Jonathan Denney

What’s New for 2022: SMS List Growth Tools, Ecommerce Elements & More

What’s up, marketers? Happy New Year! 🎉

As we’re breaking in 2022 and working on our strategies, it’s a good time to reflect upon what worked last year.

Last year, we were coming off the notorious 2020. That year caused nearly everyone to throw out their 20th century shopping habits and re-wired behavior to shop online first.

McKinsey estimates that in Q1 of 2020, we saw 10 years' worth of ecommerce penetration in just 90 days:

US ecommerce penetration

Many of us assumed things would return to normal, that everyone would go back to the good ol’ days of in-person retail shopping. They did not!

2021 reinforced that 2020 ecommerce habits are here to stay.

During BFCM, 2021’s peak online shopping season, ecommerce platforms like Shopify saw sales increase 23% compared to 2020—a year that had already reached new heights itself:

Worldwide BFCM Shopify sales

This breakneck growth of ecommerce quickly uncovered winners for marketers in the new landscape.

And we think the biggest winner of 2021 was (drum roll 🥁) SMS marketing.

In 2021, 70% of surveyed businesses were using SMS to communicate, with 77% saying they would continue using SMS after the pandemic:

SMS use survey

Although highly effective with open rates as high as 95%, SMS marketing seemed like an afterthought of email marketing for most of the last decade. Most marketers didn’t use it, and most of those that did would have SMS campaigns bolted onto their email marketing.

This decade, that’s already changed. We’re seeing brands starting to skip email altogether and collect just phone numbers for their marketing efforts.

This doesn’t mean email marketing is dying. It’s still alive and growing

What we’re seeing is SMS emerging as an effective addition to email for communicating with customers and driving revenue.

Anecdote: I’m 26 years old. Here’s how I engage with ecommerce marketing…

I use email primarily for work. While I check my email for work-related content, as a consumer, I don’t go out of my way to look for offers and promotions in my email inbox.

But, when my favorite iPhone case maker, Peel, sends me an offer through SMS, I open it:

Peel SMS example

Maybe it’s because my personal email client (Gmail) filters any messaging that looks ecommerce related into the “Promotions” inbox, suppressing push notifications to my phone. Or, maybe it’s because we’re still early enough in SMS marketing that consumers’ haven’t declared inbox bankruptcy in their messenger apps like I already have with my personal email.

SMS is also more expensive per recipient than email, it has easier opt-out functionality, and it has tighter regulations.

The result? Brands are forced into creating a better experience for consumers.

With this new reality in mind, ConvertFlow’s 2021 product shifted significantly towards helping brands personalize their SMS marketing.

Let’s dive in:

What's new in ConvertFlow?

  1. Collect SMS opt-ins, without email
  2. SMS marketing integrations
  3. SMS subscribe templates for the entire retail calendar
  4. New builder improvements for ecommerce offers
  5. Two-tap buttons for opening popups
  6. Increase AOV with cart progress offers + templates
  7. New quiz scoring features
  8. New quiz templates to make personalized product recommendations
  9. Intercom integration
  10. 100+ new templates
  11. Dashboard improvements

1. Collect SMS opt-ins, without email

You can now collect SMS-only opt-ins using ConvertFlow 🙌

SMS-only lead capture popup

This means if your marketing is skipping email altogether and going straight for SMS campaigns, ConvertFlow’s forms now work perfectly for you too.

Here's how this works:

  • Collecting a phone number (even without an email address) will create a contact in ConvertFlow
  • Phone number fields now have a country code dropdown and improved phone number validation
  • Collecting SMS marketing consent is easy with the SMS consent checkbox
  • We've added a new "Subscribe via SMS" confirmation type for buttons, forms, and surveys to pre-fill an SMS message to the phone number of your choice

2. SMS marketing integrations

ConvertFlow now has lots of deep integrations with SMS marketing platforms.

ConvertFlow + Attentive

Here's a full list of the integrations you can subscribe SMS contacts to with ConvertFlow:

3. Retail marketing calendar 2022

Each year, there are so many opportunities to run a time-sensitive promotion around themed holidays and events. So, we created a marketing calendar for 2022 with all the key dates you need to know about.

