Mobile everything has been one of the fastest growing trends this decade. People are on their phones for a slough of reasons at all hours of the day and night. We’ve got elaborations on mobile trends and usage all over our site, and below are all the texting statistics you could ever want! Enjoy.
If you just want to know the number of texts people send every day, scroll down. Your numbers are highlighted in red. There’s charts, too! If you want details and explanations, keep reading.
Everyone wants to know how many texts are sent and received every day, and who’s doing all this messaging. The trouble is that this specific research is only conducted every several years. Trends suggest the numbers keep rising, but that’s difficult to confirm in between reports.
How many texts do people send every day? It’s not the easiest question to answer, but here’s everything we know.
Note that app-to-app messaging, such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, is not included in this. (Those two combine for over 60 billion messages every day, in case you were curious.)
Global vs. U.S.
In June of 2014, 561 billion text messages were sent worldwide. That’s the most recent number we’ve got. Obviously that’s a rounded figure, but it brings us to roughly 18.7 billion texts sent every day around the world. (Tweet this!)
By the end of 2011, the United States was sending out 6 billion texts every day, or about 180 billion a month. At that same time – end of year 2011 – there were about 395 billion monthly texts being sent worldwide.
In other words, the U.S. was responsible for about 45% of the world’s texts. Not bad for 4% of the world’s population.
Between the end of 2011 and June 2014, global text usage grew from ~395 billion to 561 billion messages per month. That’s a growth of approximately 140%.
If – strong if – U.S. text usage grew by that same figure, then Americans sent 255 billion texts in June of 2014.
With very rough figures, we’ll extrapolate that the most recent data we have shows 8.5 billion texts sent every day in these here United States of America.
We do know that 81% of the American population are texters – they text at least on a monthly basis. For round figures, the U.S. has a population of 320 million. 81% of our population equals roughly 259 million people who text.
So. If 259 million people are sending out 8.5 billion texts a day, what does that account to? That’s roughly 32-33 messages per day, per person.
From here, we can keep breaking down the numbers by who owns what device and how old they are, but what’s the point? People under 18 aren’t included in a lot of the data, and those over 65 years old hardly do any texting. But we’ll get to that.
This is arguably the best data available, but we can’t say with complete assurance that it’s 100% accurate for today. Take it with a grain of salt.
By Age Group
The best research we have here is from Pew Research Center in 2011. They conducted another very thorough study towards the end of 2014 (released in April, 2015), but for some reason the new one didn’t include the number of text messages sent.
They did, however, show that text/SMS is the single most used feature on a smartphone, with 97% of all smartphone users having texted within the last week.
Coming in second was audio/video calls with a 92% usage rate, and the internet with an 89% usage rate. Think about that.
On mobile devices (which take up the majority of web traffic), people text more than they use the internet. That’s incredible.
Thankfully, in 2013, Experian Marketing Services released this report, breaking down text usage by demographic. Again, it’s been a few years since their report, which might mean the numbers are dated, but it’s the best public information we’ve got.
Per their report, those between 18-24 years old sent and received an average of 3,853 texts messages per month. In a 30-day month, that’s just over 128 messages per day.
As of 2013, American adults between 18-24 sent and received an average of just over 128 text messages per day.
The next group is adults 25-34 years old, which, admittedly, is a large age group to include. There’s 3 completely different life stages in this, which leads us to believe that the numbers would be skewed between those 25-29 and those 30-34. But I digress.
People in this age range averaged 2,240 sent and received texts per month. Based on a 30-day month, that’s just under 75 messages per day.
As of 2013, American adults between 25-34 sent and received an average of just under 75 text messages per day.
Those 35-44 years old sent and received an average of 1,557 text messages per month, which comes out to 52 text messages per day.
Adults 45-54 years old sent and received 998 text messages per month, or about 33 messages a day.
The 55+ group averaged 491 messages per month, translating into 16 text messages per day.
Let’s group some of these together for more a “comprehensive” and easy to remember figure (or just a fun fact to toss around). If we generalize these age groups American adults under 45 years old send and receive an average of 2,550 messages a month, or about 85 text messages per day. (Tweet this!)
