According to Statista, the application-to-person (A2P) market is poised to reach the heights of $45.93 billion this year. But that may just be the beginning. There’s no doubt that enterprises across different industries such as banking, healthcare, and travel are increasingly using A2P SMS to communicate with their customers. With that push, it’s no wonder that some reports suggest the A2P SMS market will grow to $64.24 billion by 2028.
A2P SMS is an ideal method for enterprises to connect with their customers. However, mobile network operators (MNO) face several challenges with SMS delivery and monetization.
These challenges could include – grey routing, unregulated networks, messages getting lost or delayed in the route, revenue leakage, an inability to terminate the SMS at the endpoint, and inability to block inappropriate content.
The operators have to take proactive measures to address these challenges and ensure timely delivery of A2P SMS.
How To Ensure A2P SMS Delivery?
- Reliable routing
An enterprise pays for the number of messages they send and not for the number of messages received by their customers. Hence, operators have to ensure that the SMS is delivered to the right person at the right time. Often, the operators have no control over the routes. Service providers may use grey routes to deliver the SMS. Grey routes are unauthorized networks. It only results in revenue loss for operators, but it also exposes the end-customer to spam messages and potential security risks. The only way to address this issue is by ensuring that the SMS travels through a reliable and authorized network. Operators can either re-route the SMS over tested routes or do proactive route testing to identify suspect routes and curtail them. Alternately, operators can also opt for direct routing. In direct routing, the operator can set up a direct connection with operators in other countries. This will help them send a large volume of messages to customers of that country on time and protect them from malware and other security issues.
- Monitoring and filtering content
In most countries, messages are subject to the oversight of the Government. The operators are expected to be stringent with compliance and filter or block suspicious messages. In other countries, operators are expected to monitor and block content to safeguard the customers from fake, fraudulent, and potentially dangerous content. Operators must have an active mechanism to blacklist and filter such content and ensure that customers are not bombarded with inappropriate or potentially illegal messages. Countries like India have already started taking initiatives to scrub and standardize SMS content and send it in a specific template to protect customers from spam. Monitoring and filtering content proactively will help operators safeguard the enterprise’s reputation and improve SMS delivery.
- SMS termination
Typically, SMS termination means that the A2P SMS has been successfully delivered to the customer. Mobile operators must know about every message terminating on their network. However, in most cases, operators lose revenue due to illegal A2P routes. Sometimes hackers get access to the network and flood it with irrelevant messages without paying appropriate fees. That’s why it’s important to have a direct termination agreement with operators across different countries. This will enable the local operators to terminate messages on their network and ensure effective SMS delivery. However, ensure that these operators are reliable and will deliver the SMS safely. Reliability and trust are the foundation of the relationship between the mobile operators to function smoothly.
- SMS firewall
SMS firewall protects the mobile networks from frauds and vulnerabilities. The messages are routed through the firewall to ensure that they are not fraudulent or suspicious in nature. The firewall automatically blocks the messages that are not compliant and protects customers from receiving them. It saves the operators’ reputation and overhead costs and also ensures safe SMS delivery to customers.
Some challenges, such as the recent TRAI regulation, may not be within the operator’s control. Over 600 million messages did not reach the customers because it required operators to register their entity, SMS header, and content template, leading to several technical glitches. However, solutions such as reliable routing, content scrubbing, firewall solutions, etc., are within the operator’s control. They can use these solutions to deliver A2P messages on time. It will help in building trust with enterprises. To ensure smooth delivery of A2P SMS, operators must partner with a telecom solution provider with the right expertise and experience in SMS delivery.
Globe Teleservices provides mobile network operators with powerful solutions for enabling high-quality A2P SMS delivery. We offer API connect for A2P messages, direct interconnection with more than 100+ carriers, and leading operators and direct SMS termination in 35+ countries globally. Operators can also leverage our high-quality direct routes to send A2P messages to end customers and prevent further revenue leakage.