Textlocal Mobile Marketing FAQs and Help Centre
If you have any questions about mobile marketing or Textlocal Messenger, read these FAQs. If you cant find what you're looking for call our support team
If you have any questions about mobile marketing or Textlocal Messenger, read these FAQs. If you cant find what you're looking for call our support team
An SMS gateway is the means through which a computer can send or receive SMS messages. Often allowing for the conversion and sending of other forms of media or message (such as email), SMS gateways will generally use the same mobile phone networks as the messages sent from mobile phones.
There are no contracts involved in running a Messenger account – it all works on a pay as you go basis, so you can send text messages with no hassle. If you purchase any inbound systems, they have a minimum term of one month which is renewable.
You do not need a mobile phone; messages are sent and received from Messenger. It is all web-based so you don’t need to download anything. All you need is an internet-enabled PC, Mac or Tablet.
Before you send a message, you will be presented with a pop-up box. This preview screen confirms your message content, sender name, contact group etc. as well as how many credits this send will use.
You can view and amend or cancel all scheduled messages in the Reports section of Messenger.
We do not provide data, however we do offer an SMS Short Number which is extremely effective in collecting opt-in numbers from your customers and can be used alongside any text marketing activity.
Any UK business, society or community group can use Textlocal to reach out to customers, staff or members with SMS, instantly connecting to people wherever they are. With different levels of service, there’s something to suit an organisation regardless of size.
SMS stands for Short Message Service and refers to sending short text messages from one device to another. MMS stands for Multimedia Messaging Service. MMS is an expansion of the SMS format that is able to send larger quantities of information per individual message. With an MMS, you’re able to send multimedia content types including video, images and audio to another device.
Yes, people can opt-out of your SMS marketing using your free, randomly generated keyword that is given to you when you open the account. The opt-out instructions will be the keyword followed by the word STOP to 60777 (UK only), or simply the word STOP to a Virtual Inbound Number (available at extra cost).
Alternatively, we also include a URL based opt-out option for your clients, ideal for non-UK traffic.
When one of your users chooses to opt-out of your SMS communications, their phone number will be automatically removed from all of your contact lists and added to your opt-out list. This opt-out list can be viewed, edited and exported for further use. The opt-out will block any messages being sent to this number from your account again until the sender chooses to opt back in. If you upload the number to your contact groups again by mistake, again the system will remove this for you, ensuring the opt-out is maintained.
Your data is completely safe. Textlocal does not share or pass on any of your data, including the mobile numbers you upload. Your data will only be used for your SMS marketing. For further information see our SLA.
The Reports section of your Messenger shows if a message has been delivered or undelivered, if it’s pending or if the number was invalid.
Your SMS credits will never expire and are available for use as long your account remains in use.
Textlocal was established in 2005 by Alastair Shortland and Darren Daws.
Textlocal was acquired by imimobile in 2014. As of 2021, imimobile and Textlocal are part of Webex by Cisco.
Our inbound services will only support inbound SMS from actual handsets. We do not support Application-to-Application messages, such as verification codes, social invites or OTP.
If you use a sender name, for example your company name, people cannot text back as the receiving phone cannot tell where the message originated without a phone number. To receive replies, your outgoing SMS must be from a number. This can be either your own mobile number, meaning the replies will be delivered to your handset, or a Virtual Inbound Number which we can supply.
Alternatively, for a few credits more, you can use our Simple Reply Service. We will allocate a Virtual Inbound Number to each group of messages you send out, each message using 1.5 credits.
There is no additional cost for the inbound element of the conversation. The cost for Simple Reply Service is selected at point of send. The sender will be charged at their standard network rate.
By using a sender name, you are overriding the number the message comes from. This means that the receiving phone cannot decipher where the message has originated in order to send a reply.
A Short Number, also known as a ‘short code’, is an abbreviated phone number, and in the context of mobile marketing, these allow for consumers who have received a marketing message to easily respond.
For example, if you were looking to increase the number of recipients of your marketing messages, use a call to action with the message “To opt-in to receive further marketing communications send ‘OPT-IN’ to 60777”. In this instance, ‘60777’ is the Short Number, which would direct the message to our servers. Upon reading the keyword ‘OPT-IN’, our software will automatically sort the number that sent the message into your business’ opt-in database.
We do not offer premium rate services.
A keyword is a requirement when using any kind of shared number. The message must start with the keyword so the Textlocal system can direct the message to the correct inbox. Try and keep your keyword as simple as possible to avoid mistakes.
