BulkSMS Ghana Cheated Me Out of GH¢10

I don't want to jump of the ledge and label BulkSMS Ghana a fraud, but things are sure looking that way, at least based on my own personal experience with them.  Yes, in the grand scheme of things ¢10GH, which as of the writing of this article only comes out to less than $2.00USD, is an inconsequential amount of money.  But as a concerned consumer I had to write this article nonetheless, to warn others who may be on the verge of sending BulkSMS Ghana their hard-earned money to do your due diligence beforehand.

Now I must be honest and say that I knew there was a possibility that something wasn't right even before sending them any money.  How?  Well first of all after registering and visiting the client area of their site, i.e. the dashboard from which you can send out SMS, there is no way to contact the company therein whatsoever.  For instance, you may notice that at the bottom of the left side panel there is a "Help" tab:

But when you click on it, this is what it brings you to...

...i.e. right back to the exact same home screen.

So then the next step is to try the account menu, to see if there's any way to file a grievance therein.  But as you can see, there's nothing in the drop-down menu whereas a registrant can do so:

So then the next logical step would be to click on the BulkSMS Ghana logo on the left side of the page.  Under normal circumstances, doing so would take a visitor to the homepage of the featured company.  But when I do so, this is what happens:

That's right, back to the same exact home screen. 

Well despite noticing all of this beforehand, I still gave BulkSMS Ghana the benefit of the doubt.  Why?  For starters, when you register they give you five SMS for free.  In fact if you look at the the screenshots above, you'll see that I still have a couple of those "bonus" SMS left.

Also it's not like you can register and then instantly start sending messages.  Instead you have to first get what is referred to as a Sender ID, which has to be approved by them.  So once mine was approved, within less than 24 hours, then I presumed that yes, there is in fact a fellow human being monitoring things on the other end.

Now there were a couple of other warning signs that materialized when I tried to actually top-up the account.  First of all such is automated, as perhaps to be expected, and it is done so via a service I never heard of known as SlydePay.  And for whatever reason, when you try to execute the transaction in Firefox, the page doesn't show.

However it does in Chrome, upon which I was instructed to go to the My Approvals section of my personal MTN Mobile Money account and approve the transaction.  Now I've done these types of purchases in the past, and when they're truly automated that means you get a prompt to verify the transaction, and that's it.  In other words, I've never done one where I had to actually go to My Approvals beforehand.  But anyway the order did show up in My Approvals instantly, and I accepted it.  And yes, the ¢10GH payment did go directly to SlydePay.

That was on Monday, 24 July 2021, i.e. a full week before today.  And still, I have yet to receive the SMS that I purchased.  So after the first 24 hours of my account not being credited I decided to google BulkSMS Ghana to see if I can find any contact information for them, since there was none featured via client site, as illustrated above.  And they do have an actual contact page and main website which, once again for whatever reason, is not linked to the client area.

Now I'll admit that I never went as far as to try to contact BulkSMS Ghana on telephone or Facebook.  There's a couple of reasons I really don't want to, at the top of the list being the fact that if a process is automated, then like the main benefit is supposed to be not having to go through the hassle of contacting the company in the first place.  But I did send an email directly to their sales' department, as listed on the above-linked contact site.  That was on Tuesday, 25 July 2021, nearly a week ago:

And still they have yet to credit me - or even respond for that matter.

CONCLUSION

Again, losing ¢10GH is no major deal.  I knew the risk I was taking when I sent that money to BulkSMS Ghana, SlydePay or whoever in the first place.  And whereas I was looking forward to potentially utilizing their service into the future, this was largely just a test anyway.  I'm just glad I didn't really dumb out and try to purchase an even larger package.

So my personal recommendation, if you decide to utilize BulkSMS Ghana, is to establish contact with their office and wait until you actually receive a response, directly from a human being that you can hold accountable, before sending them any money.  Or else you may find yourself in the unenviable position of having to call and jump through all types of other hoops just to receive a service you already paid for, which once again totally defeats the purpose of automated payments, to say the least.

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