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Everything you need to know about SMS analytics 

Fatima Puri
minute read
Table of contents:

SMS analytics give your business an insight into user actions. Tracking SMS analytics is crucial because it helps you measure the success of your SMS efforts for your different use cases. 

Once you collect the initial data, you can set a benchmark and then decide what you want your SMS goals to be.

What are the most commonly used SMS metrics and why?

The most commonly used SMS metric for your business will vary depending on your use case, but the following are the most tracked metrics for SMS across the board. 

Delivery rate: The percentage of your messages that are actually delivered to your recipients. You want to track your delivery rate to know that your messages are going through properly. 

How to calculate delivery rate: (number of texts delivered / total number of texts sent) x 100

Unsubscribe rate: The percentage of unsubscribes you receive. A high unsubscribe rate might indicate that your content is not relevant or useful. 

How to calculate your unsubscribe rate: (number of unsubscribes / total number of texts delivered) x 100

Response rate: The percentage of responses you receive from your contacts. You want to track your response rate to know that your texts are getting engagement. The average response rate for SMS is 48 percent.

Time to response: How long it takes your receiver to respond to your message. SMS is meant to be instantaneous and the average response time is 90 seconds.

Click-through rate (CTR): The percentage of clicks on a link sent via SMS. If you’re sending links in your marketing campaigns, then you want to know that they’re being opened. 

Time to resolution: The amount of time it takes for your agents to resolve a conversation. It’s important to know how long it takes to close a conversation on SMS to see if it’s an efficient communication channel for your company. 

Messages sent: The total number of messages sent by your department. You want to know that your team is using SMS.

Messages received: The total number of messages received by your department. You want to know that your recipients are using texting. 

Time of response: The amount of time it takes your agent to respond to a message. You need to know the average time of response to set a proper service-level agreement. 

How to use SMS analytics for different types of use cases

Every use case has a unique set of metrics that are best to measure. Here are the best SMS metrics to measure based on your use case. 

Customer support SMS metrics to track and why 

The main SMS metrics that support teams need to track revolve around giving customers a faster experience on their preferred channel. The three main metrics support teams should track are the number of inbound messages they receive, time to resolution, and the number of conversations each agent can handle. 

Customer support teams need to track the number of inbound conversations they get to understand if texting is a popular communication channel for their customers. If your agents receive a low amount of inbound text messages, then you need to consider ways to make your texting number more available to customers. 

The second metric that’s crucial for support teams to track is time to resolution — how long does it take your agent to resolve a customer conversation? Once you understand how long it takes your agents to resolve a conversation via text, you can compare how texting is doing to your other support channels (i.e., email, phone call, live chat.)

Along with time to resolution, it’s a good bet to also keep an eye on the number of conversations an agent can handle at a time. Compared to phone conversations, texting allows agents to handle multiple conversations simultaneously. The more conversations your agents can handle, the more efficient they are and the lower your costs are. 

Sales SMS metrics to track and why 

Response rate is a solid metric for sales teams to track. A high response rate indicates that your leads are engaging with your sales team well on SMS. 

Once your leads are engaging with you on text, you want to see how many of them convert by tracking your lead conversion rate. Your lead conversion rate tells you how many of your leads translated to real sales opportunities.

Marketing SMS metrics to track and why

SMS for marketing has a different set of metrics to measure than sales or support. For SMS marketing, the metrics you want to measure are click-through rate, delivery rate, and unsubscribe rate. 

Your click-through rate (or CTR) indicates how many contacts are clicking on the links you send them. You want to make sure your contacts are engaging in the content you send them. 

The delivery rate tells you how many of your messages are going through to your contacts. You want to make sure your contact list is up-to-date and your messages are being delivered properly. 

Your unsubscribe rate will tell you if your content is relevant to your contacts or not. A high unsubscribe rate is an indicator that your content needs to be revamped to be more engaging or useful to your target audience.

Operations SMS metrics to track and why

Operation teams need to track metrics that help them improve their processes to be faster and more efficient. If you’re tracking analytics for your operations department, then you want to focus on these key metrics: time to respond and the time to resolution.

For internal and external operations, you want to know how long it takes people to respond to your messages. A faster response can make the time to resolve an issue quicker, too. For tracking how long it takes to resolve a problem, you want to see how many conversations it takes to get to a resolution. You can compare your texting data to your phone or email analytics to see which medium is the fastest for resolution times.

Tracking SMS analytics 

The best way to track SMS analytics is to use a business texting software like Textline that pulls the data for you.

Using Textline to track SMS analytics 

If you’re a Textline user, you can track more than just the basics in the Textline app. Textline users have access to the following metrics:

  • Time to respond 
  • Time to first response
  • Time to resolution
  • Number of active agents
  • Number of new contacts
  • Unassigned conversations
  • Number of contacts waiting for a response
  • Longest unresolved conversation 
  • Number of unresolved conversations
  • Number of resolved conversations
  • The average number of messages sent to resolve a conversation
  • Number of active conversations
  • Number of assigned conversations
  • Number of new conversations
  • Number of inbound messages
  • Number of outbound messages
  • Number of automations sent

Using Google Analytics to track SMS analytics

Google Analytics offers SMS analytics to help you measure the performance of links in your SMS campaigns. You can create a free account in GA to create custom links and track their effectiveness (CTR, conversion rate, etc.). 

To add link tracking to your SMS campaigns, you will need to create a custom URL in your Google Analytics account. You can learn how to create a custom URL in Google Analytics here. Please note that texting regulations discourage using URL shorteners (i.e., links).

The bottom line

Collecting and analyzing data will help you optimize your SMS efforts for better engagement and higher conversions. Without tracking SMS analytics, you’re not making the most of your SMS efforts.

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