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What is SMS?

SMS stands for Short Message Service and is also commonly referred to as a "text message". With an SMS, you can send a message of up to 160 characters to another device. Longer messages will automatically be split up into several parts (up to 4). Most mobile phones support this type of text messaging, but we recommend keeping marketing SMS as short as possible.

How do I start sending text messages through e-shot™?

If you would like to use e-shot™ to send SMS text messages, you will need to contact to the Customer Success team who will talk you through the process and help you set it up.  

How long does it take to set up?

We can normally set up the SMS on your account within 24 hours. 

How do I pay?

SMS credits can be added to your existing e-shot subscription.  

What counts as a credit?

One credit pays for one standard text message to one contact. For example, a 160 character message to 50 people would account for 50 credits.

When will you charge more than one credit?

Messages that are longer than 160 characters or when you send to international numbers. The pricing for longer (concatenated) text messages are charged as follows:

  • 161 to 306 characters = 2 credits

  • 307 to 459 characters = 3 credits

  • 460 to 612 characters = 4 credits (this is the max)

Some characters are “compound” characters and use two characters in a message.

Please note that when you use personalisation in your text content, you may exceed the 160 characters.

International sends are charged as double the credits. If you send over 460 characters to an international number you will be charged 8 credits.

US/Canadian networks can only handle up to 160 characters. Longer messages will be rejected by the network.  

Is it legal to send text messages to mobile numbers?

You must have a lawful basis for sending SMS in line with current Data Protection legislation. We do not tolerate SPAM. Please be sure to check our terms and conditions and our Anti-SPAM policy.

Can my contacts unsubscribe (opt out) from SMS?

Yes they can (by replying STOP) and they will automatically be unsubscribed from future SMS campaigns. We will not allow SMS to be sent to an unsubscribed contact unless evidence of them resubscribing is provided.  

When a contact on my list unsubscribes will they be unsubscribed from email too?

No, only from SMS unless they use a Preference Centre to opt out of both email and SMS.

How do I acquire a new From Number and can I have multiple ones?

You can have more than one number and these will be set up for you as identities –similar to if you have multiple email identities. If you know which country you are going to send to and it’s not the UK, please let us know.  

Why do I need to pay for a From Number?

In much the same way as you pay for a SIM card for your mobile phone, we have to register and pay the network for your From Number..

How do I enable unsubscribe (opt-out) in my text messages?

Just add: reply STOP to opt-out at the end of your message. We will do the rest.

Can I use my own mobile phone number?

Not as a From number but we can arrange for your replies to be emailed to a designated email address.

What format should I use for the phone number when importing contacts?

We accept the following formats:
•    +44 or starting with 0 and 00,
•    numbers that contain characters like ,.

Can I have multiple phone numbers for the same Contact?

Yes but only with a different email address (you cannot have 2 or more contact records with the same email address).

If I have the same mobile phone number on multiple contacts and a campaign is sent will it sent and charge multiple messages?

No, we will only send and charge one credit for each mobile phone number.

Can I have different contact numbers for contacts found in different subaccounts?


What field should I use for the mobile phone number?

You have to import the contacts into the mobile field which is one of the standard fields.

Can I have an e-shot™ SMS credits only account?

If you would like to use e-shot™ only for sending SMS, you will need to subscribe to a monthly or annual contacts based account based on the number of contact you have. Once you have an e-shot™ account, all you need is to buy the number of credits you need for your SMS messages.

What is an SMS Bounce?

We mark mobile numbers as Bounces when the network respond with “Declined”. It means that the network is unable to deliver  (e.g. out of signal / phone switched off / inactive number).. 

Can you unsubscribe a contact from receiving SMSs?

Yes, a contact can be marked as unsubscribed in the UI on their contact record.

Can you unsubscribe as a recipient by replying to the SMS?

Yes, by replying STOP to the message.

Can you register a display on an SMS?

It is different from email but if you include links, we do monitor if a link is clicked and this shows in your reporting.   

What are the delivery reports for SMS?

For SMS we report on delivery status:
Delivered (confirmed) - Messages which were successfully delivered to the contact's mobile and have been confirmed by the provider;
Delivered (unconfirmed) - Messages which have been sent via a provider that does not supply receipts regarding the status of the SMS;
Pending with network - Messages which are yet to be delivered to the contact's mobile e.g. the mobile is switched off or it does not have signal.

Can you register clicks on links?

Yes, links can be used in SMS messages and e-shot™ will record and monitor these links. Monitored links are shortened to try and use as fewer characters as possible.
If a link is clicked in the message it will also be reported as delivery confirmed.

How many characters can I insert into a text message?

SMS text messages could have up to 612 characters for non-US/Canadian networks and up to 160 characters for US/Canadian networks. Characters such as “space” and line breaks are also counted. Please see the FAQ When will you charge more than one credit? For detailed information and costs.

Can I use HTML in a text message?

You can’t use HTML in SMS text messages as it will be regarded as normal text. A newer form of text message called RCS can be used to deliver messages with a richer content experience akin to email marketing. Please contact us if you are interested in RCS. 

If a text message was sent to an invalid phone number will I get charged?

You will not be charged for invalid numbers and it will be marked as a bounce.

If an SMS was sent to a valid but unavailable phone number will I get charged?

For a valid but unavailable phone number you will be charged and it might result in a “Delivery Unconfirmed” or “Pending with Network”

What are Regions and are there any geographical sending restrictions?

Please tell us where you intend to send your text messages to so we can advise you and set up your account correctly.
•    We operate 2 regions: US only and International (rest of the world including UK);
•    UK numbers can send messages to UK or international numbers but not to the US;
•    International (non US) numbers can send to UK or international excluding to the US;
•    US numbers can only send to US/Canadian numbers.

Can I use personalisation links?

You can include dynamic content from the contact record in SMS sent from e-shot. This can be as simple as first name personalisation or as sophisticated as contact centric dates and URLs to enable reminders and things like shopping cart abandonment.  

Can I send Images in my SMS?

Basic SMS does not support images. A newer form of text message called RCS can be used to deliver messages with a richer content experience including images. Please contact us if you are interested in RCS.   

Can I create an automations using the SMS feature?

SMS is supported as part of our Automated Series tool, meaning you can create SMS-specific automations or mix them with emails to deliver multi-channel automated journeys.   

Can I send an SMS from a Name instead of a Number (e.g. Coke)

Yes it is possible, but you would need to include an opt-out number in the message so that your contacts can unsubscribe.

Can I run a keyword campaign through e-shot? 

Yes, contact our customer success team to discuss your requirements and we can help you set up your campaign. Keyword campaigns are a great way to collect opted-in data and can be used for specific things like competitions as well as being a very effective method of data capture. 

Can I have URL links display my company name or product brand? 

Yes, contact our customer success team to discuss your requirements. Keep in mind that character length is key in the cost of your SMS send, but brand recognition can have a very positive impact on response rates. 

Where can I see any replies made to my SMS campaign. 

Under Analysis you will find the menu item SMS replies. Her you will find the details of the contact, the campaign they are replying to and their reply. 

Can I easily identify when someone subscribed to receive SMS if I am asked? 

Yes, in the individuals contact record you can find the details of both when they subscribed and when/if they have unsubscribed. 

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