Set Up Text Messages (SMS)

Text messages can be triggered by events within the plugin or scheduled to be sent out to clients and staff (see more). 

Text messages will incur additional charges, which vary depending on the country of the sender.

Setup

1. In the Bookly Cloud section, find the Register button on the right side of the page. Enter your email address and password, click Register.

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Your login details in the Bookly SMS account may be different from your access to Bookly backend.

An email containing the confirmation code will be sent to your email address. Click on the Confirm email button and use it in the Confirmation code field to complete registration.

2. Click on the Get started button on the right to switch on the SMS Notifications service.

Account settings are available by clicking on your user name (email address) on the top of the page.

3. Click on the Recharge button to top up your balance with one of the standard amounts.

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When you recharge your Bookly Cloud account, you automatically get the support period indicated below the selected amount. Learn more about customer support from Bookly here.

You may want to make sure you never run out of balance and your messages don't get blocked. To do that, make sure you've selected and enabled the Auto-Recharge option. When enabled, it will charge you the amount that you choose each time your balance falls below $10.

To turn off the Auto-Recharge option, hover the mouse over the info badge, click Change, then Disable.

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Bookly Cloud – disable autorecharge option

If you'd like to control your payments manually, you can always rely on the notifications the admin will be getting when your balance falls below $5.

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In the Administrator phone field enter a valid mobile number in the international format.

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Upon each balance replenishment, Bookly can automatically send an invoice to your email address.

Open Account settings > Invoice. Set it up by filling out the necessary details, check the Send invoice box, and click Save invoice settings.

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Important

If you do not use the Bookly SMS Service or send any text messages for more than 12 months, all remaining credits on your account will be automatically zeroed.

4. To send scheduled notifications please execute the following command hourly with your cron:

wget -q -O - http://[your-domain]/wp-cron.php

We advise that you contact your hosting provider for assistance with setting it up. Also, pick the right hour for the notifications that will work best with your audience. We recommend a default of 8 pm for customers and around 1h or 30 min before clock off for staff members.

Read more about CRON setup in this article.

5. Choose notification types and build your messages. Write the copy, format it as you like, and add personalized data using variables in curly braces.

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If you plan on using scheduled notifications, choose what time scheduled notifications will be sent out under each type of notification you're building.

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6. Custom Sender ID allows you to send messages from a personalized sender name. You can display your company or brand name. Prices for messages with the custom sender ID are usually 20-25% higher than normal message price. Check the price list for more info.

Note

a) not all countries allow custom sender IDs due to the local regulations. If custom sender ID is not supported in the destination country, the message will be sent using a generic number of the SMS gateway;

b) Sender ID must be longer than 3 and shorter or equal to 11 characters.

Text messages (SMS) can have as many characters as you wish. If the texts of your notifications exceed the limit, the messages won't be cut in two, but you will be charged twice as much. That's why you may want to optimize the cost by cutting down on the number of characters in your text message notifications.

Latin characters – 160 symbols fit in one message.

Any other characters (Cyrillic, Chinese, Arabic, etc.) – 70 symbols fit in one message.

You can use this Online SMS Length Calculator to check the length of your message.

SMS Campaigns

Reach all your customers with text messages for various marketing purposes.

1. In Bookly Cloud > SMS Notifications, open Mailing list tab. Click on the new-list-btn.png button. Set the title.

2. Click on the add-recipients-btn.png button.

Automatic selection – the system will add to the list all contacts that meet the selected criteria and have attended at least one service/provider selected in the Providers and Services fields. For example, if you set All staff in the Providers field and the customer had a meeting with one of them, this contact will be added to the mailing list.

Manual selection – you can add contacts manually by entering one phone number per line in the international format.
Click on the Add recipients button to save the list.

3. Open Campaigns tab. Click on the new-campaign-btn.png button. Set the title and schedule a start date and time of the campaign. Once you set a start date, the campaign will have a Pending state until that date and time, but you can change the start date until the campaign begins. Messages will be sent in the time zone that is set in your WP site settings.

4. In the Recipients field, select the Mailing list.

5. In the SMS text, enter your message. Click Save.

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Sent messages are listed in the SMS Details tab.

SMS Verification

You can use customer verification by SMS to ensure that their contact information in a booking form is correct.

Go to the Settings > Customers > Verify customer's contact information at Details step, and select Always verify phone. This way, a notification with verification code will be sent by SMS every time a client books an appointment on your website.

If you choose Only if data is different from the previous order, a verification code by SMS will be sent in case of the updated phone number.

To disable SMS verification, select Off.

Bookly Settings – Verify customer's contact information

 

RELATED

Overview of Notifications – see how you can schedule emails and what you can set as triggers for automated and personalized emails.

Text Message Rates

Personalization Codes – messages can include real appointment data among other types of personalized info.

Set Up Emails

 

GOOD TO KNOW

How can I configure CRON to send the Bookly reminders?

How do I change or reset password for my Bookly Cloud account?

WPML Integration – lets you translate messages into 40+ languages.

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