing methods. 

For example, companies can send personalized marketing texts based on the customer’s purchase history and interests. By customizing messages in this manner, customers stay engaged and better informed.  Many businesses also enable customers to enter contests and sweepstakes through SMS by simply texting back a code or other prompt. Coupons and discounts can also be sent via SMS to encourage customers to make additional purchases. 

5. Customer surveys and polls

SMS surveys and polls allow businesses to go beyond traditional, often time-consuming online questionnaires. They can provide instant customer feedback, boost customer engagement, and are easy and cost-effective to deploy. By using SMS survey software, businesses can easily create and customize surveys to send out immediately or schedule them for transmission later.  The software also enables real-time response compilation, deliveries, and other statistics are efficiently tracked. 

6. Time-sensitive messages

Time-sensitive communications can easily get lost in the shuffle of emails and pop-ups. SMS communications are an excellent way to ensure customers stay informed of unexpected service disruptions and other time-sensitive conditions. 

7. Internal company communications

In addition to providing an efficient means for communicating with customers, SMS for businesses can also provide a time-saving platform for internal communications. Team members don’t have to log onto their company intranet or sign into their email accounts to receive time-sensitive information. Instead, texts are received immediately for meeting reminders, shift scheduling changes, security alerts, and other essential corporate communications. 

8. Dispatching and logistics

Continuous communication is vital for logistics, transportation, and service companies to ensure that goods and services are efficiently delivered. By using SMS, companies can stay connected to their drivers and service technicians through their mobile devices.  SMS provides fast and easy communication to ensure real-time updates for all involved parties. Messages can be immediately transmitted in broadcast format to ensure everyone is notified simultaneously of any significant changes or updates in services or deliveries. 

9. Security authentication

Businesses are widely using SMS for two-factor (2FA) security authentication, increasing security measures across their software. A user’s identity is verified by receiving a unique code or one-time password text to the registered phone number to access the secure website.  Multifactor authentication adds an extra layer of protection to prevent unauthorized access to a user’s sensitive information. This extra layer of security is especially vital for safeguarding financial records such as banking and credit card accounts. 

10. SMS proxy services

Companies can mask or obscure private corporate numbers when sending texts by using an SMS proxy service. The proxy service is helpful for customer service teams when they share the same phone number for service support requests. Businesses can also use separate SMS proxy numbers to test different marketing campaigns to see which receives the most responses. SMS proxy numbers are also used in company internal communications for employees to send input and feedback anonymously.

11. Powerful SMS APIs optimize service

Third-party Application Programming Interfaces, or APIs, connect business applications with SMS services. These interfaces contain built-in features that can assist in delivering and monitoring text communications. APIs also facilitate the fast delivery of thousands of texts simultaneously, which is necessary for sending marketing communications.  

Related: Build vs Buy: Essential Considerations When Choosing to Build or Buy an API to Integrate SMS Into an App

APIs often include real-time analytics to monitor text message delivery and message return and open rates. These useful analytics signal bottlenecks or other SMS delivery interruptions. 

Key Benefits of Integrating SMS with APIs 

In addition to enhancing internal and external company communications, SMS improves your company or client’s business messaging capabilities in the following ways. 

  • The SMS API can be easily integrated into every business app, CRM, or software platform, eliminating the need for users to log into separate accounts for messaging.
  • The native design of SMS APIs allows them to operate efficiently and are less susceptible to incompatibility issues.
  • An SMS API can be easily updated and customized, allowing developers to make updates without coding a completely new application. 
  • Robust security features including user permissions and sharing rules can be added to maintain control of information.
  • Delivery receipts can be added to the API to verify when each message was delivered and received. This information can help identify any delivery issues and identify inactive numbers. 
  • Features such as the ability to send and receive bulk messages for specific user groups, such as marketing and sales departments, can be added to the API.
  • An SMS API is highly scalable in the cloud, allowing business users to quickly and easily expand the number of users without bandwidth limits.  

Getting Started with SMS for Business Communications

While integrating an SMS API into your company or client’s new or existing business platform streamlines their communications, building an SMS API from scratch can often be expensive and time-consuming. For this reason, partnering with the right third-party provider to implement pre-made, customizable API solutions offer the advantages of scalability, enhanced security, and greater reliability. 

Flowroute’s carrier-grade SMS capabilities break down communication barriers while providing appointment reminders, proxy number messaging, two-factor authentication, and more. Made by developers, for developers, our APIs can maximize your company’s SMS interactions to create a seamless customer experience with intelligent, personalized text interactions.  Contact us today for more information on how our SMS for business technology can take your company’s text interactions to the next level.