When researching the statistics behind SMS advertising, you would be forgiven for thinking the information out there is pretty outdated.
A google search for “SMS advertising statistics” will show a lot of SEO-optimized pages, but you won’t get much use from the content.
Is it too much to ask, to find reliable data to back up your investment in SMS marketing?
If you don’t want to dig through statistics dating all the way back to 2010 (like the infamous 98% text message open rate stat), then you’re in luck. This article looks back through the most recent studies and picks out the real data that you need to know.
This article will stick to two rules for reliability:
Every single fact mentioned below comes from surveys and other research conducted no earlier than in 2015, and preferably in 2018.
2) Clear attribution
There are direct links to original reports rather than just mentioning them.
Text Message Statistics
We should start off by learning how many SMS-enabled cell phones there currently are in the world, how many people own a cell phone, and why text messaging still captures twice as much of the market as any other mobile advertising tool.
1) Out of the world's total 7.9 billion mobile connections, 3.3 billion are associated with basic non-smartphones. This means that text messages still reach 40% of customers that cannot access any other mobile advertising medium. (2)
2) Due to inactive subscriptions and multiple device ownership, the number of subscriptions exceeds the number of unique subscribers. There are a total of around 5.6 billion unique mobile subscribers. (2)
3) Despite the fact that the number of smartphone subscriptions surpasses basic phones (4), feature phones will remain the primary device in many developing markets for a number of years to come. (1)
SMS advertising statistics
Moving on, here’s what marketers need to know about SMS behaviour in 2018.
1) 97% of respondents say they open every text message they receive. For advertising, these statistics of open text messages are great and provide many possibilities. (7)
2) Operator-provided voice and SMS usage in many markets has increased. (2) This is due to the fact that a growing proportion of mobile plans now offer unlimited voice and messaging. (1)
3) The average number of texts received per day by a millennial is 67. The average text response time is 90 seconds. (3)
4) Mobile users send 22 billion texts per day globally. (3)
5) More than 80% of consumers have notifications turned on for native SMS apps. (6)
6) 62% of smartphone users check their phones immediately after waking up. 79% check theirs within 15 minutes of waking up. (7)
Demographics in text message figures
Next, let’s look at some differences in SMS usage between demographic groups.
1) There is a significant gender gap in mobile ownership: women are 10% less likely to own a mobile phone than men in developing markets. (4)
2) Women tend to use mobile services less frequently or less intensively than men. (4)
3) In America, 92% of millennials own smartphones, compared with 67% of people aged 54-72. (5)
Text messaging in business
What insights can we glean into customer attitudes toward SMS advertising?
1) 66% of consumers prefer to reach or be reached by brands via messaging over any other means. (6)
2) 85% of consumers want their text message communication with brands to be two-way conversations. (6)
3) 31% of consumers will respond to an SMS survey. The average response time is less than six minutes. (7)
4) 90% of customers reported a preference for SMS contact over phone calls. (7)
5) 83% of consumers would prefer no more than two text messages from a company per month. (7)
Summary of stats on texting
1) According to the Gartner 2016 Digital Channel Survey, SMS is currently one of the top four most popular advertising tools. Yet 61% of mobile marketers surveyed don’t use it. (8)
2) SMS achieves a 209% higher response rate compared with phone calls, email or Facebook (9)
3) It is estimated that 49 million consumers will opt-in to SMS advertising by 2020 (9)
So, that was 20 SMS statistics you can use to build a foundation for your text advertising efforts in 2019. Just remember that SMS advertising works better when it’s automated, so feel free to learn how you can leverage the power of Apifonica SMS API for text advertising automation, bulk messaging, and SMS alerts here.