SMS technology has been revolutionary in boosting the mobile world, not just for consumers, but businesses as well. How exactly does a company choose the right SMS service provider and what criteria should they look at?
Whether you’re selling insurance or want to notify your customers about a new sale, SMS marketing is an excellent way of reaching out to clients. When it comes to choosing the right SMS service provider, there is a range of factors that businesses need to consider.
Here are the most important criteria.
One of the most important aspects of choosing an SMS service provider is the cost. By design, SMS technology is a cheap and easy way to send messages, which means bulk pricing needs to reflect this as well.
Providers, such as Clickatell, are open about the costs involved with securing an SMS service. When looking at different providers, be sure to ask as many questions about the pricing as possible. These should include knowledge on operation costs, bulk prices, and the price per SMS as well.
Bulk communication systems rely on the speed and the delivery of their messages. Depending on how many SMSes need to be sent, some services can take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours. During this time, it’s possible the messages will also bounce, or not be delivered to the recipient. This is not optimal, and shows a service that will waste your SMS marketing funds instead of correctly utilizing them.
Your SMS service provider should provide stats on how long their systems take, as well as how many messages are delivered.
Your SMS service provider shouldn’t limit service to just your home country. After all, there are plenty of business opportunities in different states and countries as well. The SMS service provider should have the ability to send SMSes to a range of countries. For example, Clickatell empowers businesses to interact and connect with their customers anywhere in the world - covering more than 240 countries, across over 1000 mobile networks.
A necessary feature of any content delivery system is the ability to display in-depth analytics on the service. Information, such as when messages are sent, how many failed, how many were opened, and how many customers replied to the message is all crucial information. These are all necessary metrics you will want to have in a bulk messaging system. This will allow you to plan and tailor your messages accordingly, such as knowing if a specific offer or announcement does better with your market.
The application programming interfaces (APIs) are a set of tools and protocols that allow two systems to ‘talk’ to each other. This enables one system to utilize the features of another one, send information, or receive data. When looking for a bulk SMS service provider, they should have a full set of functional and well-documented APIs.
The company should also have full support for the APIs and the ability to integrate them into existing systems, even open source platforms. After all, it’s far easier to choose a bulk SMS service provider than it is to move your company onto a brand new CRM system just for that.
If you are interested in utilizing SMS technology for your business, have a look at our article on ‘Why your business, big or small, should be using bulk SMS’. It talks about message timing, short codes, and exclusivity for your clients and products.