To save you time, we've also designed lots of holiday and seasonal sale ConvertFlow templates:

Holiday CTA templates

Here's a list of all the new campaign templates:

For more, check out our template library.

4. New builder improvements for ecommerce campaigns

After 2020’s builder overhaul, we’ve been able to expand ConvertFlow’s builder significantly.

You’ll now find that you can add:

Countdown timer in builder

We’ve also made improvements to design controls to help you create fully on-brand campaigns—without relying on developers for custom CSS.

5. Two-tap buttons for opening popups

When shopping on an ecommerce site, have you ever closed out a discount popup and then later realized you could've used that discount?

With the new "two-tap" floating button trigger, you now have the option to enable a two-tap button that can appear before your popup shows:

The kicker? Regardless of how you trigger your popup, you can choose to also have a two-tap floating button show after it gets closed.

This means people can open the popup back up again as and when they like—giving more conversion opportunities 🙌

6. Increase AOV with cart progress offers + templates

That new progress bar element mentioned earlier and the new shopping cart merge tags both integrate with Shopify’s cart. Meaning you can visualize to shoppers how much they need to add to cart to have a bonus applied (free shipping, free gift, etc.)—which helps increase your average order value.

Free shipping cart merge tag example

We paired this with lots of templates for offering free shipping or any other cart progress offer:

Take a look at some more designs here:

7. New quiz scoring features

ConvertFlow now makes it easy to assign scores to specific survey/quiz answers and custom field selections, using the new quiz and contact scoring features:

Quiz scoring example

Features include:

That means no more waiting on developers to do javascript-wizardry to use math in your funnels. ConvertFlow has now got all the scoring tools you need in a no-code interface.

8. New quiz templates to make personalized product recommendations

When you enter a retail store, you're usually greeted by helpful team members who ask you what you're looking for and guide you to the perfect products.

Shop quizzes play a similar role online by asking questions and providing personalized product recommendations based on the answers. It's like having a sales associate for your website—except it's working on autopilot 24/7 😎

Built with health & fitness stores in mind, ConvertFlow's new shop quiz campaign templates are 99% ready-to-launch, with landing page templates, popup templates, and sticky bar templates already done for you:

Health & fitness shop quiz templates

Check out the templates here:

9. ConvertFlow now integrates with Intercom

Use Intercom as your email service provider? If so, ConvertFlow just became much more powerful for you.

ConvertFlow + Intercom

With ConvertFlow's Intercom integration, you can:

  • Automatically sync form submissions to Intercom fields (guide)
  • Use ConvertFlow automations to segment contacts in Intercom (guide)
  • Personalize your website and CTA funnels for Intercom segments (guide)
  • Trigger the Intercom messenger from any button, form, or survey

10. 100+ total new ConvertFlow templates

You may have noticed we’ve made it a point to pair campaign templates with new feature releases.

In 2021, we released dozens of campaign templates, many of which are made up of multiple CTA templates that you can launch together, totaling more than 100+ ConvertFlow CTA templates added:

ConvertFlow template examples

Here’s a recap of all the new CTA templates added in 2021.

New cart abandonment / exit-intent campaign templates, each with overlay popup, hook popup, and sticky bar templates:

New SMS subscribe campaign templates, each with overlay popup, hook popup, sticky bar, and embedded CTA templates:

New quiz templates, each with landing page, overlay popup, hook popup, sticky bar, and embedded CTA templates:

Product bundle sales page templates:

11. Lots more improvements and additions

Lots more improvements and additions were made in 2021. Here's a quick overview:

What to expect for 2022

We’re shaking things up at ConvertFlow for this year, so expect some significant additions to ConvertFlow’s product 😉

If you have any feedback, suggestions, or requests, please reach us at team@convertflow.com so we can chat.

From the ConvertFlow team to you, let’s make 2022 your most successful year yet! Happy marketing!

About the author
Jonathan Denney
Co-Founder & CTO, ConvertFlow
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Co-Founder & CTO at ConvertFlow.