How one tweak can help reduce SMS opt-outs and keep your subscribers

How one tweak can help reduce SMS opt-outs and keep your subscribers

It’s normal to get a few opt-outs after every SMS campaign. But what if one simple change reduced your opt-out rate and helped keep more of your hard-earned contacts?

Our online SMS service has two opt-out functions: standard and URL. Switching from one to the other may help you reduce your unsubscribe rates.

Let’s have a look at both of them.

Standard opt-out

Every online SMS service has this feature. It’s the most common. Typical text messages will have a phrase at the bottom of each message that looks like this: “Opt out reply STOP”.

SMS Example:

If the recipient replies with “STOP”, then we add them to your global opt out list, and your future campaigns will not reach them.

URL opt-out

As it sounds, recipients opt out by tapping on a unique unsubscribe link. This takes them to a landing page, and they can confirm their opt-out or send you a response.

SMS Example:

If they tap the URL (UnsubRep.ly/~ABCDE) at the bottom of the message, then they’ll see something like this:

Note: If you want to use URL opt-outs with Burst, you need to use an alphanumeric Sender ID, like your business name, and not your virtual number. Here’s a tutorial in case you want to learn more.

SMS Opt-Out Benchmarks

We send millions of messages per month, and after taking a closer look at all the stats, we discovered that URL opt-outs perform better than standard opt-outs. For all the industries that we dove into, the standard opt-out only performed better in one.

Standard Opt-outs URL Opt-outs
Global Average 2.69% 1.73%
Education 0.85% 0.81%
Events & Entertainment 1.90% 1.46%
Financial 1.13% 2.33%
Health & Fitness 4.60% 1.78%
Retail 2.62% 1.53%
Restaurants 3.70% 1.60%
Recruitment 1.42% n/a
Tourism 1.06% 0.97%

Elements of control:

To ensure that we only counted quality SMS campaigns, we only considered campaigns that sent over 500 SMS and ones that were not first-time campaigns.

Final Thoughts

The exact science behind why URL opt-outs perform better is unknown. And this isn’t the end all be all solution to help keep more of your subscribers. One of the best ways to keep your subscribers is by creating relevant and timely content that provides value. But feel free to give this a try and let us know how it works for you!

Want more SMS or mobile statistics like this? Indulge in our 2018-19 State of SMS. Click the button below to download. It’s free.