Global mobile business messaging traffic will increase by 10% this year to 2.7 trillion messages, up from 2.5 trillion last year, according to analysis from Juniper Research.
The A2P Messaging: SMS, RCS & OTT Business Messaging 2020-2025 report finds that this growth will be largely driven by the retail sector, with rising e-commerce sales during the COVID-19 pandemic leading to an increase in the number of messages sent to customers – for example, 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, from 336 billion messages in 2019 to 408 billion in 2020.
The research also finds that SMS has proven resilient during the pandemic due to the messaging format’s ubiquitous nature, estimating that SMS will comprise 98% of all mobile business messaging traffic in 2020. The research notes that investment into alternative protocols, including RCS and OTT messaging, has slowed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and anticipated further economic downturn.
Operators’ revenue from SMS business traffic is expected to reach $50 billion (€42.43 billion) in 2025, increasing from $39.6 billion in 2020. A reduction in illegitimate traffic due to the implementation of AI-powered SMS firewalls is helping to drive this growth.
Further, 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 users.