SMS business messaging traffic will reach 3.5 trillion messages in 2020; rising from 3.2 trillion in 2019, according to a new study from Juniper Research.

This represents a growth of 7 per cent, despite the economic impacts of COVID-19. SMS business messaging enables brands and enterprises to leverage SMS for use cases including notifications and authentication messages.

Despite the collapse of the tourism and aviation industries, the new research, Mobile Messaging: Operator Strategies & Vendor Opportunities 2020-2024, predicts that the pandemic will directly generate increased demand in sectors including healthcare and government agencies, during 2020.

It predicts that business messaging traffic attributable to healthcare services will grow 10 per cent this year, as healthcare providers leverage the low cost and wide reach of SMS for notifications amid the COVID-19 crisis.

The travel sector uses business messaging for the delivery of booking confirmations and travel service updates; however, the COVID-19 pandemic has greatly reduced this source of demand for business messaging services.

In addition, the research predicts that the anticipated economic recession arising from COVID-19 will cause long-term decreased demand from this sector, rather than this being a temporary disruption.

As such, messaging vendors must broaden the breadth of their subscriber base in order to mitigate the impact of the worst affected sectors.

The research anticipates that the ubiquitous nature of SMS amongst citizens and its low cost per message will continue to generate demand in these uncertain times.

As the pandemic slows, however, Juniper Research urges mobile messaging service providers to invest in industries that are highly resilient to the impact of COVID-19 in order to continue growth.

The research highlights banking and online retail sectors as industries that are expected to remain robust against the long-term effects of COVID-19. These sectors are anticipated to account for over 25 per cent of all business messaging traffic in 2020.

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