All the messages you receive online will appear in your Textlocal Messenger inbox. This inbox works just like your email inbox.
Messages will stay in your Messenger inbox permanently. You can easily export these to an Excel file for your own records.
All inbound messages sent to Messenger will be automatically forwarded to you via email. You can select up to 20 email addresses for the messages to be forwarded to for each live inbox. This is free.
We can automatically forward inbound messages to your handset. This costs 1 message credit. You can set this up in the settings area of your inbox.
Inbound services are available for business users only.
Using a Virtual Inbound Number or Short Number, you can receive text messages from UK customers at no extra cost. It’s free for you to receive the message and only costs the customer their standard network cost. All messages will appear in your Messenger account. You can also choose to automatically forward all inbound messages to you via email for free.
Short Numbers will only work from handsets registered in the same country as the code. Our 60777 and 66777 Short Numbers work only in the UK. However, for Ireland, we own the Short Code 51777 and Textlocal has access to Short Codes in more than 20 other countries.
Textlocal offers a free UK Short Number with every Messenger account, along with a free unique Keyword. This comes as standard and it’s free to receive texts to your Messenger account. Any message sent to a shared Textlocal short number with your keyword at the beginning will automatically be forwarded to your Messenger account.
There are additional options to personalise Keywords and Short Numbers. The short number only works on handsets in the country it is registered to. For more info on Short Numbers, see the page on receiving SMS.
Short Numbers are country specific.
Only UK +44 numbers will be able to text into UK Short Numbers. Only Ireland +353 numbers can text into the Irish 51777 Short number.
Our Virtual Inbound Numbers (long numbers that looks like this +447XXXXXXXXX) are also designed to work in-country. If wish to have two-way traffic with a specific international destination, a dedicated number for that country would be a better solution (subject to availability). Please speak to our Sales team to discuss your requirements.
A Virtual Inbound Number allows you to receive all inbound traffic to that number, regardless of what the content starts with. You do have the additional option to segment by keywords if you wish to (if you have multiple marketing campaigns).
Yes, we do support enterprise businesses in sending messages internationally. To benefit from global reach and share messages with international customers, your account manager will need to enable the feature. To ensure your business qualifies for access, the support team will need to validate your company details. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to request to have this feature activated.
We currently offer transactional SMS to USA numbers. To send to the USA, your text message will need to have a US sender ID. To activate a US sender ID, the cost is £150 setup and £50 per month rental, ex vat. Messages will cost 1 credit per 160 characters (based on £ sterling billing).
Please note; marketing messages are not supported to the USA. We can only support two way and transactional SMS communications to USA numbers.
You must not send more than 1 SMS per second per sender ID. Each sender ID is limited to 250 SMS sends per day. If this is exceeded, your number will be blocked and will no longer work. If you need to send more than this, you need to purchase additional sender IDs and spread the traffic across the different IDs.
If you would like to purchase a US sender ID please contact your Account Manager, or our Sales team.
Textlocal allows you to connect with any mobile phone in over 200 countries. Depending on the country you are sending to, the message will cost you between 0.2 and 2.5 credits. International credit multipliers are available here – https://www.textlocal.com/product/international-sms/
As standard you can use the GSM character set. If you are a business user and you require Unicode please contact email@example.com
Please note, a Unicode message will be at most 70 characters per SMS message, instead of 160 characters for GSM.
Yes it can, as long as it is 11 characters or less. Sender names are a great way to enhance brand awareness. You can create as many sender names as you wish, at no extra cost.
Our typical processing speed is within 3 seconds. For larger campaigns we also offer API and SFTP integrations.
The first 160 characters will use up one text credit. If you go over 160 characters, we concatenate the message, and it reduces the number of characters available. It states clearly when typing your message how many characters you have used and how many credits your text will use up.
Yes there are, the more credits you buy the cheaper it gets. To see a list of our bulk SMS prices, please sign up or log in to see our bundle prices.
Yes, it’s easy to queue text messages for delivery. Choose to schedule them to be sent only after specific times and dates. You can also set an end date for your message to expire, to prevent it being sent out after a specified date. Staggering messages is also possible, to allow time to handle responses instead of being overwhelmed by many at once. If you need to change the time and date the send is scheduled for you can do so via the reports section of Messenger.
Yes, you can merge data into your messages by inputting the information into your Excel spreadsheet. Once you have uploaded the file you can make sure each column heading is relevant to the information stored in each column.
A message will use over one credit if you do either of the following:
Messages are processed for delivery within 3 seconds. Onward delivery of the SMS to the final handset delivery is reliant on networks involved, cell site coverage and handset connection.
