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Text Request SMS Chat User Guide

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SMS Chat is our version of live chat. It goes on your website, and visitors to your site can then click on a floating chat bubble to start a conversation with your business.

It’s easy to install, works seamlessly with your Text Request account, and can help your inbound communications a lot. Below we’re going to breakdown all of this to help you start using and finding value in SMS Chat ASAP.

What is SMS Chat and how does it work?

SMS Chat is a widget made by Text Request that goes on your website. Once installed, you and all your viewers will see it floating on the bottom of your website. It works on both mobile and desktop devices, though it looks and works slightly different depending on which device the viewer is using.

For reference, click on the chat bubble in the bottom right corner of this page.

To start a conversation with your business, a viewer just needs to click on the SMS Chat bubble. If they’re using a desktop computer, a small form will open asking for their name, phone number, and message.

SMS Chat Slide Out Form

If they’re using a mobile device (phone), clicking the SMS Chat bubble opens a text on their phone auto-addressed to your number - just like our other Click-to-Text options.

Either way, all messages come into your Text Request Queue from that contact’s phone number. Reply to their message the same way you reply to everyone else’s message, and - whether they started the conversation from a computer or phone - your reply will go straight to their cell phone.

Take a look at the video below to see it in action!


Why should I use SMS Chat?

Live chat options have been proven to increase website engagement. That’s always a good thing! Our SMS Chat also has a few distinct pros that make it a good choice for most businesses and organizations.

  • All messages go through your Text Request dashboard, so you don’t have to worry about managing multiple tools.
  • SMS Chat captures viewers’ mobile numbers, so you always get the best way to reach them, whether it’s for sales or service.
  • Viewers don’t have to stay on your website to continue the conversation. They can take the conversation with them on their phones wherever they go.
  • You can track and pull reports on the inbound leads you get under Reports inside your account.

In short, using SMS Chat is easy for you and helpful for your customers.

How do I install SMS Chat on my website?

Depending on your setup, your webmaster (or whoever has access to your website's code) might need to do this for you. If you’re using a free Wix or Wordpress website, you might have to upgrade your account to use SMS Chat. But all it takes to get SMS Chat on your site is a little copy and paste.

Just follow the steps below.

SMS Chat Screenshot

  1. Go to Integrations inside your Text Request account (Note: only account Administrators and Managers can view Integrations. For more details, view our User Permissions page.)
  2. Make sure you’re on the SMS Chat page. (Clicking on Integrations should take you directly to SMS Chat.)
  3. Check which Text Number you’re on. You need to be viewing whichever Text Number you want SMS Chat messages going to. (The code that you’ll copy and paste will be different for every Text Number under your account.)
  4. Click Advanced Options. You’ll see a preview of your SMS Chat widget, and customization options for text and colors.
  5. Customize your text and colors. This is optional, but a good option to use if you’d like the widget to match your branding. Text can contain up to 11 characters. Colors are show in hex values. Here’s a color chart for reference.
  6. Click Generate. This will update your SMS Chat code with your new color and text choices.
  7. Copy the code.
  8. Place the code into the HTML of your site, directly before the closing </body> tag.
  9. Save your changes, and refresh your page to see them!

How do I use SMS Chat?

When a new message comes in from your desktop SMS Chat, you’ll see “SMS Chat from [Name]:" at the beginning of the message. Messages that come in from mobile SMS Chat do not have this intro. They appear like any other message.

From there, notifications, signatures, autoresponses, and replies all work like any other message. That’s about all there is to it!

What about other Click-to-Text options?

All the Click-to-Text options we’ve had in the past still work. You can still hyperlink “sms:1[your10digitnumber] to words on a page (like so), or receive messages through Click-to-Text code we’ve promoted in the past.

These are good options, especially for saying "Call or text us!" on your home and contact pages. However, you will no longer see those Click-to-Text options inside your Text Request account.

We encourage all users to add SMS Chat to their sites. It will help you increase engagement with website viewers, and drive more inbound communications.

Still have questions? Contact us.