Text Messages - Settings
In this help doc, we'll review how to enable and configure text messaging in Time To Pet. With this feature, you can take client communication to the next level, providing a convenient and efficient way to engage with your clients. Enabling text messaging allows you to extend your reach and cater to clients who prefer receiving updates via SMS.
Note: Enabling text messaging is entirely optional when using Time To Pet. Our platform already provides built-in email and in-App communication methods, ensuring effective and seamless ways to stay connected with your clients and keep them well-informed. However, for those looking to enhance communication capabilities, you have the flexibility to enable text messaging.
IN THIS ARTICLE
Check out this video from our onboarding team on the texting integration!
Turning On Text Messaging
You can enable Text Messages by visiting Settings > Integrations > Texting in your Time To Pet account.
Note: Text Messaging is unavailable on the Free Trial.
Select Your Number
One of the first steps with setting up Text Messaging is to select your “text message only” phone number. This is a local number that you choose for your company. All texts sent from your business will be sent from this phone number. Your clients and staff can respond and send text messages to this number, and their messages will be automatically sorted to the appropriate conversation feeds.
You can search for a text messaging number by entering your desired area code or a specific series of numbers you want to be included in your number.
Note: It is not possible to use an existing phone number as your text messaging number for Time To Pet. Mobile carriers do not allow us to tap into existing phone numbers for security and privacy reasons. In addition, only text messages can be sent and received from this number; phone calls can't be made or received from this number.
After you have selected a number, be sure to confirm:
Client Phone Number Field
This is the field that contains each client’s phone number. You may have created a custom field specifically for mobile phone numbers so be sure to select the field that includes your client’s cell phone.
Max Messages Per Conversation
Because Text Messages have a limit of 160 characters per message, Time To Pet will automatically split longer conversations into multiple messages. In order to conserve the number of text messages that are sent, you can set a maximum number of text messages each conversation will be split into.
Maximum Images Per Conversation
Images will be sent as a separate MMS or picture message. For example, if you included 3 images with a conversation, three separate picture messages will be sent. In order to conserve the number of text messages that are sent, you can set a maximum number of images sent per conversation.
Notifications To Clients
Message Sent To Clients
When Enabled, any messages sent to your clients In Time To Pet will be sent to clients via text message as well. If you would like text messages to be sent to clients, Enable this setting. You can adjust the default message delivery setting for individual Clients in the Client Numbers section.
Event Started Notification
When enabled, we will send a text message to your client informing them when a visit is started. Note this must also be enabled in Mobile App -> Configuration.
Notifications To Staff
Staff Is Sent Message
When Enabled, any messages sent to your staff In Time To Pet will be sent to staff via text message as well. If you would like text messages to be sent to staff, Enable this setting. You can adjust the default message delivery setting for individual staff in the Staff Numbers section.
Client Request Services
When Enabled, all Admins/Office Managers will be notified by text when a client requests new services. If you would like text messages to be sent to Admins/Office Managers when clients submit new service requests, Enable this setting.
Client Request Service Change/Cancellations
When Enabled, all Admins/Office Managers will be notified by text when a client submits a Service Change/Cancellation Request. If you would like text messages to be sent to Admins/Office Managers when clients submit Service Change/Cancellation Requests, Enable this setting.
Staff Is Late To Own Event
When Enabled, staff members will be notified by text when they are late to their own event. If you would like text messages to be sent to staff when they are late to an event, Enable this setting.
Staff Is Late To Event
When Enabled, all Admins/Office Managers will be notified by text when a staff member is late to an event. If you would like text messages to be sent to Admins/Office Managers when a staff member is late to an event, Enable this setting.
Time To Pet allows you to view all text messages that were sent, received or failed in the "Messages" tab:
These messages can also be filtered using the filter settings at the top of this screen. A total number of messages used will be displayed in the top left-hand corner:
Text Message Billing
There is a $10 USD per month fee for our text messaging integration. This includes 250 text messages per active staff member. All staff can share texts, so a company with 2 staff members has 500 texts per month. If one staff sends or receives 300 texts, and one sends or receives 100, there are no overages. Texts will roll over to the next month, and any overages are billed at the end of each month at a rate of $0.025/text.