Depending on which study you look at over the last few years, the average person spends roughly 8 – 10 hours engaged in media everyday. Impressive, huh? But is it really all that surprising? “Media” refers to TV, Netflix, radio, movies, podcasts, YouTube, and just about any app on your phone. When you realize how broad of a category “media” is, spending 10 hours a day on it really isn’t all that much. Think about it.
When you wake up in the morning, you check your notifications, emails, etc. You might read a book. Perhaps you turn on the TV for a morning show. You probably read a few articles or watch a few videos you see shared on Facebook, Medium, LinkedIn, Twitter, or whatever your go-to source is. You listen to radio or podcasts on your way to work (somebody’s got to support Mike & Mike). You might even stream some of this stuff while you’re at the office!
At some point you’ll get distracted on Facebook or LinkedIn. Heck, your job might be to be engaged in media all day! You listen to the radio or something on the way home from work. Maybe you watch an hour or two of some show, and recoup by scrolling through your mobile device. When you think about it, 10 hours a day seems a bit low.
Media is a staple of how we get through our days, stay informed, find entertainment, and keep up with contacts. Media is not evil, we’re not all being brainwashed. It’s simply a (rather large) facet of life, culture, and progress.
Someone is inevitably going to look at this – at the fact that we spend up to 10 hours a day (maybe more) invested in media – as outrageous, deplorable, even as a sure sign that the end is near! Think whatever you want, that’s not the case. Think about all the gaps that would be created in your day and in your life if you took out media. You could get by and be perfectly content, I’m sure. But what you would miss out on – news, relationships, opportunities, fulfillment, progress, self-actualization – would far outweigh any benefit you would gain from disconnecting.
Technology is the driving force behind our media consumption. Technology progressively makes the things we want to do easier to do. At the heart of that innovation is the desire to build, to grow, to improve, and to develop. Sure, anything can be used to harmful effects. But 10 hours a day of media is not killing anybody. When used properly, media enables us to better ourselves and that which surrounds us. Don’t look at this research in shock at what we do. Look at it as part of how we grow in ourselves, in business, and with others.
People are texting for business all the time! They text to schedule a meeting, to check in with someone, to send a quick reminder, to wish a client a happy birthday, to talk business ideas, even to shore up and grow new business.
We text. It's just what we do. Texting is a natural extension of our own voice, and integrates seamlessly with our day-to-day lives. It's really interesting to look around and see how many people are using their mobile devices, what exactly they're using them for, and how they're communicating with others through them. While individuals embrace these new technologies and use them to benefit their own day-to-day lives, it's a rare occurrence when a business as an entire unit takes advantage of these incredible technologies.
If you're a gym, it's really easy and makes a lot of sense to incorporate one or several fitness apps into what you and your personal trainers do everyday. It completes the customer experience, and probably makes operations more efficient.
If you're an accounting firm, something like Drop Box makes perfect sense, because you and your clients can quickly and easily share important documents with each other, securely, from anywhere.
If you're a school, ebooks are a great tool because there's so many kids who don't have access to (or funds to purchase) books, and ebooks can help remedy that situation.
What does your business use technology for? What technologies do you wish you were using?
Technology is a beautiful thing! Sure, it comes with additional responsibilities, but the benefits when used appropriately are astronomical!
Texting is a technology that we all use. It's a staple of how we communicate. Individuals text for countless reasons every single day. And over 80% of professionals include texting for business in their tool belts to boost their careers. So why is it that only a handful of businesses have started having text conversations as a business unit?
Most businesses are constantly trying to catch up with where they need to be. That's just the way it is. Leaders see a few people do things one way, and eventually they start to do the same with their respective brands.
Texting - for full conversations, not just marketing - hasn't caught up with the mainstream of business communication, but the innovative leaders out there have begun to integrate texting into their professional, business communication as an organizational unit - complete with a clickable text number on their website.
They're using these business text numbers to have full conversations about anything from scheduling appointments to creating leads to closing sales to general communications to friendly reminders - really for every reason you as an individual might text someone. But they're doing it as a unit. They're doing it in a way that's manageable as a whole organization, in a way where they can have five or ten people (or everyone) from the same business texting for that business, and be able to keep tabs on who said what to whom and when.
