- LAST UPDATED: 12/14/2018
- PRICING TIER: All
- APPOINTMENT VERSION: All
As of January 11th, 2019 AppointmentPlus scheduling software will begin sending true SMS for Appointment reminders. In the past, our users relied upon our "Text Message Reminders" plugin, which was based on email-to-text technology supported by various cell service providers. In response to cell providers deprecating this technology, AppointmentPlus has transitioned to utilizing full SMS messaging.
True SMS Reminders allow you to fully customize the data included in each message by adding any Appointment level field, and many Customer level fields from within your account. This plugin feature is available at the account and any Location for which the plugin is enabled will consume message credits from the same bank.
Enabling SMS Appointment Reminders
To enable SMS reminders you'll need to visit the Marketplace from Site Admin.
(NOTE - users who had Text Message Reminders enabled prior to SMS Appointment Reminders being released will automatically have this plugin enabled, and will receive a one-time credit applied to their SMS Appointment Reminder credit balance.)
Once you're in the Marketplace, you can sort by All to quickly find the SMS plugin. When you've found it, click on the Learn More/Enable option to proceed with enabling the plugin. This is only available for Headquarters Administrators.
Next, use the Select Locations drop down to choose which Locations you want to enable the plugin for, and then click Enable.
SMS Appointment Reminder Credits
Once you have the plugin enabled, or for users who previously had Text Message Reminders enabled, you'll need to manage SMS credits. Credits are purchased from AppointmentPlus, and are used to send SMS reminders. Each message (160 characters, including spaces) will use 1 SMS credit, so if a message takes two messages, it will consume 2 credits upon being sent.
Headquarters Administrator users within the application will see an SMS Appointment Reminder balance when on the Appointment tab.
The SMS Appointment Reminders tab within the plugin provides a basic breakdown of the packages available.
Credits: One-Time Purchase
To add SMS credits to your account, click the Manage Credits tab within the plugin options.
Here, you can choose to add more credits manually by clicking Add Credits Now. You'll see the package options and can Buy & Send right away. You can also choose to send any pending reminders for Appointments in the near future (3 hours). This is useful in you let your SMS credits run out and want to make sure today's Customers get their reminders.
NOTE: This requires a valid payment method associated with your account. If you pay via credit card, your card will be charge at this time. If the credit card associated with your account is expired, you will not be able to purchase credits and your Customers will not receive their reminders.
Credits - Auto-Renew Subscription
Your business may rely on Customers receiving reminders. To make sure that your account never reaches a zero (0) balance, you can subscribe to auto-renew credits. The same package options offered for one-time purchase are also available for auto-renew selection. When your account is subscribed for this offer, the bank will be replenished when it reaches a low balance threshold. This way, your account is never empty!
It is recommended that you subscribe to this offer to ensure you never miss out on sending reminder messages to your Customers.
SMS Appointment Reminder Settings
Within the Settings tab of the plugin you can format exactly how your reminders display to your Customers. In this tab, you can also select how far ahead of Appointments you want your reminders to send by changing the value in the first drop down.
You also have two fields on this tab: the SMS Message Template field, and the Preview field. Any changes you make in the Template window will display in the Preview window, showing you an example of what your Customers will see, based on their specific Appointment information.
When editing your message in the SMS Message Template window, you can use the Insert Appointment Info drop down to add Appointment, Location or Customer fields to your message. Be careful when adding fields here, as too many fields can easily cause your messages to consume 2 or even 3 messages when sent to your Customer, which means your credits will be consumed that much faster.
Frequently Asked Questions
You may have questions about this feature. We've prepared a separate Frequently Asked Questions article that you can review. If you still have further questions, please open a ticket with our Support team.