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The Ultimate SMS FAQ

Got questions about business texting? We’ve got a definitive SMS FAQ full of the answers you need.

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We get a lot of questions about SMS as a communication channel for businesses. 

That’s completely understandable, because texting for business is different from texting your friends and family. There are also a lot of SMS features that you’ll want to familiarize yourself with.

Since we get these questions every day, we’ve put together all the answers you need to get started in this SMS FAQ. 

We’ll explain the basics of sending texts, adding contacts, navigating the SimpleTexting platform, and more.

Adding and Managing Contacts FAQ

Before you send your first SMS, you’ll need someone to receive it. Luckily, you can import existing subscribers or build a contact list from scratch .

What does “compliance” mean?

Compliance basically means staying on the right side of the laws, rules, and regulations around texting set down by the cell phone carriers and different government agencies.

For most businesses that send texts, the first rule to know is getting express written consent to text your contacts.

The rest of these rules and laws mostly cover what you can text about and how you communicate with your contacts. If that sounds confusing, don’t worry: we’ve got plenty of easy-to-follow compliance information.

What are keywords?

A keyword is a word or phrase that allows people to subscribe to receive text messages from you. All your contacts need to do is text the word or phrase to your number, triggering a response. 

How do I add contacts?

You need a way for your audience to subscribe to receive your messages. The most common methods are keywords and web sign-up forms .

You likely already have a form on your site to collect emails. Add an optional phone number field to it to start collecting numbers. Just be sure to add a checkbox people can use to provide express written consent.

You can also import contacts that have already subscribed to your texts.

Can I split my contacts up into different lists?

You can segment your contacts by location, type of customer, birth date, or any other criteria you like. 

These segmented contact lists will help you personalize your texts and make sure you’re only sending messages your audience wants to receive.

Sending a Text Message Campaign

Once you’ve got a list of contacts, it’s time to write and send your first SMS. We’ll help you master the details. 

How long can a text message be?

That depends on the type of message you want to send. If you go with SMS, you’ll be limited to 160 characters

MMS lets you use 1,600 characters, while extended SMS comes with a limit of 306 characters.

How do custom fields work?

A Custom Field is a feature that allows you to personalize your messages. (For example, you could add a first or last name to an SMS message.). 

How do I send a mass text?

Mass texts are an effective way to reach lots of your contacts at once. To create a mass text, just write up a message as usual, choose the contact list or lists you want to send it to, and decide whether to send it immediately or schedule it for later.

How do I set up autoresponders?

Autoresponders help you reply automatically to texts from your contacts or send out automated messages over time (we call this a drip campaign). 

The good news is that autoresponders are simple to set up and manage from your SimpleTexting account. 

Can I set up recurring messages?

Yes, and it’s easier than you think. All you need to do is write up a regular message and set it to “recurring” instead of sending it immediately. If that sounds confusing, this article will show you how.

Can I attach files to my messages?

You can with MMS messages. MMS gives you more characters to work with than SMS and allows you to send GIFs, videos, photos, audio, and even PDFs in your messages. 

Can I add texting to the web apps I already use?

Yesーweb apps like Mailchimp, Zapier, and Salesforce (to start with) can be integrated with online SMS providers like SimpleTexting so you don’t have to interrupt your workflow.

See Your Results

So, you’ve sent your texts. The next step is knowing how to keep track of who’s clicking on them.

Can I look at how my messages are performing?

Knowing important details like which contacts are clicking on your messages, where they’re coming from, and new subscriber numbers is essential to sending better SMS over time.

That’s why we help you keep track of your analytics in reports we built just for you.

How can I track clicks on my links?

When you text a shortened link, we’ll help you track the click-through rateーthis article gives you the steps you need.

Bonus points: you can create audience segments based on who clicked on your link and who didn’t.

The Wrap on SMS FAQ’s

We hope these commonly asked questions on texting have given you the inspiration and information you need to launch your own SMS strategy.

Ready to get started? Try out SimpleTexting for 14 days, totally free.

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