We use mobile technologies every single day for hundreds of reasons, from leisure to education to communication. Most people text everyday to boost their business. And several businesses as entire units have started to incorporate texting for full conversations into their strategies - with impressive results, I might add. When will you make the jump?
The stat in this picture is inexcusable, primarily because it's completely avoidable. Every phone call is a chance to make a sale, to grab a referral, to make an upsale, and to create an advocate for your organization.
Between how many calls go unanswered, how many are placed on hold (86%), how many callers hang up after being placed on hold (32% immediately; 90% within 5 minutes), and how much your competitors gain from all this, you are losing about a quarter of your business potential - simply because you can't handle the volume of calls you get everyday.
There's several easy solutions to this:
Hire More People
If you can't answer all the calls that come in (and do so in a timely manner), it's probably not going to hurt you to hire another person (or several) to handle those calls. Hiring another employee means higher overhead costs for your business. But if you brought in 25% more revenue than what you're currently bringing in, would that cover your extra expenditure? I can't answer that question for everyone, because it varies so much between each business, but my guess would be that it would. Plus, if you're getting someone's business, it means your competitors aren't.
Make Them Email You
Can't handle enough calls? Have people email you! That's pretty simple, right? After all, you already have several, if not dozens or hundreds, of email addresses set up for your organization. But if you do choose to encourage more people to email you instead of call, you have to make sure you can answer every single one of those emails quickly. Why do people ever choose to call anyone? Because they want something, and they want it right then. If you take the average 6+ hours to respond to someone's email, that's too long. It won't decrease your call volume. It might even raise it. Also, only 20% of emails are ever read, so you' really need to make sure your staff is on point with responding to every single email appropriately.
Live chat isn't great for many things because there's zero mobility available with this option. But it's great as a supplement or replacement to phone calls because of its immediacy. People call your organization because they want something right at that moment, and email (typically the only other option) takes way too long. If you give people another instant gratification offer, like live chat, you'll be able to reduce the number of calls you get, handle more conversations simultaneously, and bring in more business that you would have otherwise lost from not being able to answer a phone call.
Let Them Text You
This is a great way to stand out. It provides everything your average consumer needs (that's why it's the most used form of communication in the world). People call because they want something instant. Well, SMS or text messaging is simply instant messaging on-the-go. Anyone with a cell phone can text you. People don't want to call you, they just want something right then. If you give them the opportunity to text you, they will. They know email takes too long, they don't want to wait on hold, and if they're stuck on live chat it means they can't go anywhere else. Plus, an employee can easily handle multiple text conversations simultaneously, which you can't do on a phone call. And someone can handle about 10X as many conversations in the same amount of time simply because texting is so much quicker.
People often do not want to have to call you. Mostly, they do this because it's easier than waiting hours or days for you to email them back. Consumers want something immediately. By not being able to handle all the calls you get, you're inevitably losing business opportunities. And since you're losing opportunities, that means your competitors are gaining opportunities. To remedy this, and earn a significantly larger amount of revenue, you either need to hire more personnel to handle the abundance of communications, or provide alternation options for those trying to contact you, such as live chat or text messaging.
61% of businesses wish they could send and receive texts from a business number.
It's intriguing that the majority of businesses seem to understand the importance and benefits of texting in the professional world, but still haven't really done anything about it.
It's such a simple need with such a simple solution.
Today's workforce is composed primarily of Millennials (adults between 20 and 40 years old, roughly). These are the ones for whom texting is a natural form of communication, and these are the same people that think texting would be a great option for both them and their clientele, if only they could do it from something other than their personal cell.
Truthfully, if you haven't already started texting, and you're not actively looking for a way to professionally text with consumers/customers/clients/etc., you're behind the times.
People would rather text you than have to call someone else, and if your direct competitors aren't already texting professionally, it's something that could give you a serious edge over them.
Adding texting as a third line of communication (to phone calls and emails) will open up a whole new realm for positive customer experiences, without creating more hassle around the office. You'll be able to generate more leads, build better relationships with your clientele, and generally streamline your operations.
