The Pros and Cons of SMS Marketing

Don't know the weight of SMS marketing in your business? In this article, we will look into the pros and cons of SMS marketing for you to see if it's worth it for your business.
Benard Kiplangat
Benard Kiplangat

Content Writer

Reading time: 5 minutes

In today’s world where everyone is almost always busy, it is becoming increasingly harder to connect effectively with customers. But thanks to SMS marketing, people rarely stray far from their phones.

Statistics reveal that over 60% of businesses are planning to use text messaging for marketing, and you’re probably thinking about it too. But will SMS marketing work for you?

To answer that question, we compiled a list of the pros and cons of SMS marketing so you can weigh them out to see if it will work for your business!


How can businesses use SMS marketing?

Abandoned cart recovery

Abandoned carts are one of the biggest challenges e-commerce businesses face. Whether the reason why shoppers abandon their carts is that they forgot or they simply weren’t ready to buy, this has cost businesses billions of lost revenue.

Fortunately, several SMS marketing platforms integrate with e-commerce sites and marketplaces to make use of advanced abandoned cart recovery reminders through text messaging. 

That way, it becomes easy to remind customers to proceed with the checkout processes without getting it overlooked in an email.

Coupons or discount codes

Though businesses use different channels to share coupons and discount codes with their customers, SMS marketing is one of the most effective ways to share them.

That’s why sending these marketing messages via text messaging encourages customers to visit their websites to make a purchase.

Limited time offers

Another way that businesses use SMS marketing is to leverage the advantage of immediacy with urgent, limited-time offers like free shipping and flash sales.

Businesses use SMS marketing to drive sales that demand immediate attention, which would be impossible or hard with other channels, like emails.


Announcing events through SMS is a robust way to increase attendance and boost your brand awareness. Moreso, text message marketing is more reliable because of its high open rates and engagement.


SMS marketing gives businesses the ability to create polls, reviews, and surveys to let customers air their voices through voting for a solution, someone, or an event.

The pros of SMS marketing

High open rates

Unlike other marketing channels, text messages have the highest open rates. The highest open rates often reveal the potential of a marketing campaign to be successful. And because SMS has the highest rates, the chances are always higher too.

Statistics show that the average open rate for text message marketing campaigns is 98%, compared to 20% for email marketing.

Most of your customers own a smartphone that can receive both emails and SMS, but they will often open and read a text message over an email. Thus, it is a more effective way to build brand awareness and promote your products and services. 

High conversion rates

The average SMS marketing conversion rate is 29%, which is much higher than other digital marketing channels like email (~3%), Google ads (~3%), and Facebook ads (~9%). 

That means that your customers are more likely to take an action after receiving your text message than if it was through any other channel.

Cost effective

Text messaging is one of the more affordable marketing strategies compared to billboard ads, television advertising, PPC advertising, and other channels. If you are still a new business and trying to look for a cheaper alternative, SMS marketing can work for you.

Furthermore, coupled with the high conversion rates, it means that you will have a better ROI for your marketing efforts. While different SMS providers have different pricing plans, many of them cost just pennies to send text messages.

No technical skill required

To send a message, you do not need to learn how to code or have a high-end design skill experience. You also won’t have to create complex templates to make your messages compatible across devices. 

With SMS marketing, most of the time, all you have to do is just craft your message and hit send!

💡 Wanna steal some templates? Download our message template library for free, with over 100 templates across different industries and use cases!

Send timely messages

A text message can reach your target customer within 5 seconds of hitting the send button. That text will most likely be read within the first 5 minutes upon delivery. 

With text messages, your customers will read your most urgent or time-critical messages almost instantly. It can be the most immediate channel to share time-sensitive information like flash sales and limited-time offers. 

Develop customer relationships

Customers prefer text messaging over traditional ways of contacting businesses because they experience greater responsiveness and personalized communication when they message a business.

After all, the majority of people only use SMS to communicate with friends and family. By reaching out to your customers in such a personal setting, you naturally develop better relationships and communication. 

The cons of SMS marketing

Strict TCPA rules

In 1991, the US Congress passed the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) that restricts telemarketing activities. If you are not aware of the TCPA rules for text message advertising, you may find yourself in trouble if you do not comply.

Moreso, different states have different rules on how they allow marketing activities over the phone through calls or text messages that can cause costly penalties for businesses that may not even be unaware of those regulations.

It is shocking that 44% of firms using SMS marketing are unfamiliar with the TCPA, meaning that many businesses will risk a lot in their businesses, so be sure that you are not among them.

SMS marketing is permission-based

Getting permission can be both a pro and a con of text message marketing in business.

It is more of a con because it is easier for customers to revoke their consent to receiving promotional content whenever they feel it is not right. 

While you can reach an audience who can be genuinely interested in what you may share, one or two consecutive texts that your customers do not want can make them unsubscribe much faster than they could for an email.

Moreso, the touchpoints for text messaging subscription is lesser for text messages than it is for email. 

When a customer opts out of your SMS marketing list, it can be very hard to convince them to opt in again. 

Message length limitation

A standard message length is limited to only 160 characters. That means you’ll have to keep your messages short while still getting the point across. 

Even though you can increase the message length, you may incur additional costs, or your customers may get message fragments if their devices don’t support the extended message length.


Indeed, there’s never a perfect marketing channel without a dark side. As you’ve seen, the pros far outweigh the cons and SMS marketing has a huge potential for your business.

Text messaging has a larger reach than many other channels of marketing. It is also the most direct and intimate channel that customers prefer and with the most favorable results.

When in doubt, remember that many text messaging providers offer free trials for you to test it, so be sure to take advantage of that!

If you’re looking for another alternative to SMS marketing, chat marketing is a great option! It’s affordable and reaches all your customers on their preferred channels (WhatsApp, Messenger, Telegram, etc). Give NovoChat a try today to see what we can do for your business! 👇👇👇

Try NovoChat for free! 🚀

An e-commerce chat marketing platform to grow your sales. 

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