WhatsApp Vs SMS Marketing
In: Digital Marketing

In today’s time, brands are trying to be efficient and modern by following the recent trends. They are capturing space in all those platforms where they can get connected with tier customers. Their main focus is on how to make themselves the best and superior in front of the customers so that customer engagement and sales can be increased.

Earlier, SMS marketing was widely used by brands and is still being used by most of them to communicate with their audience and provide them with material information about their products and offers.

With an open rate of 90%, SMS marketing is still used by the majority of businesses since they still get a good amount of reverts and attention from their customers.

What About WhatsApp Marketing?

As per recent stats, WhatsApp marketing has an open rate of 98%. People find it easy and appealing, hence they easily open the messages and react to them accordingly. Yes, we understand that you must be now very confused as to which form of marketing is better and which one to choose.

Let this article help you solve your doubts

What is SMS Marketing?

Short message service (SMS) marketing is a form of marketing that involves sending promotional messages to customers via text messages.  In other words, SMS marketing is the same thing as text marketing It is permission-based marketing where businesses can only send messages to those who have given consent to receive them. This method allows businesses to keep you connected by sharing news about exclusive deals, new products, or even helpful tips, all in real-time.

What is WhatsApp Marketing?

WhatsApp Business marketing is a platform for businesses to connect and communicate with customers regarding promotions, product information, and customer services. From WhatsApp business,  brands can solve queries of customers, receive feedback, and have one-on-one conversations. Through WhatsApp business, you can send broadcast messages to a large audience in one go.

Since WhatsApp messaging is quick, easy, and accessible, it can be assumed that your messages are being read by your targeted audience, and you can receive a significant amount of conversions. Not only messages but, you can use other features of WhatsApp business to engage with your customers such as audio, video, status, and images.

The main reason why WhatsApp has a 99% open rate is that it has a high number of users. More than 2 billion people are using WhatsApp to communicate with others. Hence, when they find any message in their WhatsApp chat they tend to open it and read it.

WhatsApp Marketing Vs SMS Marketing

Now let’s understand how WhatsApp Marketing is different from SMS Marketing.

FeatureWhatsApp MarketingSMS Marketing
AccessibilityRequires internet connection and mobile phone having WhatsAppThe user should have a mobile phone since it works on any mobile network
Content FormatSupports rich media like images, videos, voice notes, documents, and messagesPlain text only with a character limit of 160 characters.
EngagementTwo-way communication allows for replies, questions, and real-time chat.On-one communication; limited interaction
CostUsually cheaper, depending upon scale.Can be expensive depending upon the volume of messages and target audience.
PermissionRequires permission by the user to receive messages from businesses.No opt-in required
Open rate98%90%
End-to-end encryptionYesNo

Advantages and Disadvantages

You must now be a little clear about the difference between WhatsApp marketing and SMS marketing.

But how about understanding about their advantages and disadvantages? Below are some of them:

WhatsApp Marketing


  1. Enhanced engagement: WhatsApp allows for two-way communication, including images, voice notes, videos, and documents. Giving your message a more personal and engaging touch.
  2. Stronger Relationship: Because of two-way communication, answering questions, and providing support;  businesses can build stronger relationships with customers.
  3. Cost-effective: WhatsApp uses internet data instead of cellular charges, making it a cost-effective way of advertising.


  1. Limited reach: WhatsApp marketing is effective for those who are using WhatsApp, people not using WhatsApp can only be reached through SMS.
  2. Permission required: Users need to save your business name and contact to keep on getting messages, if not done you won’t be able to interact with them.
  3. Potential for Spam Perception: Keep on sending unwanted messages can affect your reputation, hence first get permission from the customer and then start the interaction otherwise you can get the tag of a spammer.

SMS Marketing


  1. Universal reach: Today every single person has a phone and contact, making it easy for businesses to reach every single customer through SMS marketing.
  2. High Open rates: Since SMS marketing are old form of marketing and still in trend, it has a significant open rate of approximately 90%.
  3. Simple and Immediate: SMS is ideal for sending quick updates, reminders, and alerts.


  1. Limited Content: You cannot exceed 160 characters limit while writing messages, hence limiting your information.
  2. Low engagement: Compared to WhatsApp SMS has a lower engagement rate.
  3. Can be Impersonal: The one-way communication style can feel impersonal, making it difficult to build relationships.

These were some of the advantages and disadvantages of both WhatsApp and SMS marketing. Now you must have an understanding of which one to choose and which mode of marketing will suit your business.

To Sum Up

SMS marketing is an old and traditional form of communicating with customers, whereas WhatsApp marketing having rich media acts as a new form of communication. Although the target of both marketing forms is the same that is communicating with customers. Identify which is best for your business and your customer behavior, and then start working on it.

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