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Emerging Space: Message Commerce
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Emerging Space: Message Commerce

There is great opportunity for eCommerce brands in the space between these two facts, however. And message commerce is the right tool for exploring it – especially for brands with an eye on the future.

June 18, 2021

Despite the fact that nearly 80% of smartphone users made a purchase online using their mobile device within the last six months, desktop continues to lead B2C conversions over mobile commerce (mCommerce).

There is great opportunity for eCommerce brands in the space between these two facts, however. And message commerce is the right tool for exploring it – especially for brands with an eye on the future.

The Emergence of Message Commerce: Filling a Gap

The first purchase on mobile occurred in 2008. Although the channel has obviously proved a potent driver of growth, brands face a few key challenges (even today) in pursuing scalable eCommerce success outside of desktop environments.

First, to the lament of many marketers, most web sites are still not built with a mobile-first mindset. At the same time, and likely related to this, the explosive growth in browsing on mobile hasn’t kept pace with purchasing.

Until now, this has made mobile a lucrative channel for generating leads, but not necessarily for increasing conversions in like proportion. As a shopping experience, mobile can seem inferior to a consumer looking for more versatility, or speed, or just an easier purchase.

But advancements in SMS eCommerce are closing this gap on mobile – fast.

SMS Evolution: From One-Way Blasts to Full Connectivity

Message commerce is in many ways already here, but the true potential of the channel has only begun to reveal itself to leading-edge marketers and engagement specialists.

At Voyage SMS, we help leading eCommerce brands meet their customers where they are, not only on their phones but in their texts messages, where open rates remain extraordinarily higher than email (as high as 98% to 15%).

We see our clients succeeding with conversions everyday. As we’ve worked in tandem with them on their sales and engagement campaigns, it’s become clear that together we’re witnessing the evolution of SMS eCommerce into message commerce.

In the very near future, this will manifest as brands servicing their customers more fully on their terms, offering a flexible, individualized, full-cycle experience on SMS – that benefits everyone.

  • Text-to-Buy sales flows will speed up checkouts and reduce abandoned carts.
  • Digital wallets, attached to the much more reliable identifier of a phone number, will reduce complexity with conversions, delivering a more seamless experience for customers and fostering greater goodwill and loyalty for brands.
  • Customers can text brands their questions, get them answered, and receive the sort of service a desktop interface can’t offer so easily and that web apps aren’t often focused on providing.

At its core, message commerce is about catching sales pipelines up to consumer experience and expectations.

Message Commerce Is About Quality and Efficiency

Here’s a sample funnel:

  • A user sees an ad on Instagram
  • Swiping up on the ad opens an SMS message
  • User sends the message, your brand replies
  • The user replies “Buy,” and/or you answer their questions
  • Payment/Shipping details are captured and confirmed via app integration, or later, as part of their digital wallet
  • Receipt sent to customer, with a planned delay to allow for shipping and payment adjustments

This keeps transactions simple, highly portable, and versatile among platforms and integrations.

In turn, brands move from struggling to secure and identify leads on mobile for later desktop conversion – to guiding consumers from interest to purchase with less effort, right within their messages.

Future Use Cases: Data-Driven Growth

Already, we’re seeing early versions of this sort of buyer engagement pay dividends for clients.

Utilizing SMS to close the gap between mobile browsing and desktop conversion ensures that brands’ highest-engagement marketing channel is more closely aligned with their sales channels.

  • For single SKU or low assortment brands that sell through direct channels, offer basic subscriptions, or want to upsell or maintain reorders, message commerce can lead to incredible growth.
  • Retailers and restaurants will soon be able to offer contactless checkout via SMS. Customers can pay their bill by texting a number on their receipt.
  • Non-profits and political organizations can collect donations more quickly, and at greater scale.

In all these cases, brands and organizations leveraging message commerce will continue to build data-driven customer lists and segments that can be immediately applied to further optimize and grow sales.

But this is only the beginning for message commerce.

Take Your Brand Into The Future with Message Commerce

The technology required to secure this future is already here, and marketers and sellers looking to stay ahead would do well to keep pace with this exciting new frontier in eCommerce.

With our best-in-class SMS eCommerce platform and our dedicated experts blazing the trail, Voyage SMS will continue to lead the way towards message commerce.

Interested in partnering with us now, on your SMS eCommerce needs? Request a demo today.

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