Fishing for Customers? Get More Bites With SMS

feature image for why SMS marketing

Every day, two fishermen go down to a lake and they each drop a fishing pole in the water. Most days they both catch a similar amount of fish and they’re happy with their respective hauls. 

Then one day, one of the fisherman shows up to the lake with two fishing poles. The other fisherman, who only brought one pole, sees his competition pulling more fish out of the lake than ever before.   

The fisherman with the single fishing pole immediately knows he’s seen a better way to operate, and every day that he doesn’t bring two poles down to the lake from now on, he won’t catch as many fish as he could. 

Most ecommerce marketers are the fisherman with one fishing pole—the email is the pole you’ve been bringing down to the lake every day. The second fishing pole represents text message marketing. 

For years, marketers have relied on email due to its huge user base, massive return on investment (ROI), incredible speed, stable costs, and the ability to own the relationship with customers instead of relying on third party channels or marketplaces. 

Over the past few years, another marketing channel has burst onto the scene that also checks all the boxes above: SMS marketing. And if you tuned into the Klaviyo Product Announcement Event, you’ve seen first-hand how Klaviyo SMS enables you to create one-of-a-kind customer experiences.

But why should you consider using SMS? Is there an opportunity on this channel with your audience? Is it worth the effort to add text message marketing if you’re already seeing incredible results from email alone?

Keep reading to discover how adding SMS to your email marketing strategy will help you catch and keep more customers. 

Learn about:


How SMS can help you create better customer experiences

Even with a dramatic shift to online shopping in the last year, many consumers still crave an experience that’s similar to what they would get from a knowledgeable salesperson at their local store. 

If you’re looking to better support your customers, SMS can help bridge the gap between in person and online shopping because of its speed, immediacy, and the ability to have two-way conversations. 

Not everyone will want to subscribe to your brand’s text messages, and that’s okay. But 85 percent of customers say they prefer to communicate with their favorite brands via text. 

For those that do subscribe to SMS, you can deliver unique customer experience and drive brand loyalty. Did you know that 54 percent of consumers would like to receive promotions via text message, but only 11 percent of businesses send them this way? 

You can also answer incoming questions via text to get customers the answer they need fast—72 percent of customers are more likely to purchase from a website if the brand can communicate with them about their products in real time, with a real employee, via text messaging.

Receive incoming text messages and reply back to create delightful customer experiences via SMS.
Receive incoming text messages and reply back to create delightful customer experiences via SMS.

By pairing SMS with your email program, you’ll give customers another way to engage with your brand in a way that’s easy and convenient to them.

Use SMS and email together to increase revenue

Why should you consider using SMS in addition to email? While these channels share some similarities, the value of SMS lies in its differences from email marketing.

People read 95 percent of all texts they receive, which means SMS can help you reach a highly engaged audience—and more engagement results in more of your audience entering your store’s sales funnel.

Combine email and SMS into one automation to communicate customers in the way they want to hear from you. 
Combine email and SMS into one automation to communicate with customers in the way they want to hear from you. 

Additionally, because text messages are highly personal and conversational, engagement doesn’t stop at excellent open rates. In fact, promotional text messages have an average click through rate (CTR) of 36 percent—that’s eight times email’s average CTR of 4.5 percent. 

But keep in mind that a brand’s text message audience is usually smaller than its email list, as people are more selective about which brands they’ll subscribe to receive texts from. That’s why marketers who use SMS have the most success when they use it to complement their email marketing efforts rather than replace it.

Send SMS and MMS messages that will engage your customers and get them to your website.
Send SMS and MMS messages that will engage your customers and get them to your website.

But what really matters is the bottom line—all of this engagement leads to a high revenue per recipient (RPR). For marketers using Klaviyo, where text messages make up at least 30 percent of their total messages, their RPR increased 187 percent after adding SMS

Don’t take it from me—GhostBed is seeing a 200x ROI on their welcome series alone.


Own the relationship with your subscribers

Another benefit of text message marketing is that you own the relationship with subscribers. But what does that mean?

Most ecommerce brands use organic and paid social advertising (such as Facebook) and search (such as Google) to reach customers and prospects. 

But this comes at a risk as you don’t own the relationship with your customer—the third party platform does. Not only does this prevent how much customer data you can collect, but they can change the algorithm at any time, making it harder (and more expensive) to reach new audiences. 

These channels limit your ability to accurately target your audience, and customer acquisition costs (CACs) can fluctuate depending on seasonality, current events, and industry demand. 

Many businesses also rely on third party marketplaces (such as Amazon) that restrict the amount of customer data they share with merchants. This makes it nearly impossible for marketers to follow up with customers post-purchase, inhibiting them from capitalizing on opportunities to encourage repeat purchases or create a sense of brand loyalty.

Leverage all your customer data to segment your customers and deliver email and SMS messages at the time that works best for you.
Leverage all your customer data to segment your customers and deliver email and SMS messages at the time that works best for you.

Meanwhile, the world is moving towards enhanced customer privacy by blocking third-party tracking (see Firefox and Apple’s iOS 14 update). Fortunately, this doesn’t affect SMS and email because they don’t rely on third-party data.

When you collect a phone number or email address, you own that information. You can communicate with your subscribers at any time, and there are no algorithms that decide when or how they’ll see your message.

Use SMS and email to reach the right customer at the right time without relying on third parties that dilute your message and prevent you from creating an exceptional customer experience. 


Who should use SMS?

Ecommerce businesses of all sizes should consider testing text message marketing to see the benefit first-hand and understand if it resonates with their audience—and it’s easy to get started

No matter what stage of growth you’re at, SMS can help you get to the next phase of your business. Whether you’re an entrepreneur just starting out, or you’re an established brand looking to add another profitable marketing channel to your arsenal, you can use SMS to reel in shoppers and build your customer base. 

But SMS isn’t just a customer acquisition tool—SMS can also help if you’re looking to drive multiple purchases during the customer lifecycle to increase average order value (AOV), or if you want to incorporate more touch points throughout the buying process to improve the customer experience. 

For industries with higher value products such as jewelry or technology, you can use SMS to prompt prospects to ask questions that might prevent them from making a purchase. If they respond, you can quickly reply back to give them the answers they need. 

SMS can also help if you rely on repeat purchases by allowing you to follow up with customers when it’s time for them to buy again, therefore increasing customer lifetime value (LTV). For those who market for apparel, consumer packaged goods (CPGs), and other replenishable products, this could change the game when it comes to customer retention.  

So, long answer short: Every business can benefit from SMS—and the possibilities are endless.


Catch more customers with SMS

As the old adage goes: Give someone a fish and they’ll eat for a day; teach someone to fish and they’ll eat for a lifetime. I’d like to add that if you teach someone how to fish with two poles, they’ll feast for a lifetime.

The world, and your customers, are moving towards text message marketing. By combining SMS with your email marketing program, you can elevate your messaging to create unique customer experiences your subscribers won’t be able to find on other channels—or with other brands.

Test SMS for yourself to see what it can do for your business.

Wondering what you missed at Klaviyo’s Product Announcement Event? Check out the recap.

Ready to get started with Klaviyo SMS?

Back to Blog Home
Get email marketing insights delivered straight to your inbox.