Is everybody going to immediately stop doing everything else to start texting you? No. But the majority of people would rather text you than call somebody else for a simple question or need. And most people don't want to fill out another contact form, especially if they're on a mobile device (it's more difficult than it's worth).
In fact, since texting is so much simpler than calling or emailing (and removes the small talk), you'll actually be able to handle more communications in less time.
Most people want to text professionally because they understand the importance of being able to do things on your own time, of being virtually guaranteed to reach people every time, of saving time and money spent talking on the phone, of speeding up the sales cycle, and two dozen other advantages of texting as a business.
The best part? You can start doing this right now.
People want to text. Your customers want to text.
If you don't believe that, look around. The average cell phone owner under 50 sends and receives over 85 texts every single day!
People texting with people is a staple of everyday communication. It's just what we do. Want to catch up with family? Text. Need a report finished? Text. Confirming a meeting? Text. Seeing if so-and-so wants to do dinner? Text.
The go-to form of communication for the majority of the world's population is text messaging.
That's for person-to-person. Where is this in business communication? A lot of businesses use automated marketing texts, but where's the conversation with a real person through text? That's how we communicate. Businesses should as well.
Real-time, two-way text messaging is the largest void in business communication.
The worst part about it is that this gaping hole is leaving millions of people dissatisfied with service options and with companies as a whole.
89% of consumers want another customer service option. 79% are unhappy with what's currently provided to them. And (at least) 78% of people who text wish they could have a text conversation with a business.
As a business, you know that you have to give customers what they want, or they're not going to work with/buy from you. What most customers want these days is an easier way to do things. So give them an easier way to communicate with you.
Most website traffic comes from mobile devices. When someone's on your website, which they probably found on their smart phone, how easy would it be if they could just click a button that opened a text addressed to your business? Very easy.
There's two main benefits of this.
One - people prefer texting, generally, because they can do it as much as they want on their own time, without having to worry about it interrupting their day.
Two - Customers absolutely detest waiting on hold, they don't like live chat options because they have to stay in one place to use them, and it takes too long for people to read and respond to emails to act as a real-time conversation.
But people love the flexibility of texting. They can carry on short or lengthy conversations whenever they want throughout the day.
Billions of conversations are had through text every single day. The overwhelming majority of consumers are currently unhappy with customer service options. They want to text with your business.
You want to make more money, right? You want to be the best rep, employee, manager, location, business, entrepreneur, etc., and you want to grow.
A significant part of this is maximizing customer potential, or how much each customer is willing to give you. But how do you do this?
Think about your relationships with friends and family.
You talk regularly, if not all the time. You go out together. You help them move. You buy gifts for each other. And you're generally willing to do a lot more for these people than for some random stranger.
You're willing to give more to these people because you have better relationships with them. This same phenomenon occurs between consumers and businesses.
Obviously you can't be best friends with every single one of your customers. And you don't really need to be. What you do need is to stand out from your competition. You need to build a better relationship with customers and potential customers than the other guys would.
Nurtured leads (potential customers you or your brand have built relationships with) will make an average of 47% larger purchases than leads who haven't been nurtured.
You like using Amazon because it's quick, and because you don't have to leave your seat to get what you want. You could go pick up the exact same thing from Walmart or Barnes&Noble or Lowe's and not have to wait or pay for shipping. But if you're like most people, you go back to Amazon again and again and again. Why? Because they're constantly nurturing you.
Every time you click on an item, you'll notice that Amazon recommends other, similar items. They see you've chosen one thing with x, y, and z characteristics, so they refer you to something else they think might help you during your hunt for the perfect item. After you purchase, you get emails and follow-ups recommending other items that should appeal to you based on your purchase(s). They're constantly there with you, and are politely working to create more and larger purchases from you.
Because of this nurturing, you spend a lot more on Amazon goods, and a lot less at other places.
Most businesses, particularly small businesses, rely on regular and direct communication to build relationships with (potential) customers - either through the sales team, seeing people around town, regular newsletters, or some other form of correspondence- to nurture them and try to get larger purchases out of them.
