According to a new study by Juniper Research rising eCommerce sales during the pandemic are leading to an increase in the number of messages sent to customers, and within retail, mobile business messaging is being used to issue order confirmations, dispatch notifications, tracking information and delivery updates.
The report forecasts that mobile business messaging traffic attributable to the retail sector will grow by 20% this year, with volume increasing from 336 billion in 2019 to 408 billion in 2020.
According to Juniper Research, consumers’ increased reliance on online retail service has been the primary cause of growth this year.
Additionally, the report predicts that retailers will be early adopters of media-rich messaging services, with brands embracing rich media to provide interactive elements, such as real-time order tracking, to its users.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly accelerated digital transformation in the retail sector, as footfall in physical locations is predicted to remain stunted by public concern,” says research author Scarlett Woodford.
To fully capitalise on this, brands must create personalised retail experiences through rich media content, subsequently driving consumer loyalty and increasing profits,” says Woodford.
The study shows that the mobile business messaging market is comprised of three main messaging protocols - SMS, RCS (Rich Communication Services), and OTT (Over-the-Top) messaging applications.
The report als found that SMS has proven resilient during the pandemic, owing to the messaging format’s ubiquitous nature, estimating that SMS will comprise 98% of all mobile business messaging traffic in 2020.
However, the research also notes that investment into alternative protocols, including RCS and OTT messaging, has slowed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and anticipated further economic downturn.