Your Shopify SMS Marketing Campaigns Are Not Working. Here’s Why!

sms marketing campaigns not working on shopify

SMS has the potential to drive 98% open rate and as high click through rates. Is it true? Yes!

Alas! Not every marketer and brand is able to achieve this rate. Why? The average obviously varies from industry to industry, it’s also possible that maybe you got your SMS campaign all wrong.

It’s all about the details. Maybe, you overlooked some small yet critical factors that are hindering your campaigns success.

Let’s look at some key reasons why your Shopify SMS marketing campaigns don’t work.

12 reasons your SMS marketing campaign is not working

1. Not segmenting your subscriber list

Once you collect your subscribers’ phone numbers, what do you do? Do you simply add them to one generic list? If yes, it’s time to work a bit harder. Make your SMS list more meaningful with the help of segmentation.

When you treat all your shoppers the same and target them alike, you’re missing out on the benefits of segmentation big time. Segmentation means segregating customers. You can put them into different segments or categories – age, gender, interests, location, preference, etc.

So how exactly does it help your SMS marketing campaign?

Segmentation will help you approach the right customer with the right messaging instead of sharing a generic message with all customers. You can share personalized and more specific text messages that add value to your subscriber. When subscribers receive relevant marketing messages, they feel more inclined to brands. That way you can outperform your competitors.

2. Not personalizing messages

“The buyer is always tuned in to one radio station: WIIFM (What’s In It For Me). The rest is filtered out as noise,” says author Steve Woodruff in his book Clarity Wins.

And it’s true. 72% of consumers engage with personalized messaging only. Today’s consumers don’t care about generic messages because in this age of content overdose, they’re only looking for something that’s relevant and of value to them.

With data-driven marketing evolving, and consumers becoming more sophisticated, your text messaging needs to be deeply personalized – relevant and specific to consumers’ needs, preferences and at times, even their whims and fancies. Hence, make your messages as useful and specific to your subscribers as can be. It will get your better results.

Here’s an example from a clothing brand.

3. Not tapping into FOMO

Now, you may be crafting clear messages informing your customers about your brand/products. But is your message stirring up any emotions? Sparking a sense of urgency or FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out)? Are you putting consumer psychology to work when you’re writing that SMS?

Urgency, time-sensitivity, and FOMO are tactics that help you subtly nudge your subscribers to make purchases. And because nobody likes to be left out, these tactics work like magic!

Here are some ways to craft your FOMO messages:

  • Tell consumers that something is in demand
  • Make it clear that an offer won’t last for long
  • Let your subscribers know that something is selling out fast
  • Incentivise them by offering discounts or free shipping

Here’s an example:

4. Not crafting clear messages

We understand – SMSes have word and character limits, and so, you might find it hard to convey everything you want to, to your subscribers.

But if your messages are not clear about what you want to convey, you’ll leave your subscribers confused or wondering what to do. That’s why clarity is important.

There are two aspects of clarity that you must nail in your SMS – a clear message and a clear purpose. How do you do that?

  • What is the one piece of information that the reader should take away from your SMS? Now write the text based on your answer
  • Avoid trying to tell everything in a single message
  • Next, what action should the reader take? (The call to action or purpose)
  • Don’t assume your reader knows what to do; tell them through a clear call to action
  • Keep your SMS text easy to understand with simple words and short sentences

5. Not including call-to-action

“Hi John, the black hat you were looking for is now available in our store at a 10% discount.”


“Hi John, your favorite black hat is back in stock. Avail 10% discount this week only! Buy it now from”

Which of these two messages, do you think, is more action-led? The second one, right?

The lesson: If you’re just sharing information with your subscribers, you’re not really asking them to take the next step. As a result, you might lose them.

The long and short of SMS marketing is that every message should have a clear call to action. Or else, your customers won’t know what is to be done. And your SMS will go to waste. Make sure you have a clear, to-the-point call to action that is clickable.

6. Not being conversational

If your text messages are one-sided and lack a conversational tone, you’re not using the actual potential of texting – which is in the sphere of customer engagement.

But obvious, you can’t respond to every subscriber individually. For that, you can use an app like TxtCart. It allows your subscribers to communicate with your brand/team of live agents. And through that, you can do so much more to make your SMS campaign a hit.