Using our award-winning SMS platform sending messages is simple, however if you would like help managing or sending your bulk SMS campaigns, then please consider using our managed services or contact our friendly support team for help.
Yes, our SMS gateway can be used reliably from any email software, server or CRM application. Access to the gateway is free and allows the user to send SMS to an unlimited number of recipients. Simply sign up for a free Messenger account.
Before you send a message, you are presented with a confirmation pop up box. This screen confirms your sender name and if replies will be permitted, who or what group will receive your message, how many credits your send will use, when the message will be sent and finally the message content.
Unfortunately, as we offer this information before you send your message, we’re unable to recall a message due to the delivery speed being 3 – 5 seconds and we do not offer any refund of credits for messages sent out in error.
Email to SMS is a built-in feature of Messenger which allows you to send and receive SMS from your Email application.
You can set up your email address, sender names, message length and security in the Email to SMS settings within your settings tab.
Simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org from your registered Textlocal accounts address. To send from other addresses simply add them as aliases on your Settings->Email to SMS settings page.
To indicate the end of your message simply include ## and any text following this will not be included.
Email to SMS costs the same as sending SMS from your Textlocal account.
You can select what you want the sender name to be by entering this in the subject field in this format: sender=YOURNAME. This is optional; if you choose to not enter anything in here your default sender name will be used.
Email to SMS works with any email service provider.
Each group created in your Messenger has a group ID which can be found in your reports section and then Advanced Reports. To send email to SMS to this group use the address format: tlgrpXXXX@txtlocal.co.uk.
Use the format 077XXXXXXXX@txtlocal.co.uk you can add as many single contacts as you wish by adding to the ‘to’ and ‘cc’ fields and also within the body of the email.
If you are a registered UK charity, then you can benefit from a flat rate of 2.8p per text (UK only sends). Specially tailored for charities, Textlocal provides the lowest cost possible for text credits, enabling you to enhance communications with supporters, colleagues and potential donors.
You must have a registered charity number and have an email account registered at that charity’s domain address. To apply for a charity account, click on the charity button in Settings.
Yes, you can use the free Mobile Web Page creation tool within your Textlocal account.
A Mobile Web Page/ site is designed especially for the smaller screens of mobile phones. It will improve the customer experience for people visiting your page/ site on their mobile handsets.
You can send a link to your mobile page via SMS.
No, you can create single pages. For example, you could take an existing customer email campaign and turn it into a Mobile Web Page.
Our Managed Services team can help create these for you, cost-efficiently. Contact us for a quote.
An MMS is a message that contains either a picture, video or sound file. These can be sent and received in your Textlocal Messenger account. Please note MMS can only be sent to the UK.
API stands for Application Programming Interface. An API allows for easy communication between two pieces of software; acting as a translator or go-between. In the context of text marketing, an API translates the information that you enter into a text marketing programme into a format appropriate for sending over a mobile phone network, or vice versa.
It only takes 15 minutes to be up and running. See our Developers page to see example documentation and code examples. http://api.txtlocal.com/docs/
The API is FREE to use. You just need to pay for the credits to send the messages.
Yes, you simply purchase SMS text bundles and we even have a price match promise. If you find prices cheaper elsewhere, we’ll do our best to match it.
You can purchase bundles of credits up to 25,000 online with a credit or debit card or PayPal. Alternatively, if you wish to pay by bank transfer, contact the team to request an invoice – subject to minimum of £100 value. The credits will be added upon receipt of payment.
Your online invoices can be found under the Reports tab in Messenger, under the invoices option.
Any inbound number can be purchased via the inbox section in Messenger. Click ‘create a new inbox’ to proceed.
No, you pay for the number of credits you need and inboxes for as long as you require them for.
No but we do offer auto top-ups.
Whether you’re sending 500 or 50,000 text messages, Textlocal can find the price plan to suit your business needs. Our platform is full of fantastic features to really help drive the delivery of your business messaging.
Whatever your requirements, our direct carrier relationships and price match promise guarantees that we can’t be beaten on price.
Within your Messenger account settings, you can choose to add an alert to your SMS credit balance. You can add up to four alert thresholds, choosing additional email addresses that you’d like to be notified as well as a contact number to send an SMS to. This will cost one SMS credit.
From the purchase page, you can select the auto top-up option to ensure you always have enough credits in Messenger to manage your sends. You set the number of credits that will trigger the top-up and the maximum amount of times a month you’d like to top up automatically for the credit bundle of your choice.
