SMS Benchmarks

for Ecommerce Marketing

2020 EDITION

You’ve created a thoughtful SMS marketing strategy. 
But the big question is, how is it performing?

Below you’ll find the aggregate data from hundreds of ecommerce stores using SMS, so you can see how your brand's performance measures up. We’ve also included actionable takeaways to help you get the most out of this data as well as ideas for your SMS marketing strategy. Drill down into industry-specific benchmarks to give you the most relevant information for your brand.

Jargon Decoder

UNSUB Rate

The percent at 
which subscribers 
unsubscribe to messages

CTR

Click-through-Rate

Conversion Rate

The percent of which 
subscribers purchase

EPM

Earning per Message

All Industries

If your shop doesn’t fit into one of the listed verticals below, 
this is a great catch-all starting point for looking at your 
SMS performance.

Image_bg
PS_BenchmarkReport_AllIndustries
Message TypeMean UNSUB RateMean CTRMean 
Conversion RateMean EPM
Campaign0.9%9.8%1.4%$1.04
Abandoned Cart2.4%16.2%9.1%$8.11
Customer Winback1.5%7.5%1.1%$0.69
Loyalty Offer1.0%14.6%2.2%$1.12
Welcome Series3.1%10.3%2.0%$1.78
Keyword3.0%30.3%7.7%$5.79

What to Do

1

Setup an Abandoned Cart series! Across every industry, abandoned carts CTR, conversion rate, and EMP are incredibly strong 💪.

2

Use Keywords: With the highest CTR of all SMS messages and killer EPM, keywords are a foolproof strategy to build your list and revenue.

3

Go Easy on Campaigns: Less is more with campaigns across the board. While they have some of the lowest unsubscribe rates, they also have lower EMP, conversion rates, 
and CTR.

How many distinct SMS opt-ins should we have?

Fully ramped shops using SMS had 3-4 different SMS opt-ins.

Apparel

From streetwear to swim trunks, athleisure, and everything in between, these are the SMS benchmarks for apparel brands.

Image_bg
PS_BenchmarkReport_Apparel
Message TypeMean 
UNSUB RateMean CTRMean 
Conversion RateMean EPM
Campaign0.9%9.7%1.5%$1.23
Abandoned Cart1.9%15.7%9.7%$9.19
Customer Winback1.1%7.8%1.4%$0.84
Loyalty Offer1.0%14.8%2.9%$1.44
Welcome Series2.6%9.7%1.8%$1.66
Keyword3.1%28.8%6.9%$5.83

What to Do

1

Set up abandoned cart & keyword: No surprise here—they’re money in the bank.

2

Experiment with a Loyalty Offer: With one of the higher CTR’s, this is a good indicator that with the right offer, you can likely increase conversion rate and EPM. We recommend A/B testing different creative or offers to see what resonates with shoppers.

What subscriber source performs the best?

The majority of subscribers are acquired either at checkout or via texting in a keyword.

Keyword subscribers have 30-40% higher click through rates, EPM, and conversion rates compared to checkout subscribers.

Home Goods

It takes a lot to decorate a home! From candles to beds, and beyond, all the items that go in your home or products that you use within a home belong here.

Image_bg
PS_BenchmarkReport_HomeGoods
Message TypeMean 
UNSUB RateMean CTRMean 
Conversion RateMean EPM
Campaign1.0%13.0%2.0%$1.09
Abandoned Cart2.6%18.4%9.6%$8.46
Customer Winback3.5%5.9%0.4%$0.24
Loyalty Offer0.8%18.0%2.4%$1.46
Welcome Series2.7%11.6%2.6%$3.04
Keyword3.3%26.7%7.3%$6.70

What to Do

1

Build a Welcome Series: After you’ve set up an abandoned cart series and keyword, work on a welcome series.

2

Skip win-backs: Of all the SMS automations to focus on, win-backs are the least worth your while when getting started. Save these for a rainy day after you’ve fine-tuned abandoned carts, keywords, and a welcome series.

Beauty/Cosmetics

Whether you’re in the business of selling lip-kits, haircare or skincare products, this is the data for you.

Image_bg
PS_BenchmarkReport_BeautyCosmetics
Message TypeMean 
UNSUB RateMean CTRMean 
Conversion RateMean EPM
Campaign0.9%8.8%1.0%$0.67
Abandoned Cart2.2%14.8%8.2%$6.29
Customer Winback0.8%6.6%1.0%$0.52
Loyalty Offer1.2%11.6%1.2%$0.36
Welcome Series3.6%9.6%1.7%$1.03
Keyword3.0%30.9%7.3%$4.62

What to Do

1

A/B test your Abandoned Cart: The EPM for beauty and cosmetics abandoned carts is huge. Spend some extra TLC making sure yours is irresistible. 

2

Incorporate a keyword across different channels: Keywords are solid performers for this industry. Try using keywords on Instagram, product packaging, and email marketing.

Food & Beverage

Coffee, snacks, meal prep— people need to eat and drink!

Image_bg
Benchmark_FoodBeverage
Message TypeMean 
UNSUB RateMean CTRMean 
Conversion RateMean EPM
Campaign0.8%8.4%1.3%$1.05
Abandoned Cart2.6%15.5%8.5%$5.92
Customer Winback1.4%6.4%0.8%$0.57
Loyalty Offer0.8%12.1%1.6%$0.85
Welcome Series2.7%9.6%1.3%$0.70
Keyword2.5%25.8%7.2%$4.00

What to Do

1

Create a loyalty offer: Consumables are great business for repeat buyers. A loyalty offer or program is a solid way to incentivize folks to keep purchasing.

Health/
Wellness

Health & Wellness is big business in 2020. With consumers concerned about their mental and physical well being, and many shoppers thinking about self-care.

Image_bg
PS_BenchmarkReport_HealthWellness
Message TypeMean 
UNSUB RateMean CTRMean 
Conversion RateMean EPM
Campaign0.9%8.9%1.4%$0.86
Abandoned Cart2.5%17.0%9.5%$5.53
Customer Winback1.7%9.9%1.1%$0.65
Loyalty Offer0.4%13.9%2.2%$1.28
Welcome Series5.1%7.4%2.5%$1.30
Keyword2.2%37.3%10.6%$5.97

What to Do

1

Design a loyalty offer: If you’re just getting started with SMS, we’d go against conventional wisdom here and advise you to build out a loyalty offer before spending a ton of time on a multi-touch welcome series. Why? Loyalty offers have the lowest unsub rate, high CTR, and are about the same in terms of conversion rate and EPM when stacked against a welcome series.