SMS has been around forever. But that doesn't mean it's stagnant. And it certainly doesn't mean it’s time to book it into a retirement community or put it out to pasture. Yes, there are new technology trends which tend to pop up every year. But these can work well with SMS. In fact, they’re the perfect pairing with SMS.
SMS has become absolutely ubiquitous. There is no mobile phone user who has never sent or received an SMS. Every device is capable of sending and receiving SMS messages. An internet connection is not necessary. The reality is that all new messaging apps and other alternatives need SMS in some form or another to get started. Most new apps make use of SMS to send a one-time password (OTP) before users can begin using them. The same can be said for large e-commerce and banking institutions which make use of two-factor authentication (2FA) to provide security for users. 2FA uses something customers know, like a password, with something the customer has, like their smartphone receiving a one-time password. This protects the customer from hacking attempts and security attacks. Here are some of the new and emerging technology trends and how they can work together with the ever-present SMS.
Application to Person SMS, or A2P SMS as it’s more commonly known, will continue to grow in 2019. A2P is when companies send SMS messages to their customers from an SMS application. This can be used by companies to send reminders, alerts, one time passwords (OTPs), and many more.
In recent years, customers have shown that they prefer to communicate with businesses using SMS messaging rather than via phone calls.
This is the first step in businesses communicating with customers. But that has proved to not be enough for customers, which brings us to the next step.
As mentioned above, the majority of customers – a massive 64 percent of those who have text messaging capabilities – would prefer to communicate with a business about customer service activities via two-way messaging, rather than over the phone. They tend to feel this is a more efficient and convenient way for them to resolve their queries. Younger people are even more likely to prefer to communicate in this way. They’ve indicated that they would choose to be loyal to businesses which offer this service over those that don’t.
Google’s Rich Communication Services (RCS) business messaging platform is an extension of SMS that businesses can use to improve how they communicate with customers. It’s SMS made better. The biggest benefit of RCS business messaging is that it works on every device and doesn’t require the downloading of an app. RCS offers improved customer service and better customer engagement. It offers the opportunity to personalize communication – something else which customers have come to expect – as well as instant gratification, another important requirement for today’s customers. RCS is to be installed by default on new Android phones. More than 50 carriers support RCS. The rollout of RCS has been described as “frustratingly slow” but this is expected to pick up as new devices are released which support the standard.
It’s clear that not only is SMS here to stay, but that it can work well with new technology trends. A2P SMS, two-way SMS, and RCS are just some of the ways that text messaging can be combined with technology to deliver a better than ever before customer experience. It’s apparent that RCS is the way of the future for communication between businesses and customers. Offering high-quality image sending, group chats, video calls, and location sharing, it’s set to transform how businesses communicate with customers. If you’re interested in reading more about how SMS and RCS can work together for better business success, read our recent article. It unpacks just why your business needs a combination of the two. And needs it now.