Once you have verified your mobile number, we’ll add 10 free credits to your account for you to test the platform to that mobile number.
It is an online data capture form which is designed especially for the screen of a mobile phone.
The tool can be used to create any kind of data capture form. This can be application forms, registration forms, questionnaires, booking forms and much more.
There are two different pricing options available. The pay-as-you-go option will cost 2 credits for every survey sent within 160 characters. There is no other cost for this. Alternatively, you can pay £25 a month and send an unlimited amount of surveys (still using one text credit per send).
The survey is sent via a link in a text message.
Yes, you can insert images to your form, including your logo.
A mobile survey can be accessed from any internet enabled phone.
Responses are collected in your Textlocal account. They will be displayed in charts to easily digest the information and available to export to Excel.
An attachment is an additional file you can send as a link in a text message.
Providing that the document that you wish to attach is smaller than 10MB in file size, you’re good to go. Within your dashboard, select the file that you wish to attach. Our platform will convert the file into an easily accessible link within the body of the text message. The file will be hosted securely on our servers, so attaching a file to an SMS message is not only easy but requires minimal IT infrastructure on the part of your business.
When on the ‘send SMS’ screen, click to include attachment and we will host it online for you and add the short link in your text message.
There is no extra cost to include in an attachment to your text message. The link will use up characters in your message.
If their phone is not connected to a WIFI connection, then they may be charged for data allowance.
The maximum file you can attach to a message is 10MB.
Tickets and vouchers are for one-time use only. Once the unique code has been redeemed, it cannot be redeemed again.
A loyalty card can be used multiple times; you set the rules for how many times it can be redeemed and what actions sit behind each scan.
You design this as part of the tool in your Textlocal account. It’s a mobile optimised page, you add images or logo’s, colours, text, bar codes and/ or QR codes, plus any links or mail merge features.
Your voucher, ticket or loyalty card is sent to your customers as a link in a text message. This can be sent directly to them or as an auto-response to a short number keyword.
Yes, these are unique codes that can be used for any kind of redemption. A unique code or bar code could be used for entry into an event or venue, to claim a discount on a purchase, one-time access to an online account or a unique pin number.
Your Textlocal account can assign unique codes to all your customers or you can upload your own unique codes if you have them.
Codes can be redeemed by manually entering the code into your account or integrating it with your EPoS system.
You can include the unique code for that contact in the body of the text message so they can still access the code even if they can’t click through to a mobile page. You don’t have to include a mobile page.
Yes, full integration is possible so tickets, vouchers and loyalty cards can be redeemed through your till system.
Yes, all results are displayed in your reports and you can also download them as a CSV file. You can separately download the data for anyone who hasn’t redeemed their code yet and target them with a reminder text message.
You can include any normal mail merge fields and trackable links in the text message itself or on the mobile ticket, voucher or loyalty card.
Yes, you set how many times it can be redeemed and what alerts are set after each scan, so you know what rewards are due and when.
The unique codes we set for one-time use are fool proof and cannot be redeemed more than once. If attempted, an error message will occur and then redemption will be declined.
Yes, you can set the expiry date and an expiry message on the first set-up screen. Once you’ve completed the entire set up you choose when you want to push the ticket, voucher or loyalty card live.
In partnership with Textlocal, you can create a new revenue stream from existing customers, whilst helping them grow their business using highly effective SMS marketing.
As an SMS White Label partner, we make it easy for you to create new revenue streams for your business. Your branded platform can be set up in minutes so you can quickly benefit from offering mobile marketing solutions to your customers. You can set your own pricing for different customers, which means you can build the most competitive offering. We provide you with your own account creation tool, master account and fully integrated reporting tools, so you have full control over your SMS propositions.
White label SMS benefits include:
Your fully branded platform means that Textlocal is hidden away in the background. You purchase SMS credits from Textlocal in bulk and these sit in your platform. These credits are transferred to your customers when they make a purchase, however you must have enough credits in your account to be able to transfer them.
These credits can be sold to your customers at a competitive price, to maximise your profit margin. We will require a domain name with a secure (SSL) certificate to set-up your branded platform.
We can usually do this within seven days, to get your service up and running on time. Please speak to our Sales team to discuss your requirements.
You can import mobile numbers from an excel sheet or a CSV file. You can upload your mobile numbers along with five fields of information with just a few clicks of a button. You can also enter your numbers individually or by copy and pasting if you have smaller volumes.
This is because Excel thinks your mobile number is an SMS long number so has converted it into scientific notation. To fix this click on the column header, click Format Cells->As Number->0 decimal places.