20 Sep SMS Compliance in Australia: A Guide to Avoiding Spam
Australia, like many other countries, has strict regulations in place to combat spam through SMS messages. To ensure your SMS marketing campaigns are effective and compliant with Australian laws, it’s crucial to understand and follow SMS compliance guidelines. In this blog, we’ll delve into the key aspects of SMS compliance in Australia and provide insights into best practices to keep your messages from being considered spam.
1. Obtain Express Consent
The foundation of SMS compliance in Australia is obtaining express consent from recipients before sending them marketing messages. Express consent means that individuals must provide clear and unambiguous consent to receive SMS communications from your business. Consent can be obtained through:
- Clear and specific opt-in forms on your website or in physical stores.
- Consent checkboxes that are not pre-checked, to ensure individuals actively choose to subscribe.
- Confirmation messages to inform customers of their subscription and provide an easy opt-out option.
2. Include Clear Opt-Out Instructions
Respecting recipients’ preferences is crucial. Each marketing or promotional message you send must include clear and simple opt-out instructions. A common practice is to include “Reply STOP to unsubscribe” if you are using a Virtual Number or add an opt-out link to a form if you are sending from a verified alpha sender ID.
3. Identify Your Business
To maintain compliance and build trust, ensure that recipients can easily identify your business as the sender of the SMS. Use a verified, recognisable sender ID, such as your business name or purchase a Virtual Number to consistently send messages from – recipients can save the number to their handset.
4. Limit Sending Frequency
Avoid overwhelming your subscribers with a high volume of SMS messages. Setting a reasonable sending frequency and sticking to it is essential to keeping customers engaged, preventing them from feeling harassed and ultimately opting out.
5. Respect Sending Time
Consider the time zone of your subscribers when sending SMS messages. Avoid sending messages during unsociable hours, such as late at night or early in the morning, to prevent irritation and complaints.
6. Adhere to Australian Regulations
Familiarise yourself with Australian regulations governing SMS marketing, including the Spam Act 2003. Key provisions of the act include:
- Gaining consent before sending commercial electronic messages.
- Providing a functional and straightforward opt-out mechanism.
- Including accurate sender identification information.
- Ensuring your contact details are provided and valid.
7. Provide Value
Every SMS you send should offer some value to your recipients. Whether it’s exclusive offers, promotions, important updates, or personalised content, make sure your messages provide something meaningful to the recipient. Relevant and valuable content is less likely to be ignored or deleted.
8. Monitor and Manage Complaints
Establish a process for handling recipient complaints and inquiries promptly. Responding quickly to opt-out requests and complaints is vital, and ensure that individuals who opt out are removed from your SMS list immediately. For example, your touchSMS sending portal will automatically block any sending to customers that have opted out.
SMS marketing can be a highly effective tool for engaging with customers. However, it’s essential to prioritise SMS compliance to maintain a positive brand image and comply with legal requirements. By obtaining express consent, providing clear opt-out instructions, identifying your business, adhering to Australian regulations, and delivering valuable content, you can ensure that your SMS messages are well-received and avoid being labelled as spam. In the end, SMS compliance is a valuable investment that benefits both your business and your customers