Why do businesses need SMS solutions? It may sound cliché, but the fact remains that we are dependent on our phones for a huge part of our daily lives.
From booking a car, ordering food, banking, and staying in touch with people, our phones are an integral part of our lives. The research proves this, because we spend on average 2.8 hours a day on our mobile phones according to a TNS survey in 2015. This is part of an upward trend, so we’re definitely going to see this number rise in the coming years.
However, with all the focus on smartphones and mobile apps, we have been ignoring a mobile channel common to both smart and feature phones. SMS has been around since the early days of mobile phones. It remains one of the most effective methods to engage mobile users. The dynamics of mobile phone usage has shifted as access to the internet has become more pervasive and affordable. But, there are still uses for SMS beyond messaging.
Let us take an in-depth look at the impact of SMS solutions in a variety of enterprise and consumer activities.
Enhancing Online Security
If there’s one thing true about Southeast Asia, it’s that we love to shop online using our mobile phones. In fact, the region’s internet economy, which includes online travel, eCommerce and ride-hailing players was estimated to be worth US$50 billion in 2017, according to a joint study by Google and Temasek Holdings Pte Ltd.
This unprecedented growth shows great potential for the region. However, it also opens up the issue of online fraud and gaps in online authentication and payment. A huge problem is centered around the lack of consumer education around online security and verification. Passwords have been proven to be ineffective and susceptible to hacking, showing a need for another layer of security. In fact, a yearly round-up of the most common passwords used hasn’t changed much in over a decade, showing how little we have learned.
Passwords have been proven to be ineffective and susceptible to hacking, showing a need for another layer of security.
This led to the use of Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) which adds an additional layer of security. One of the most common methods of 2FA is using SMS to send a One-Time Password to consumers. Therefore, it eliminates the need to remember multiple passwords and reducing online fraud and hacking.
The ease and ability for a quick solution rollout provide businesses with an upper hand in terms of consumer engagement and efficiency with SMS 2FA, versus hardware-based authentication methods like banking security dongles. Banks have now also adopted the SMS 2FA method, with DBS Bank in Singapore offering their customers an option of getting their OTP through SMS or security dongle.
Overestimating The Prevalence Of The Internet
Even though Indonesia is fast becoming the regional hub for online growth and the internet economy, therein lies huge segments of the population that don’t have access to the internet.
The internet penetration rate in rural areas in Indonesia was less than 50% according to research conducted by The Association for Internet Service Providers in Indonesia (APJII). Therefore, SMS solutions remain a preferred method of reaching mobile customers and providing a channel to market. It also facilitates commerce through SMS payment notifications.
Feature phones are extremely cost-effective, and data networks are unable to guarantee 100% coverage in markets like Indonesia. As a result, SMS has become one of the most viable messaging options in the local market. For example, Monex, an Indonesian futures broker, uses SMS for both 2FA and an engagement tool to provide their customers with the latest news and trends.
Enhancing The Logistics Industry With SMS Solutions
One of the main issues many consumers deal with online shopping stems from the lack of transparency in the parcel delivery process. A 24-hour delivery window isn’t ideal and can inconvenience anyone. Combat these issues by adopting SMS messaging solutions for multiple engagement points in the logistics industry. From Singapore’s postal service, Singpost, to regional logistics leader, Lazada, SMS is their preferred choice for customer notifications on deliveries.
There are numerous reasons for the growing use of SMS notifications in logistics in Asia. Here are two of the main reasons:
- One of them is the ability to scale SMS messaging solutions for delivery notifications, verification, or even consumer engagement. There are messaging solutions providers that offer coverage across multiple markets and even global coverage.
- The logistics industry has often suffered from negative consumer feelings. This can occur through missed delivery times and wide delivery windows, which can be frustrating for consumers. Real-time updates through SMS allow consumers to shorten the delivery window time, and reduce failed deliveries.
Learn how to boost customer experience for logistics providers
What Else To Expect From SMS Solutions?
As the world moves towards omnichannel engagement, SMS still has a role to play in consumer engagement, security, and notifications. Consumers will always have different preferences. Compared to those with limited communication channels, brands that leverage multiple channels will always be better at engaging their consumers.
It is likely that the role of SMS messaging solutions will evolve as enterprises and consumers evolve. There will always be a need for a powerful messaging tool like SMS in Asia.