Staggering Surge in Brand SMS: You Won’t Believe the Numbers!

In 2023, the world experienced a remarkable surge in brand SMS messages, marked by a 4.1% increase from the previous year, totalling a staggering 13.34 billion messages.

Popularity of “Push SMS”

The surge was largely driven by the popularity of “Push SMS”, predominantly used for tracking deliveries or generating codes for banking apps. On average, around 1.1 billion “push SMS” messages were dispatched every month.

Peak Periods and Dominant Sectors

There were discernible peak periods throughout the year, specifically in November, December, January, and June, coinciding with the Christmas and sales seasons, during which roughly 1.2 billion messages were dispatched. Spanning various industries, over 1,000 brands were responsible for approximately 80% of this message traffic.

The retail sector was especially dominant, accounting for 31% of the total messages, followed by banks and insurance companies at 21%, the services sector at 15%, and e-commerce at 11%. It's worth noting that the e-commerce sector saw a sharp 20% increase in message traffic in 2023.

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Type of Messages

If we breakdown the 13.34 billion brand messages sent in 2023, we find that 8 billion were transactional SMS; these include notifications, access codes, delivery , and payment confirmation messages. The remaining 5.3 billion messages were promotional SMS encompassing advertisements, direct marketing, and drive-to-store messages.

Interestingly, promotional SMS saw a bigger increase, rising by 7.9%, as opposed to transactional SMS that rose by a mere 1.7%.

Change in Telemarketing

A noteworthy development in 2023 was the ban on using phone numbers starting with 06 or 07 for , effective from January 1, 2023. Brands adapted by using five-digit SMS numbers, with 36XXX designated for promotional SMS and 38XXX for transactional SMS. This change offered the added advantage of including the brand name as the sender.

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