Not all of the vital information can be sent via an SMS nor does it make sense to send it since it will multiply the cost. It can be a very useful tool to direct your customers to a place you want them to visit. A hyperlink can direct your customers to a mobile website, to a survey or an app download.
Here are a few examples of what those might look like:
“Hi Mike, thanks for signing up, you can download the Verigator app at https://tinyurl.com/y8qz586q”
“Hi Kate, the API documentation can be found at https://tinyurl.com/ybtxzwlz, let us know if you have any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org”
As the standard SMS length is only 160 characters and most hyperlinks are pretty long (usually between 40 to 100 characters), they can eat up necessary space in your message. As well as contain characters that may lead to even longer messages due to those characters being from the Unicode character set.
Wish to know more about messaging through APIs? Read our ultimate guide to SMS APIs!
Therefore we suggest using an URL shortening tool, which helps make long hyperlinks shorter (as highlighted in the examples above). Plus, most of the URL shortening tools on the market provide you with additional feedback on how many clicks were made and where they came from. This helps with both the SMS length issue as well as provides some data to measure the effectiveness of your SMS campaigns sent through an SMS API.
Here is a selection of different URL shortening service providers that we recommend:
To make sure that no additional issues arise with message length or wrong characters, feel free to use our SMS length calculator to ensure that your text fits into a single message.
Branded links and spam filters
While there isn't a single approach to this, there are tendencies that should be taken into consideration when using link shorteners.
When there is a spam-related filtering system applied, there is a far larger likelihood that the non-branded URLs might not get delivered. Though no actual rule is implemented. This is because the bit.ly and goo.gl type URLs have been used for spam and phishing purposes.
The filtering itself is very market dependent and follows the trends that the market has overall (e.g. EU markets being more strict), though the non-branded ones might still be fine if the accounts themselves are whitelisted beforehand.
Although using non-branded shortened links might still work, we strongly recommend using branded links. This will reduce delivery problems and lessens the need for whitelisting links.