If you're a business that needs regular communication with individuals, which you probably are, it will help your customer service and your bottom line to text with these individuals.
Let's say a lead comes in from an email, online form, text, signup sheet, etc. You can easily follow up with that lead by sending them a text to give them the information they need, to check in down the road, to let them know you're always easily reachable should they need anything else or have questions, and to generally create an open line of communication.
You text with your friends and family all the time. And you're much more likely to spend more on them because you're constantly building those relationships. It's not an if-text-then-buy, causal relationship. But texting goes hand-in-hand with establishing and building relationships. It's easy, it's personal, it's natural.
By doing something as powerfully simple as texting with your (potential) customers, you're furthering relationships and your brand. You're nurturing leads. You're providing better service, and you're standing out from your competition.
By texting with your leads, you'll be able to command more of their dollars, and ensure your business is their go-to choice anytime you could possibly be an option.
"Digital Natives" are typically recognized as Millennials and today's teenagers who've all grown up using cell phones and the internet. But they're not the only ones who've integrated these technologies into their daily lives.
According to a recent (and rather thorough) Gallup poll, "sending and receiving text messages is the most prevalent form of communication for American adults under 50."
That's astounding! Especially when you think about how texting and mobile trends are perceived. They're often thought of as applying to hip, under-35 crowd who were "young enough" to appreciate new technologies as they came out.
But mobile usage is so much larger than that. Texting is the number one form of communication, and yet businesses and organizations across the board are neglecting to harness it in a professional and manageable way.
Maybe you think, "Well, a lot of businesses work with older demographics, so it doesn't really apply there." Au contraire mon frere!
Texting's the most common way for anyone under 50 to communicate, and well over half of those older than 50 text as well!
Texting is native to Millennials, but they're not the only ones who do it, nor the only ones to do it often.
Businesses and the people who work for them: why are you not using the world's #1 preferred form of communication to actually hold conversations, to build relationships with people and grow your organization?
Do you want to gain more leads? Do you want to service customers better? Would you like to leave people happier, and steal consumers away from your competition? Of course you would. That's what business is all about!
So why not use a simple tool that everyone wants to use, but that businesses have not made a staple? Stand out! Give the people what they want. Meet consumers where they are, and join the conversation. Text.
Our cell phones aren’t just a part of our daily lives. They’re extensions of our selves, pieces of our identities, and necessary tools for our careers.
That’s a lot to pack into 10 square inches!
Most of us are digital natives. We grew up with computers and laptops and mobile phones in such a way that texting and being social online feel as natural as showering and going to work.
Our cell phones help us complete our work. They help us communicate with people we love. They store our schedules, our reminders, and our happy memories.
Cell phones give us an instant connection to everything in the world! That’s probably why 84% of Americans say they can’t go a day without cell phones, according to a Time Mobility Poll.
This also means 16% of Americans are probably lying.
Every day, we use our phones to check the time, the weather, the news, email, various social media sites, to search for answers on Google, and more.
Maybe you could go a day (or longer) without cell phones while you’re on vacation. But that’s not your typical day, is it?
Here’s the problem with our mobile dependence, though.
Most people don’t understand it.
Our heavy usage of cell phones is often demeaned and belittled. But we’ve always grown dependent of new technologies!
We became dependent on alarm clocks to wake us up in the morning. We became dependent on cars to travel and make it to work on time.
We’ve become dependent on newspapers and televisions – even toilet paper!
Could you go a day without using a refrigerator? It would probably be more inconvenient than what it’s worth. Cell phones are the same way.
They’re a relatively new technology that have changed the way we interact with the world around us, and that’s okay!
Rather than demeaning mobile dependence as a dreadful part of the human condition, why not embrace it as technology that advances us?
Why not instead learn how to best incorporate mobile technologies in our daily lives, and especially into our careers?
Consumers today are increasingly mobile-centric. If your business isn’t keeping up – or staying ahead of the curve – it’s going to fall behind.
Who would that be good for?
Most Americans say they can’t go a day without cell phones. That’s not a bad thing! But what are you and your business doing to adapt?