To view your text messaging billing information, click on the Billing tab in Settings > Integrations > Texting:
Time To Pet allows you to see a complete history of all transactions related to text messaging:
You can view a complete history of all billing periods. You can also see how many messages were used (sent and received), how many messages are set to roll over and if there are any overage charges.
Client And Staff Numbers
Time To Pet allows you to set default text message settings for all of your clients. This includes whether texting is enabled for a particular client or staff member and their default message delivery setting.
Bulk Settings Update
You can Enable or Disable text messages for all of your clients or staff at once.
You can adjust the default delivery method of conversations for all of your clients or staff at once.
You can also Enable or Disable text messages for each individual client or staff member and adjust the default delivery method of conversations for each individual client or staff member:
Time To Pet will also show you whether or not the client or staff member's phone number is a valid number. As a note, this tool will confirm that the number conforms to telecom standards but does not guarantee the number is able to receive text or MMS messages:
If you ever receive a text message to your “text-only number” and TTP cannot automatically locate the client or staff who sent the message, it will be placed in the Unassigned Messages tab. We will also send you a notification via email that you have received a text message that is unassignable.
Unassigned messages can be viewed under the Unassigned Messages tab:
You can assign this message to a client or staff member by clicking the "Assign" button:
Then, by selecting whether or not the message came from a Client or Staff, and selecting the appropriate person:
Q: Are picture messages supported?
Yes! You can send and receive MMS (or picture messages) along with text messages. You are limited to a maximum of 10 images per conversation feed message, and report cards, if sent, count as one image.
Q: Are stylized text messages supported?
Any text stylizing from the client's Conversation Feed, such as bold or italicized text, will not appear in the same stylization when sent to the client. For example, bolded text will appear as an all-caps message when the client receives the text message.
Q: Can I send texts to some clients and not others?
Yes! You can customize whether texting is enabled or disabled for each individual client. You can also choose the default delivery method of conversations for each client as well!
Q: Can I send texts to some staff and not others?
Yes! You can customize whether texting is enabled or disabled for each individual staff. You can also choose the default delivery method of conversations for each staff as well!
Q: Which countries is Text Messaging supported in?
Text Messaging is currently supported in the USA and Canada only.
Q: How much does Text Messaging cost?
There is a $10 USD per month fee for our text messaging integration. This includes 250 text messages per active staff member. All staff shares the total text message allotment, so a company with 2 staff members has 500 texts per month to share. If one staff sends or receives 300 texts, and one sends or receives 100, there are no overages. Texts will actually roll over to the next month, and any overages are billed at the end of each month at a rate of $0.025/text.
Q: Should I enable Text Messaging?
It’s important to note that Text Messaging in Time To Pet works differently than texting your clients from your mobile device. When Text Messaging is enabled, your clients and staff are able to receive text messages sent from you through the Conversation Feed.
If your clients and staff are used to receiving text messages from you, you might consider enabling the Text Messaging feature in Time To Pet. If you prefer to keep it simple, your clients and staff can continue to send and receive email messages to you through their Conversation Feed.
Many Companies prefer to have their clients download the Client Mobile App rather than use Text Messaging. With the mobile app, clients receive a push notification on their phone any time you send them a message, similar to how they would for a text message, but with the mobile app, there are no overage charges or character limits. And clients can also use the app to schedule services, update their information, view invoices, make payments, and more conveniently from their phone.
Q: How do my staff and I send text messages to clients?
You can send text messages to clients directly through their conversation feeds. If you've set up the client's default delivery as "Text Only" or "Text & Email", then all you need is to compose a conversation feed message or visit completion message as they normally would, and it will automatically be sent to the client as a text message.
If you ever need to text a client whose default delivery is "Email Only", then you would need to manually change the delivery of that particular message to "Text Only" or "Text & Email" before sending it through the client's conversation feed: