By Daniel Hunter

UK businesses send more texts to customers between 10am and 11am than any other time of the day, according to business SMS experts, Esendex.

Analysis of 9.6 million texts sent across Esendex’s network reveals that 11.2% of messages are sent between 10-11am, as part of a busy 9am-12pm slot that represents almost a third of all business SMS usage.

The data reveals that night owls are less likely to receive a text from a company while they are awake, with 2-3am the least busy time for business SMS communications. The average time for a business to send a text is 12.13pm.

Esendex believes that UK businesses prefer to text in the morning, to give customers more time to respond. This is backed up by analysis of two-way communications which shows that customers reply throughout the day, with peak times between 11am-12pm and 3-4pm.

Adam Bird, Esendex co-founder and CTO says, “There’s a theory about smartphone and tablet use being most prominent during the ‘coffee and couch’ times, during mid morning and evenings, but when it comes to SMS, outbound communications are definitely concentrated in the early part of the working day. This appears to maximise the chances of the message being read and acted upon.

“Despite the rise of social media, SMS still remains the most effective method for businesses to electronically communicate to customers and employees, due to its timeliness, reliability and ubiquity.

“As Juniper Research has identified, volume wise, we’re still at the tip of the iceberg for business SMS use. It’s already used for diverse applications as marketing, delivery confirmation for retailers or clubs and societies updating members. In the future we expect to see businesses increasing communications tactically at other times of the day, reflecting the diversity of applying SMS to business communications. Another trend will be the increase of two-way communication as companies use SMS more interactively.”

The international business SMS picture

Esendex looked at messaging patterns across 14.8 million messages sent by businesses in the UK, Ireland, France, Spain, Germany and Australia that regularly communicate via SMS.

Unlike in the UK, French business SMS volumes are more constant throughout the working day (8-9am and 5-6pm). It is the only country where businesses send a higher proportion of messages after 6pm, at 18%. This translated into a mean average time to send SMS of 1.58pm, compared to 12.13pm for the UK.

Australia, however, has the most concentrated period of sending messages in the early hours of the day, with 34% of all business text messages sent during just one hour (10.00-11.00am) each day and a mean average sending time of 11.20am. At the weekend Australian businesses are more likely to send messages in the afternoons, with 28.3% of messages sent between 4-5pm, far higher than other markets analysed, which had an average of 5.46% of messages on average during this hour.

German and Irish business SMS use largely mirrors the UK’s, with a mean average most popular time of 12.16pm and 11.52am respectively, while the average time for Spanish businesses to send SMSs is much later, at 12.57pm.

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