SMS has always been the cheapest and best personal messaging medium. Businesses have particularly found SMS helpful to send business, financial and general information to their customers. These days SMS has found a new use — sending critical verification information. If you are exploring cheap options for implementing SMS solutions in your business, this article will come in handy. After reading this article you will know:

  • What SMS APIs are
  • Why they can be important
  • Top cheap SMS APIs for 2021

What are SMS APIs?

An SMS API allows you to send text messages to people through the SMS gateway. You can integrate SMS communication services with your business and communicate with your customers effectively using SMS APIs. 

Suppose you are a clothes retailer. You can use an SMS API to notify your customers about discounts, orders and deliveries. You can also use SMS APIs to verify financial and login transactions.

Why are SMS APIs Important?

There are many advantages of using SMS APIs, two of them being cost-effective and reliable. Companies have used SMS APIs for decades, and it has proven to be effective.

The global population is increasingly using smartphones, and the trend has risen steadily. This rise in usage makes SMS APIs more relevant than ever. You can reach out to your global audiences (in different languages) and remind them about their orders, appointments and deliveries. You can automate your messaging system using SMS APIs, which ensures zero hindrances in your communication and frees up your resources. And more importantly, you can secure your customer data using SMS APIs to send verification information.

Because SMS APIs have direct access to the SMS gateway, you get to quickly and reliably reach your customers. On top of that, you can collect the data, analyze it and use the results to improve your communication strategies as you go. 

Top Cheap SMS API

Take a look at the SMS APIs that made Benzinga’s List.

1. Best for SMS, MMS and Email Integration: ClickSend

One of the reliable SMS APIs, ClickSend, has a decent starting price and is great for email, SMS and MMS marketing.

ClickSend provides cloud, SaaS and web-based deployments for Android, iPhone and iPad. It delivers most SMS marketing services, including 2-way messaging, personalized messages, reporting/analytics, mass texting and scheduled messaging.

With 24/7 support, ClickSend is one of the readily available SMS APIs that is easy to use, provides value for your money and has excellent customer service.

  • Starting price: $20 (USD)
  • Pricing: Per user
  • Free version? No
  • Trial version? Yes

2. Best for Adaptive Routing and Global Compliance: Vonage

Previously known as Nexmo, Vonage’s SMS API provides lots of services at lower prices than its competitors.

Vonage promises outstanding reliability with its global compliance engine and outbound network. You don’t have to worry about regional compliances and can connect with your international customers easily.

Vonage also allows you to re-route your messages for reliable delivery. It also integrates features like 2-way messaging, persistent sender ID, shortcodes, programmable phone numbers and intelligent splitting.

Vonage also provides 24/7 live service as well as chat support.

  • Starting price: $0.0068 for sending and $0.0062 for receiving
  • Pricing: Per SMS
  • Free version? No
  • Trial version? Yes

3. Best for SaaS Deployments: Twilio

With Twilio’s reliable integrations, you can reach out to your global clients fast and worry-free. You can integrate Twilio’s SMS API with any web-enabled interface with no additional setup.

Twilio provides features like mass messaging, 2-way messages, MMS capabilities and shortcodes. It also lets you quickly send bulk MMS integrated with your text messages. With Twilio’s claimed 99.99% uptime SLA guarantee, you can trust it to send time-sensitive messages to your clients and customers.

Twilio also provides 24/7 live support, along with live chat and website support.

  • Starting price: $0.0075 for sending and $0.0075 for receiving
  • Pricing: Pay-as-you-go
  • Free Version? No       
  • Trial Version? No

4. Best for Web Intergration and Bulk Messaging: BulkSMS

As the name suggests, BulkSMS is an excellent option for sending bulk messages. With seamless web integration, you can reliably send messages to large audiences.

BulkSMS’s core strength is its easy integration with a web interface — just upload your content and click “Send.” Along with bulk messaging, it integrates other services like 2-way messaging, delivery reports, automated rules and keywords in response. With great FAQ pages and video tutorials, BulkSMS is easy to use and offers an excellent price for its services. It also provides 24/7 support for its customers.

To send bulk messages using BulkSMS, you will have to add credits to your BulkSMS account.

  • Starting price: $0.0312 for 5,000 credits
  • Pricing: Pay-as-you-go (credit system)
  • Free version? No       
  • Trial version? No

5. Best for Scaling and Diverse Reach: MessageBird

MessageBird provides seamless integration for cloud, SaaS and web-based deployments. Along with generic SMS API features, MessageBird also includes services like polls/voting, mobile coupons, text-to-win and scheduled messaging.

MessageBird is ideal for businesses that send promotional offers and advertisements to their customers regularly. With excellent documentation, in-person training, live online training and video tutorials, you start using MessageBird in no time.

MessageBird also has 24/7 live support along with help desks, FAQs and chat support.

  • Starting price: $10, one-time 
  • Pricing: Pay-as-you-go
  • Free version? Yes
  • Trial version? No

6. Best for Small Businesses with Generic SMS API Needs: MessageMedia

MessageMedia is simple, easy to use and gets the job done. You can create user accounts, share the SMS templates and start sending messages on the go. You can also customize the templates and get real-time analytics through MessageMedia.

MessageMedia also provides services like 2-way messaging, detailed reporting, scheduled messaging, shortcodes, automation, polls/voting and mass messaging.

With decent customer service and ease of use, MessageMedia gets its job done.

  • Starting price: $39 per month for 1,000 SMS
  • Pricing: Subscription-based
  • Free version? No     
  • Trial version? Yes        

7. Best for Small to Mid-size Businesses: Atomic SMS Sender

Atomic SMS Sender is renowned for its bulk messaging capabilities. With its reach extending up to 200 countries, Atomic SMS Sender is perfect for global clients. It provides cloud, SaaS, web-based and desktop (Windows) deployments.

Atomic SMS Sender provides features like personalized messages, reporting/analytics, contact management and scheduled messaging. You can also send promotional bulk texts conveniently using Atomic SMS sender.

Since it is only catering to your bulk messaging needs, it does not provide other generic features like 2-way messaging, MMS, shortcodes and polls/voting.

Atomic SMS Sender has 24/7 live support along with chat support.

  • Starting price: $25
  • Pricing: Per feature
  • Free version? Yes
  • Trial version? Yes

A Great Addition

SMS APIs are a great addition to your business. Be it for expansion or client outreach, SMS APIs are efficient and reliable. If you haven’t integrated an SMS API with your business, we recommend you start searching for one.

Before buying an SMS API service, we recommend you clearly understand your audiences, the purpose, the return you expect, and how well you want to execute your market strategy. There are a lot of options in the market for different niches; you have to find yours.