Do more through SMS simply by having conversations with your customers.

  • You can focus more on subscribers by allowing them to communicate with you
  • Tailor each message for the receiver, send them personalized marketing messages
  • Build a human-to-human relationship with your subscribers. It pays off in the long-term
  • Sell more on your site, faster, because you can help subscribers in their shopping

Here’s an example:

shopify sms marketing campaigns

7. Not timing your messages right

Three minutes – that’s the time it takes people to open SMSes. And so, immediacy is essential in SMS marketing. Imagine if you send an abandoned cart reminder a week after the shopper visited your store – it’s possible the subscriber may have purchased the product from another store, or has lost interest in it.

SMSes are known to generate impulse actions from consumers. Hence, the time when you send text messages is critical. Now, you can’t be sending thousands of SMSes manually. But you can automate all the messages and time them correctly.

For example, if you’re sending a thank you SMS to customers for their purchases, automate it, so that it gets sent out as soon as customers make purchases. Since the experience is fresh in the customers’ mind, they will appreciate it. Moreover, if you combine that message with another marketing promotion, they might even respond to it.

8. Not being consistent

Are you SMSing your subscribers only when there’s something to promote? Or are you also sending messages to nurture subscribers?

Here’s the thing – your subscribers have probably subscribed to other stores, too. And so, if you don’t stay connected with them, they may forget about your brand in the clutter of messages they most probably receive everyday.

The key: be consistent.

Send your SMS subscribers texts different kinds of texts:

  • Ask them for feedback.
  • Nudge them to sign up for your loyalty program.
  • Offer them seasonal or festive discounts from time to time.
  • Simply let them know you’re missing them.

These are some ways in which you can bring consistency in your SMS marketing and ensure your subscribers engage more deeply with your brand.

9. Not reflecting your brand in the message

When you send an SMS, how much does it reflect your brand? Do your subscribers relate the message with your brand? Or do they feel like it’s just another spam message?

We’re hinting at branding. Your SMS should reflect your brand.

And here are some factors that make a text message branded.

  • The tone and language should be consistent with your brand voice
  • The URL in your text message should be of your brand, not a third party
  • The message should have your brand name in it

Here’s an example:

10. Not looking at your numbers

Just like marketing campaigns on other channels – email, social media, etc. – you need to keep track of and measure the performance of your SMS marketing campaigns.

If you don’t care about the metrics – delivery rate, open rate, click through rate, interaction rate, conversion rate – you’d be losing opportunities to optimize your campaigns. You won’t be able to make them better. And you’ll keep making the same mistake over and over again, wondering why your SMS campaigns are not paying off.

11. Not cleaning your SMS list

Just like email lists, your SMS lists also need to be up-to-date. By cleaning out inactive numbers or those subscribers that are not interested anymore, you’ll be reaching out only to people who are truly interested.

There are many benefits to maintaining a hygienic SMS list:

  • Keep only valid and authentic numbers
  • Reduce costs by sending SMSes only to interested and authentic numbers
  • Increase delivery and open rates
  • Improve conversion rates
  • Avoid duplication and repetition of numbers

12. Not being GDPR and TCPA compliant

Privacy is one of the biggest concerns for consumers. For online stores to be able to run successful marketing campaigns, they need to comply with GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and TCPA (Telephone Consumer Protection Act) laws. These laws protect the privacy and personal data of individuals when they share their phone numbers for marketing and promotional purposes with brands.

As a Shopify store, you must follow best compliance practices.

Here are some tips:

  • Display the call to action clearly so that your audience knows what is the purpose of your test, and make the opt-in procedure as transparent as possible
  • Also, give your subscribers an option to opt out
  • Different countries have different laws and it’s best to stay up-to-date with these laws
  • You can make the compliance factor a breeze by using an app like TxtCart. It can help you with all compliance matters in one go!

How are you going to improve your SMS marketing campaign results?

A successful SMS marketing campaign that drives results is one that looks into the smallest of details so that subscribers gain more from those limited characters. And to make your SMS marketing campaigns easier, you can download the TxtCart app to help you.

Install the TxtCart app today!

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