Infobip Head of Global Enterprise Sales Elvino Krizmanic looks at the impact of SMS in enterprise customer communications, with a focus on the banking sector.
In the enterprise sector, SMS technologies have appeared in many forms and performed different functions over the last 10 or 15 years. During this time, A2P messaging has been widely adopted by banks and financial institutions around the world, as a way of adding value to an array of banking services.
Evolution of SMS solutions for financial institutions
The capacity to easily send messages from within the banking system, and have a dependable partner handle all technical and telco-related aspects appealed to many, because it allowed them to focus on their core business, without wasting resources in learning and implementing a new technology. Integrating databases with a messaging system has opened up a new world of event-based, real-time messaging. The evolution was continuous and solutions very varied, ranging from classic account balance notifications (which have by today become a standard in banking services all over the world), to the more recent introduction of SMS messaging in anti-fraud solutions.
Today, when it is a must for enterprises to build reliable communication channels with their end users in order to drive loyalty, different technologies are explored to fill this role, in the financial business or any other consumer-facing business.
New technologies and solutions emerged, but even the most advanced among them often came to rely on SMS messaging at one point or another, either as the mobile channel with the greatest reach, or as a fall-back solution, as a primary communication channel, or as a secondary means of reaching users. In any case, there is no mobile channel that delivers to all types of phones without a data connection and has read rates of 98%, with 80% read within 5 minutes from delivery. Those advantages of SMS messaging are increasingly put to good use in marketing and customer care environments.
Balance notifications – a necessity in today’s retail banking
At a recent gathering of European banking professionals in Budapest, 85 per cent of respondents replied yes when asked if they consider SMS balance notifications as a necessary option in today's retail banking.
With all this in mind, it is hardly surprising that the number of enterprise services developed around SMS messaging is growing, and that A2P messaging has become a trusted and ubiquitous companion of banking services. While in other segments it has long since found its use in mobile marketing, such as sweepstakes, new products notifications, polling etc., its usage in this sense in the financial industry is also picking up.
SMS services in banking are not a rival technology to feature-rich platforms that emerge as smartphones increase their market share, but should be viewed as complementary and highly beneficial to the consumer. Given its low-cost, high-yield features, SMS is the perfect partner to smartphone-based m-banking services.