Email vs. SMS: The Difference Between SMS and Email
The choice between Email marketing and SMS marketing is one of the widely discussed topics in the mobile marketing arena for a number of reasons. Email marketing may have industry longevity under its belt, but a one-size-fits-all approach can no longer be relied upon.
To put it plainly, SMS/text messages get noticed easily. They are close at hand, have high open, read and reply rates, and are far less likely to be deleted before reading.
At SMSwarriors we’ve seen businesses using SMS marketing to reach customers, improve engagement with their brand and ultimately increase their conversions. So, let’s go through the differences between email and SMS and understand what they mean to a business.
Email vs. SMS: The numbers
If you are already worried about the increasing number of emails in your inbox, then you must brace yourself for further pain. The daily average of business-related emails increased from 121 per day to 140 per day in 2018.
The volume of businesses using emails is endless, making the marketing platform very clumsy. Just check how many emails you have in your inbox craving for your attention!
On the other hand, individuals receive a very limited number of SMS text messages each day. This is the main reason why individuals increasingly favour receiving notifications and promotions through SMS over email.
Email vs. SMS: Deliverability
It is known that brands often struggle to increase the deliverability of emails. 91% of adults keep their mobile within arm’s reach.
It only takes a few seconds to deliver your message into the hands of the right audience – because texts are usually delivered within 10 seconds.
Email vs. SMS: Open rates
On an average SMS the open rate is 98% which is three times as much as the average email open rate of 27.2%. Emails require a lot of effort to figure out the right subject line, write creative copy and produce a nice design.
The vibration on your mobile often catches your attention – leading to a higher likelihood of an instant pick up.
Email vs. SMS: Response time and rate
The higher response rate of SMS marketing keeps you more engaged with your customers, which means fostering good relationships and ultimately getting more purchases from them.
The response rate from emails is around 6%, which is very low when compared to a 45% response rate from SMS text messages. The average response time of an SMS is 90 seconds which is 2400x faster than email (2.5 days).
Email vs. SMS: CTR and conversions
Email marketing has a click-through rate (CTR) of around 3% while SMS marketing boasts a CTR of 36% in the retail industry. SMS marketing produces more conversions mainly because it keeps your marketing message short and simple.
Email vs. SMS: Quality over quantity
Sifting through clogged up inboxes is an unwelcome drain on busy lives. Despite attention-grabbing visuals, it’s easy for emails to become overwhelmed with content. It’s no wonder they only stand a measly chance of being opened.
While emails can present an attractive opportunity for creativity, texts will win over consumers every time. Short and concise, it’s difficult for a text to wander too far off point – perfect for our shortening attention spans.
Text messaging, especially SMS marketing is perfectly matched to the way we like to consume our information, which is why they garner a 98% read rate.
Email vs. SMS: Smart choices
Mobile phones alert us when we receive a text. Because they’re often within reach, it’s easy for them to monopolise our attention. In fact, our phones will continue to visually remind us of any unread messages. Emails require us to remember to seek them out.
Older generations are also less likely to view emails as something they can’t access on the go. The rate of phone ownership is increasing: around 2 billion people around the globe now own smartphones. This is in stark contrast to the 47% who only have internet access.
This is a real bonus for SMS marketing, especially when it comes to promotions and exclusive offers. Texts also provide an excellent opportunity to get instant feedback from consumers.
Email vs. SMS: Less work, more rewards
Emails can feel formal and stiff, reminding us too much of work. Tackling your over-saturated inbox can feel daunting. It’s understandable that consumers might decide to ignore unrequested mail.
The casual friendliness of a text message is something that brands can tap into – an SMS feels more personal. We associate them more with family and friends than we do emails.
While marketers need to bombard customers with many emails to boost their chances of being read, just a few well-honed texts do the trick.
Mass emails also run the risk of being filtered into spam folders, never making it to the intended recipient. SMS marketers don’t share this concern, as texts have only one place to go – straight to your inbox.
Email vs. SMS: The Winner
So, while both media can be effective, it is clear that SMS marketing is more in tune with the way consumers use technology today. It fits in with their lifestyles and appeals to a growing number of mobile phone users.
This does not mean that email marketing is dead, and that you should only consider SMS mobile messaging. Emails do have a purpose – they are good for long-form content like newsletters. But when it comes to notifications, promotions, and marketing it is better to introduce SMS text messaging into your marketing mix.
Whether you are an SME with a limited budget or a big enterprise which spends millions on marketing, SMS can yield the best return on investment when compared to other traditional marketing channels. It only costs a few cents to send an SMS!
Would you like to get your SMS/text messaging marketing started today? Try our service for free and see what you think.
There’s no set-up fee and no minimum credits. Send your first SMS text message now and be on track to succeed with text message marketing.