SMS messages are one of the most efficient tools in the arsenal of marketing specialists all over the world. It’s a quick medium to reach out, attract new leads, or retain already existing customers, set up a seamless flow of information, and constantly stay in touch with the customer base. 

According to Attentive Mobile, SMS usage in marketing campaigns helps to drive revenues, as 96% of marketers who leverage text messages have confirmed this statement.

Considering that SMS messaging is so efficient and profitable, how can you make the most from them and get the maximum result from your efforts? Besides a well-thought strategy and catchy copy, you need to ensure that the messages are delivered correctly and the end-point customers actually get a chance to read them. 

Hence, it’s important to understand what an SMS delivery report is, and how you can monitor SMS delivery. Testelium as a top SMS route testing provider shares the main insights on the matter.

Why is it important to test SMS delivery before launching text campaigns?

So, what is SMS delivery testing, how do SMS delivery reports work and why is it so crucial for those who use bulk SMS for business purposes? 

To answer these questions, we need first to explain how A2P, or application-to-person, messaging works. 

Mobile network operators don’t provide A2P messaging services directly to businesses, as it takes a lot of effort and management to set up. Hence, this niche is taken by SMS aggregators, enterprises who sign contracts with the aforementioned mobile carriers, and cater to businesses who want to send bulk SMS messages. 

At the same time, aggregators may implement different routes to send messages through. There may be a dozen of other SMS aggregators, providers, or resellers in the link between the aggregator and SMS center that will process the message. 

When the SMS center processes the messages and redirects them to the carrier of the final recipient, it sends back a delivery report. It usually shows if the messages were successfully sent or not.  

Sometimes, some violations may take place, as unreliable telecom partners tend to use unlicensed routes, otherwise known as gray ones, to manipulate profits. 

Though mobile network operators suffer the most from such activities, as they lose a significant part of their income, aggregators’ clients experience issues too. Mainly, manipulations with routes lead to a lower percentage of delivered messages, SMS delayed delivery, and fake SMS message delivery reports. 

The latest ones are sent to the enterprises by unreliable aggregators. It is another violation that SMS providers resort to in deliberate attempts to earn “easy” money and charge the clients without fulfilling their obligations. In this case, the enterprise receives a delivery report that states that the messages were sent successfully when in reality it’s a lie. 

The vendors are skilled in such harmful activities, and you won’t receive fake delivery reports on 100 percent of the messages, and some of them may be really delivered. But some parts of them may never be seen by end-point recipients. As a result, you will have compromised statistics on delivery rates and engagement indicators, as well as wasted money.

The “gold standard” for SMS open rates is 98 percent — and it’s significantly higher than emails. 

However, unreliable SMS delivery will jeopardize such an amazing opportunity, as the message will never reach the end-point customer. And this is an answer to the questions we asked at the beginning of this section. SMS delivery testing is a way to ensure that your messages are actually put to use and won’t be lost in the chain. It also helps you to evaluate the partners for bulk SMS delivery and pick the best ones. 

How can Testelium help?

To check and monitor the delivery rates you get on your SMS marketing campaigns, you need to implement additional tools, most likely an SMS testing platform. Testelium is a perfect example of such a software piece. 

Testelium provides real insights into the routes your messages are sent through. It works the next way: you set up a test SMS campaign, and we send test messages to your SMS providers as a regular SMS text. However, unlike with the usual message, we collected valuable data on the SMS delivery, SMS center, the message content, and other parameters that help you understand the quality of routes used. 

It’s also important to notice that our platform can answer your questions when SMS delivery failed. There are different reasons why SMS may be undelivered: the issues may be in the unlicensed routes and untrustworthy providers, but it can also be in the parameters of a certain route, as regulations and rules differ from country to country. 

Either way, the Testelium is an essential tool for your enterprise, if you are heavily relying on SMS marketing and communications. Real analytics on your SMS delivery will deliver additional value and become a cornerstone for optimization and scaling up. 

Without a clear understanding of the ecosystem you are using, it would be hard to grow your SMS communications, as any misstep or failure may undermine your activities. Stay one step ahead and adopt a preventive approach: detect problematic routes before they do any harm.

What can the Testelium delivery report show you?

Testelium delivery report provides you with analytics details you can use to enhance your SMS business communication. 

You can test every SMS provider you cooperate with and get a hold of data that will describe the routes, their quality, and capacities. Hence, you will be able to detect strong routes you can use for scaling up and growing your volumes.

Let’s look through the main points our dashboard displays after the tests.

Delivery status: if you want to receive SMS delivery confirmation, it’s the parameter you should pay attention to. Our platform displays when the message is successfully delivered and when the delivery is failed. Combined with the data from the “vendor delivery” field, you may also analyze the credibility of the delivery reports from the vendor, as the Testelium dashboard detects fake ones. If the vendor delivery is marked as done, but the status of the test is negative, it means that you encountered a fake delivery report, and your provider is running scamming activities and charging you for the void deliveries. 

Delivery time: you will be able to track how much time it takes to deliver a message. Normally, it shouldn’t take more than fifteen seconds. Long delays may mean that the messages go through dozens of intermediates and shady routes. As we have already discussed, it may mean unreliable delivery and other issues with the technical aspects of the SMS ecosystem. 

SMSC verification: we detect what SMS center has processed the message. 

SMS acceptance: it shows whether the message was accepted by the chosen vendor; together with the aforementioned “vendor delivery” field, it helps you understand at what stage the issues have arisen.

Sender ID: it displays how your sender ID was shown on the recipient phone and if it has gone through any change; some routes may not allow alphanumeric sender IDs and with the testing, you will be able to detect such routes and set the future marketing campaigns accordingly. 

Content: the situation with content is almost the same as with sender ID: some routes may not be set to let through non-Latin letters, and Testelium will be able to show if some of the symbols were erased or changed.

Scale your business communications with SMS testing API

To go successfully through scaling up, you need not only to check and ensure the capacities of the routes but also to build your inner environment that will simplify bulk SMS sending activities. 

We suggest gathering all your SMS tools in the SMS text delivery system and automating everything possible. 

For these purposes, Testelium offers an SMS route testing API. Integrate it easily with your platform, set up automated tests in your dashboard, and check the results in the same place. 

Final thoughts

For efficient and growing SMS marketing, you should first take care of technical aspects and make sure of the reliability of your SMS delivery. 
With testing software like Testelium, you will be able to detect and prevent possible issues, provide fast delivery for bulk SMS, higher delivery rates, and access valuable data about the infrastructure you use.