How Much Does SMS Marketing Cost?

Find out what it may cost you to implement SMS marketing into your business and how to determine your SMS marketing ROI.

Business person sending an SMS text from their office desk
December 19, 2022
Chloe Mulliner
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Reading time about 6 min

As a small business owner, you’ve probably heard all the buzz around SMS marketing. And it’s no wonder; SMS texting is taking the marketing world by storm.

SMS texting has higher open rates, conversation rates, and engagement rates than other channels like email. Your customers are more likely to open—and respond—to your marketing texts, getting more eyes on your content and helping you attract (and maintain!) loyal customers.

While that might sound great for your small business, you’re probably wondering what it would cost to implement an SMS marketing strategy. Our guide has broken down SMS marketing costs to help you budget and calculate your marketing ROI.

What Are SMS Marketing Costs & ROI?

What are SMS marketing rates? And how do these relate to your marketing ROI? Check out the answers to your frequently asked questions regarding all things SMS marketing and ROI.


What Is the Cost of SMS marketing?

It depends.

Several factors influence your overall SMS marketing costs, but a quick estimate for average EZ Texting users would look like this: Sending 1 SMS message a week to 1,000 contacts over 4 weeks (4,000 total messages) would cost $168 in our Essentials pricing tier — and you would have another 1,000 messages left over.

But not all SMS platforms offer the same features, service, or dependability, so not all services are priced the same. To determine the cost of SMS marketing, first, let’s look at what it costs to send an SMS text. It costs between $0.01 to $0.05 per SMS text message, with MMS texts costing slightly more because they can include up to 1600 characters along with data like emojis, images, and brief video. That said, it could cost more to send texts internationally. Depending on your carrier and plan, they may charge anywhere from $0.25 to $0.50 per international SMS message.

However, instead of charging you per text, many providers will give you a certain number of message credits per plan with the option of purchasing additional credits each month. For example, with EZ Texting, every plan starts with a flat rate of 200 credits—one SMS text costs one credit, while each MMS text costs three credits.

Next, you’ll want to consider the cost per custom Keyword. A Keyword is what your customers text your number to opt-in and receive communication from you. For instance, you might encourage your customers to text SUNSHINE20 to receive 20% off your summer collection. It will depend on your SMS plan, but you may receive a set number of Keywords each month or have the option of purchasing additional ones a la carte. EZ Texting’s base plan starts with one customizable Keyword each month, with the next plan offering up to three unique Keywords per month.

There’s more to SMS pricing than just texts and Keywords, though. There are countless features involved with SMS marketing platforms, so many providers offer tiered pricing plans with set monthly fees. Typically, they start with a basic plan with limited features and move to more robust plans with more advanced options like API access and list growth tools.

To give you a better look at what an SMS marketing plan might cost you, check out EZ Texting’s pricing tiers.

Illustration of money, laptop, pricing

When you choose one of EZ Texting’s straightforward monthly plans, it’s easy to determine SMS marketing rates and factor them into your budget.

On top of these tiered plans, you can also purchase more message credits, which let you exceed the base 200 monthly message credits provided with each plan, giving you more flexibility and freedom with your marketing campaigns. Furthermore, you can add additional features to your plan, such as more users and multiple textable numbers.

quotation mark

We were looking for a cost effective way to set up texting campaigns. After looking at many we chose EZ Texting and are glad we did. The price was great. The service worked flawlessly.

— Darvie F, Pastor

What is ROI?

With a better understanding of some of the costs associated with running an SMS marketing campaign, let’s calculate your ROI.

ROI is a word that often gets thrown around in the business sphere, but what exactly does it mean? ROI stands for Return of Investment, which is a metric used to determine the profitability of an investment or strategy. It’s a ratio that looks at how much you paid to employ the investment versus how much you earned from it.

To calculate ROI, you divide your net profit by the investment cost and multiply it by 100 to get a percentage.

ROI = (Net Profit / Cost of Investment) x 100


Image of ROI equation



How Do You Calculate Your SMS Marketing ROI?

Now, what about your marketing ROI? It’s the same deal. Your marketing ROI refers to the cost of your marketing campaigns compared to the profits you earned from running them.

Your marketing ROI could be as simple as determining profits from your sole SMS marketing campaign. So, let’s go back to that summer sale scenario: You texted a promo giving your customers 20% off their purchase. In this case, your SMS marketing ROI would determine how much you spent on the SMS campaign vs. how much you earned from it.

Let’s say you ran a four-month marketing campaign on a basic SMS marketing plan that costs you $200 a month. For four months, that investment cost you $800, and you earned $200 in profits directly related to that 20% promo.


ROI for your SMS marketing campaign: ($200) / ($800) x 100


Therefore, your SMS marketing ROI for that one campaign is 25%.

Now, your marketing ROI could also incorporate multiple marketing strategies involved in the same campaign. In addition to your SMS marketing efforts, maybe you ran social media ads and sent out email marketing to further promote your 20% off sale. To arrive at your marketing ROI, add everything you spent to oversee that marketing campaign and compare it to your profit from those specific efforts.

Perhaps for those four months, in addition to the $800 you spent on SMS texts, you spent $600 on social ads and $420 to cover email marketing.


Image ROI for your multi-strategy marketing campaign: ($200) / ($800 + $600 + $420) x 100


When you add up all your marketing costs and divide by your $200 profit, your ROI for this diverse marketing campaign is nearly 11%.

So, what is a good ROI for your marketing efforts? The truth is there is no good or bad ROI percentage; it’s just a matter of finding the sweet spot for your business. The more you experiment with different marketing strategies and track your ROI, the easier it will be to see what performs the best and gets you closest to your ROI goals.

Understanding how much you need to budget for an SMS platform and how the money you spend relates to your marketing ROI can help you track your income and determine what strategies generate the highest profits for your business. For more tricks of the trade, check out our guide on SMS marketing tips.

Discover How EZ Texting Can Help Your Business

It’s time to find out how SMS marketing can benefit your business. When you implement an SMS marketing strategy with EZ Texting, your business can experience higher open rates, improved conversions, and increased customer engagement. Contact us today to learn more about SMS marketing and how it can give your business a boost.

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